bd2 meet up with Datel's Account Management team at Sherrington's
Our relationship with Datel, the UK's largest Sage business partner, goes back well over 20 years. For many years we worked as their creative agency on numerous marketing campaigns, as well as brand development, their corporate websites and in partnership working predominantly on integrated e-commerce platforms. Going back to the nineties and naughties, Datel's marketing was heavily focused on direct mail which we used for a variety of communications from product info, invitations to events, case studies and news letters. Added to this was a lot general corporate communications materials such as stationery, folders and presentations.
Over the years we've also redeveloped and refreshed the Datel brand, the most recent being in 2014 when we introduced a secondary visual language to support the logo - which was updated because our research highlighted the value of what is a very well-known and highly regarded brand - and we devised a new strapline.
Alongside our work as their agency, we were a natural partner to turn to when Datel's clients started to look to use emerging internet based technologies, which was an area we were very keen to move into. Back in the 90s and early 2000s, this was primarily on e-procurement systems for Datel's clients to handle either in-house processes or interactions with a dealer network over the internet. For example, we designed a system for Burberry to manage their supply chain from the Far East, and an online ordering portal for Yokohama Tyres to allow resellers to place orders. Back then we were working primarily as what we'd now call Ui designers, back then it probably didn't have a name, but we were designing the system's screens or user interface working closely with Datel's development team who built it.
By working alongside Datel's team, which is recognised as the best in the Sage world, and supplemented by our own growing website development work, we were building our knowledge base and developing and refining an effective delivery process. This enabled us to gradually transition from 'tech savvy' designers to increasingly handle the entire software development of the web solution. These integrate with the various Sage ERP systems - X3, 1000, 500 as well as Saleslogix CRM - that Datel implement and support, generally via Datel's own API suite, Fusion. This has largely been focused on B2B e-commerce for clients such LG Harris, the brush manufacturer, Douglas Gill marinewear, Ralawise clothing distributors and Wax Lyrical who make scented candles, to name just a few.
Additionally, there's also been quite a few completely bespoke projects over the years; We built an online print management system for Bunzl Retail and their client John Lewis; a white label web platform for Ralawise which now has over 1000 sites; and an EPOS system for iconic jewellery brand Boodles which integrates with their Sage X3 ERP. In fact we've just launched a new enhancement for the Boodles solution which uses NFC chips housed on very small tags attached to a product to retrieve that product's specific data on a mobile, which then allows the sales team to access cut down information and functionality from the EPOS.
There's been a lot happening, some exciting new projects in the pipeline along with some new additions to Datel's Account Management team, so it seemed like a really good time for a catch up and a chat over a few pints, pies and peas - we are in Wigan after all! We invited everyone to our very own craft beer bar Sherrington's which proved an ideal venue:
"Great as always to catch up and hope to see you all again soon." Tim Purcell, R&D Director, Datel.
"It was a great afternoon and I think everyone enjoyed it." Darren Saint, Account Development Manager, Datel.