With passion and joy, Schwarzbräu brews its own beer in Zusmarshausen. They carefully select the best batches of hops from the Hallertau, Spalt and Tettnang, draw clear brewing water from their own deep well and use traditional, high-quality barley types. These are then processed into brewing malt in the brewery’s own malthouse.
Going for maximum efficiency
Dealing with the same challenges as many other breweries, Schwarzbräu is constantly challenged to maintain a high quality and consistent, competitive products, while being under constant pressure to reduce operating costs. Therefore, the brewery wanted to take efficiency to new levels.
Schwarzbräu is one of the best-known German breweries. For generations the family brewery has been brewing premium beers, which have won more than 400 awards and prizes – among them the prestigious award Best German Brewery.
Highly effective and competitive breweries typically demonstrate the capacity to incorporate and embrace processes that reflect a proven optimal way to perform each business process. IT plays a major role in implementing best practices in a brewery, and IT-wise Schwarzbräu had reached a crossroads: Should they invest heavily in further development of their 26-year-old bespoke system? Alternatively, should they invest in a new brewery management solution?
Built-in best practices
When the pains of operating with the old system had reached an unacceptable level and further development had become possible only at a high expense, Schwarzbräu decided to start looking for a new brewery management solution.
Based on the experience with the previous system, the new solution should build on an established standard, thus giving Schwarzbräu investment security. Furthermore, to increase efficiency it had to have advanced functionality, particularly regarding data processing.
Another requirement was that the system had to offer open interfaces: the programmable control system by ProLeiT, the tour planning software and the electronic archive needed to be integrated. It was also important that the new solution would be easy to use.
An additional requirement was to make data exchange between individual departments easier. Up till then, data had to be imported into Excel sheets, which were then made available to co-workers.
All in all, Schwarzbräu was looking for a state-of-the-art beverage management solution where the most important processes were supported and intelligently designed, in order to reach a best practice operational level.
"We have got a flexible, fully integrated solution that provides best practices out of the box,” says Leopold Schwarz, managing director of Schwarzbräu GmbH.
The new brewery management solution has become an important instrument for Schwarzbräu’s ability to create automated, coherent and intelligent information flows across Schwarzbräu’s management of their financials, production, purchase, inventory, contracts, refunds, empties and deposit, sales and marketing and events.
This has helped them getting quick access to analysis, reporting and invoice processing. Status on orders, open items, balances and debtors can be viewed with a click. Summaries of income statements show the profitability of items, customers or properties. In addition, it has become much easier for Schwarzbräu to structure prices and conditions and organize them by discount groups, enabling swift pricing.