Lucas Refrigerated Transport – Calgary, AB

“It used to take me two days to do payroll and now I can get it done in a matter of hours. . . .
I don’t regret it for a second. It is the best thing we did.”

Lucas Refrigerated Transport is a company based out of Calgary, AB, and about 10 years ago they invested in Axon software. We spoke with Tracy from the accounting department to get her thoughts about why that was the best thing they had ever done.

“I am Tracy Blank, formerly Tracy Lucas, and I work for Lucas Refrigerated Transport, a family-owned business. I have been working since about 2000 and part-time for a little bit before that. I work in the accounting, administration, payroll end of the company. I work from my home, which is great, especially with children and a busy family. It’s awesome.”

Has Axon helped streamline your job?
“We enter once and it’s there. I used to have to enter things twice. We used Simply Accounting for that side of things and we had spreadsheets in Excel. We would have to duplicate that entry work into Simply to get the accounting information out.

“If you take the time and do it right the first time, you will know it is right and you are good. Before, if you made a mistake, it would go all down the line into all those other areas. One mistake could carry on. So it has been great actually. I love it.”

How has your experience been with Axon?
“Excellent. Support is always there if you need it. They have all been really good and helpful, reminding me how to do things that I have forgotten. They are always there if I need them. It has been great.”

Has Axon changed the way you do your owner operator statements and driver settlements?
“I used to do it in Excel before, so now it is way more automatic. You don’t have the problem of mistakes with copying and pasting information or entering information, because it’s all automatic. There is a lot of information in there that comes right from the system, which I don’t have to type in.

Payroll is way, way better than it used to be. It used to take me two days to do it and now I can get it done in a matter of hours. As long as I have all my billing information in, because we pay our drivers on revenue, I can get payroll done in three hours.”

Has Axon sped up the time it takes you to do invoicing?
“Yes, because it feeds into all the other modules so that you don’t have to duplicate your work.  There is so much information in just the orders. You can get so much information out of that.”

How are you liking the revenue reporting?
“It’s great. I have made and set up all kinds of reports. You can get all your information if you set your parameters. We use my reports to give us our numbers per unit and on a company basis too.

“There is also equipment revenue reporting where you can get all kinds of information. It’s great to look at some of those numbers – whether your fuel has gone up or down, or how it’s affected the bottom lines of the units – how they are doing from year to year or month to month. That information is there, at your fingertips, in seconds.”

Without Axon would you have needed to hire more employees?
“I would think one, if not one and a half full-time to keep up with everything. Yes.”

Has Axon helped with collecting receivables?
“It’s just easier. You can print off the reports right away, showing what is outstanding for customer statements.

“It’s great to be able to email the statements directly from Axon. When I started emailing the invoices out a few years back I thought, ‘Why didn’t I do this before?’ It is slick; it’s awesome. It has saved me a lot of time and I can do it anywhere.

“I can work from the cabin and I can get my invoicing done there as long as I have the work with me. It’s great, I love it.”

Does it save you much time now that you download fuel bills?
“That saves a lot of time, because we want to make sure that we are giving enough detail on the owner operator statements – what fuel they purchased, the dates, how much, all of that stuff.

“With fuel downloads, all that information comes right into the system, which then feeds into their equipment statements. Before, we keyed it all in, but now there is no chance for error. It is automatically imported into the system and there is more information too.”

If someone from the industry asked about your experience with Axon, what would you say?
“It has been an excellent system. It’s really, really user-friendly. If you don’t know what you are doing, the help function in the top right corner has so much information in it. Go there first and if you can’t get the information you need, there is support, and the support has been excellent – always very friendly and helpful. It has been great.

“We are letting them host the server too, which has been a lifesaver for me, not having to deal with a server in-house.

“When I want to go to the lake for the weekend, I don’t have to worry about whether the computer is going to malfunction, and then we are stuck because I can’t connect to the server. It is so stress-free. We don’t have to worry about upgrading the server, we don’t have to worry about doing updates on the software, none of that. It is all done behind the scenes and it has alleviated so much stress from that perspective for sure.

“I think it has been great, and I don’t regret it for a second. I think it is the best thing we did.”

Lucas Refrigerated Transport Website

 

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