Atlantic Boats Provides a Full Service Facility with DockMaster
Atlantic Boats originally opened its doors in 1989 and has since grown into a full service boating facility with numerous customer service awards. Customers find everything they need under the one roof – a marina, a range of boats for sale or rent, marine service and storage.
The team at Atlantic Boats has used DockMaster for over a decade as their marine management software. As an all-inclusive platform, it runs the various departments in their business.
During 2020, travel restrictions put a hold on normal vacations and kids’ summer camps, so what did people do? They turned toward more locally based leisure activities and the boat business is busier than ever. It’s been a particularly enjoyable season for Atlantic Boats.
DockMaster’s software platform has kept the business running steadily through this busy time, keeping a close handle on all departments and their operations.
The features of DockMaster the business uses most
DockMaster captures customer details starting from the very first interaction. This begins from a general enquiry, through to building a customer profile and history so that staff can proactively advise on service and new products in the future. One customer profile keeps everything they need to know about that customer; how many boats they have; service history; parts purchased; and anything else about that customer’s preferences to help them provide a higher level of customer service.
The marine store runs all the purchase orders through the software which is integrated with the inventory system. This manages stock in different locations including the front of house, the stock room, boat and trailer inventory and the marina itself.
Managing inventory accurately is one of the benefits of Dockmaster. As it’s location based software, the staff runs a variation report to find out what stock has been sold on the day, and then do a reconciliation for all their locations.
“We manage inventory independently and plan ahead. We’ll do the reconciliations through DockMaster but once a year we also do a physical count. This is quite an event and we get training and support from DockMaster.” Jason Lindstrom, Marine Store Manager at Atlantic Boats.
Detailed reports generated by DockMaster means the business can plan ahead with confidence for resources required in forthcoming seasons. Reports detailing previous years’ sales history and sales trends, inventory levels and customer activity allow the team to develop a strategy to maximize sales and provide a high level of customer satisfaction. For example, when people are on vacation, they don’t have the time to wait for boat parts. With historical data based on trends, Atlantic Boats can accurately predict inventory needs.
“Right now we’re getting ready to put the boats away for winter. During this time we start planning for the following season. We can pull up the last couple of years’ reports and look at what we sold, the supplies we used and the services we provided. We can make an educated decision on what the year ahead is going to look like and set up the purchasing system for the next season.”
How the business has streamlined its operations with DockMaster
Work order management
With the variety of services they offer, their work order management allows tracking of technician hours, stock and inventory parts used and history. Each order means they have a full profile of that customer and their purchases – parts, service, storage and more. It also gives the business a top to bottom view of revenue and profit margins from each order.
Special orders (custom orders)
The business represents a variety of outboard companies and they need to provide a flexible and tailored service as their customers need it. Customized orders don’t need a new system or another screen, they can be generated right at the Point of Sale. The entire sales process can be run through the POS.
The reports in DockMaster are both sophisticated and simple to use. They provide sales history, inventory trends, customer profiling and a range of other reports to help the business plan for the next season. Atlantic Boats values being able to track trends and stay one step ahead of what the next season will bring. This means they can provide a better level of service and their staff is much happier and able to deal with a very busy season with more ease.
“We can look back over a customer’s history to find details about their boat or boats, parts and service history. For example, we have people chasing fish up Onset Bay on Cape Canal through rocky sections and the propellers get chewed up. We can easily look up the propeller we installed five years ago and source the same one.”
What’s next for Atlantic Boats?
“We’re thinking about setting up online boat sales and integrating this with real time inventory management. We’ve been doing quite a few online sales through third party software but we’ll probably take the step and have it all set up through our primary website.” Jason, Marine Store Manager at Atlantic Boats.
Final comments about DockMaster?
“For businesses still running their operations on pen and paper, they don’t know what they’re missing out on. DockMaster brings so much more ease and efficiency to marina businesses. I still keep paper and notes out of habit, but at the same time I really don’t have to, because 99% of the transactions and correspondence is stored in the software.”