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Business software causes headache for online retailer

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“We went down the wrong road at the start,” recalls Blacker. “We went with the wrong company, and that was a massive challenge.”

The pair were recommended K3 Elucid, a software system to control their sales ordering, warehousing and budgets ordering. “It was an off-the-shelf system that could basically run the business for us,” laughs Blacker. “But it was far too grand for us.”

The software was so sophisticated that neither Reeves nor Blacker could figure out how to use it.

“Because they were trying to create a system which would suit a huge multitude of different users, they made it unbelievably complicated,” says Blacker. “All we’re doing is trying to flog a few sofas! Admittedly, we’ve got 1,400 product lines but what we do is arguably relatively simple,” says Blacker.

The purchase cost the firm £70,000. That was £70,000 wasted as the founders had to invest in a new system, one they could actually use, only a few months later.

“Now, we have our own bespoke piece of software,” says Blacker. “It was written for us by a freelance programmer called Jascha Gordon. It cost us £50,000 to build, but it’s absolutely brilliant. It runs our business beautifully, and we’re improving it all the time.”

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