Often referred to as the ‘Jewel of the Cotswolds’, Broadway is the quintessential honey-coloured Cotswold limestone village.
A popular tourist attraction, the ‘broad way’ refers to the wide, tree-lined high street which now features an eclectic mix of shops and cafes, many of which are located in listed buildings.
Dating back to the late 1960’s when it opened as a traditional antiques dealer, Pavilion Broadway is now a leading retailer of designer furniture and luxury home accessories from two bricks and mortar stores in Broadway and Tewkesbury, plus a hugely successful ecommerce website.
Family-owned, the business was started by Adrian Ewart, diversifying into reproduction furniture as the business saw a new opportunity.
Through a process of trial and error, the product mix evolved and the business grew organically from there .
Adrian’s son, David joined the business in 2008 and it was renamed Pavilion Broadway. Working seven-days-a-week, David pushed the business forward so it eventually occupied three stores on Broadway itself and grew a hugely successful online presence using the Magento ecommerce platform.
Showcasing the very best designer furniture brands, Pavilion Broadway sells pieces from the 20 suppliers including Eichholtz, Hypnos, Duresta and Parlane.
Pavilion Broadway is also the UK’s official distributor for designer furniture brands Theodore Alexander Modern and Jonathan Charles Fine Furniture.
Cloud ecosystem supports business growth
To support their continued growth, David has sourced best-in-breed cloud-based software to manage various aspects of his business.
For example, he’s chosen Microsoft’s Office 365 subscription service for emails, documents and spreadsheets, plus Brightpearl to manage his retail operation, such as orders, inventory, customers and accounts across multiple channels – and with the addition of Brightpearl’s Warewolf product, his retail warehouse as well.
“Products in the cloud enable us to run the business easily from anywhere. We don’t have to manage any servers or infrastructure and we automatically get updates” says David.
“I chose Brightpearl because they had a solution for all my problems. The stock is fully tracked end-to-end. If purchase orders are raised on Brightpearl, we know if something has actually been ordered.”
Adding delivery management to the software mix
Although Pavilion Broadway was experiencing impressive growth, the move to a new 22,000 sq/ft furniture showroom in Ashchurch near Tewkesbury plus 25,000 sq/ft warehouse just round the corner virtually doubled the size of the business overnight.
One part of the business was struggling to cope with the rapid growth: Pavilion Broadway’s logistics operation.
What was previously possible using Google Maps on its own manually was no longer viable for a business looking to support the increases in growth it was subject.
“We used to print out all our orders, put them into piles by geographical area and then try to make a route. This was neither efficient or scalable. We were also prone to missing drops that could have been on a delivery run because we didn’t realise they were close. Multiple piles of paperwork appeared and lots of Google Maps windows as you can imagine. On the run up to Christmas it was a full-time job” says David.
Brightpearl introduced Pavilion Broadway to Stream in 2017 as it integrates seamlessly – and is also cloud-based. The fact that Stream had a number of other furniture businesses using the software also contributed to David choosing Stream.
“Stream and Brightpearl has removed all manual processes from our workflow. Planning our deliveries used to take me about a day. I can plan everything now in 45 minutes” says David.
Running Stream and Brightpearl at Pavilion Broadway has improved workflows in a number of key areas:
- Able to view all orders on one screen by location using Stream’s Google Maps integration
- See what’s on each order so you can be sure not to overload the van
- Orders import directly from Brightpearl saving time and reducing errors
- Ability to split orders, add comments, add stops
- Electronic proof of delivery and auto fulfilment of items after delivery
- All delivery information is now digitally stored in both Stream and Brightpearl
- Order statuses automatically updated in Brightpearl based on fulfilment status
- Driver app eliminates errors and need for paperwork
- Customers automatically emailed on the morning of delivery with an update reminding them of when there delivery will be.
“With Stream, we have dramatically improved the efficiency of our deliveries. Stream worked closely with us to ensure the software was integrated with our business and our workflows. We have honestly not looked back and see Stream as a key business partner. We are now processing double the orders that we were two-years ago and continuing to grow.”
Having also launched a wholesale furniture retail arm Furniture Brands International in February 2019, which is aimed at UK-based interior designers and décor experts, what’s next in David’s expansion plans?
“We’re working hard to further develop our online business, which is showing an impressive 5% week-on-week growth in visitors. As we scale our business, technology partners such as Stream who facilitate efficient, automated workflows are critical to meeting our expansion plans whilst maintaining best in class customer service.”