West Fraser Timber Case Study
West Fraser is an integrated forest products company producing lumber, wood chips, MDF, plywood, pulp, linerboard, kraft paper, and newsprint. It holds extensive timber rights in British Columbia and Alberta that provide raw material for its manufacturing operations. West Fraser also has operations in the Southeast United States.
The old system at West Fraser was a legacy HP database and query/entry system. While it provided basic functionality, new business developments introduced by acquisitions, changing business procedures and government regulations were becoming major issues for West Fraser. Connections to several remote locations were also causing problems in terms of communication speed and processing time.
The new system had to meet all the BC reporting requirements and upload all required weigh scale load data to the new HBS Internet site.
With its ability to handle a virtually unlimited number of users and vendors (limited only by the power of the server running the Oracle database), LIMS provides a comprehensive solution for the management of West Fraser’s numerous holdings.
The version of WeighScale implemented for West Fraser is specifically tailored to the needs of BC’s reporting requirements. This WeighScale will collect all required information for delivered loads, so that even while operating in stand alone mode, a given weigh scale site will be able to upload all required weigh scale load data to the new HBS internet site. Because data summarization requirements are configurable from the load delivery detail, the WeighScale software minimizes the need to rollout new versions due to changes in HBS requirements. With WeighScale, BC clients can use LIMS to submit load deliveries, sample, piece/volume and receive electronic invoices/reconciliation information and automated MOF payment advice transactions.
3LOG’s LIMS system replaces the company’s existing Woods System that was developed by West Fraser technical staff. The new financial system is based on Oracle financials and LIMS is based on the Oracle client server system making them a good match for the long term.
The LIMS system was configured specifically for West Fraser following a thorough examination of West Fraser’s business practices and discussions regarding increased flexibility and enhancements.
3LOG has built this system with American weights and measures, taking into account the West Fraser’s specific business practices. This has been accomplished by making use of the core functionality of the LIMS program and the expertise of 3LOG Implementation Consultants.
Dean Bergen (Woodlands Controller – Canada) commented, “I can’t imagine a better client/supplier relationship. 3LOG provides the absolute best product in the market and they’re continually adding new functionality based on the latest technology.”
LIMS’ client/server architecture greatly increases the scalability, compared to mainframe systems, with its ability to share resources between the central computer and remote stations. To decrease network traffic, the LIMS server application contains most of the logic and business rules. Also, the client application has been developed to reduce traffic volume on the network to further increase efficiency, even for slow remote connections.