Hain-Celestial Canada: Workflow Automation with Nintex, SharePoint and Office 365

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Hain-Celestial is a leader in health-foods and organic personal care products with a mission to create and inspire “A Healthier Way of Life”. As the parent company of popular brands such as Alba Botanica, Avalon Organics, Arrowhead Mills and much more, Hain-Celestial’s products can be found in over 70 countries across the globe and net sales are in excess of $3B annually.

For this project, the Hain-Celestial Canada division engaged with MRS as part of the organization’s ongoing initiative to streamline operations and automate core business processes.

Turning innovative ideas into market-ready products with a faster time to market

In striving to provide consumers with innovative better-for-you products, implementing efficient processes that rapidly transfer innovative ideas into market-ready products is critical for the company. However, the process previously in place to launch new products was outdated and not up to the extremely high standards the company sets for themselves.

For years the process depended on a master Excel sheet and long, confusing email chains. Compliance was difficult to enforce, data wasn’t validated and it was hard to know whose turn it was to edit the sheet and what their responsibilities were. The result was usually three copies of the sheet that needed amalgamation, a lack of clarity as to the current state of the product development process and, crucially, it was next to impossible for managers to audit the process and hold team members accountable for individual and group tasks and responsibilities. Hain-Celestial Canada needed a solution for this problem and turned to MRS’ SharePoint and business process automation expertise to lead the initiative.

From Excel spreadsheets, duplicate documents and endless email chains to one custom workflow automation platform

To deliver the optimal solution that would accomplish critical business objectives for Hain-Celestial, SharePoint Online, Office 365 and Nintex were identified as the most powerful tools to use. Already an Office 365 user, and with existing Nintex licenses, this also helped reduce costs and kept extra service to a minimum, ensuring a fast and smooth onboarding and learning process for the new application.

The cloud-based solution, with integration between Office 365 and Nintex, utilizes powerful robotic process automation (RPA) tools, responsive forms, e-signatures and more to automate data capture and transfer while enforcing compliance through permissions and data validation.

On the home screen, users have a list of their active products with due-dates and other responsibilities so that they are always engaged, on-track and don’t miss any tasks. At various stages of the product development process, employees are notified with push alerts when they are to complete a task. Responsive forms with mandated input fields ensure that all required information is logged with rigorous attention to detail – enforcing strict compliance to policies, procedures and best practices. Managers, responsible for the process outcome, have a view to identify outstanding tasks and requirements, enabling them to audit all project statuses in one view on a responsive, user-friendly dashboard.

Leading the project from ideation to completion

MRS’ role in the project was to lead and manage the entire systems development lifecycle (SDLC) from front-to-back. MRS worked in close collaboration with all stakeholders to deeply understand the process, identify business and technical requirements, determine the optimal solution, implement the strategy/roadmap and architect the solution.

The project was delivered leveraging MRS’ proven agile-scrum methodologies. Through this the project team was able to get fast feedback from users and rapidly test functionality on the go, ensuring that at the needs of all stakeholders were addressed at all times and that the solution would provide the optimal user experience. Furthermore, MRS provided testing, training, and detailed documentation throughout and after the development.

Hain-Celestial Canada is thrilled with the results and is benefiting from the streamlined process that helps them take new products to market faster and with increased efficiency.

The MRS team worked with our stakeholders and user groups tirelessly to understand and solve our challenges and implement the solution that met our business needs. MRS handled all technical matters so that we could focus on optimizing the process while continuing our daily tasks. MRS has earned my trust as an IT solution provider and we will work with them again in the future. Sandro D’Ascanio, VP of Marketing, Hain-Celestial Canada

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