Discover how Chessington Garden Centre switched Microsoft NAV (now known as Business Central) partners to unlock new revenue streams and business growth.

From humble beginnings

Chessington Garden Centre opened its doors in the spring of 1967, and has quite literally continued to grow and flourish ever since. Ambitious plans to develop the business have seen its offering develop from a small nursery to retail giant, with a diverse retail, hospitality and events business housed on one Surrey site.

Chessington Garden Centre is still family owned and run, but as one of the largest employers in the area, is a complex business.

As it moves into its sixth decade, Dynavics has been able to provide the essential view it now relies on for actionable insights.


A microcosm for all things retail

Stock control was cumbersome and time consuming, events were taking off but booking systems were outdated. Season sales were becoming log jammed by dreaded till queues and Chessington recognised the value in loyalty programs and gift cards, but the systems were holding them back.

They ploughed on investing in a dead system, but were simply treading water. They knew the sort of technology they needed must be out there, but how to connect to it was still unknown.

Things came to a head when even a simple upgrade to the windows operating system was out of reach, as their current system was unsupported and the task ahead too daunting to undertake without significant business cost and risk.

Chessington felt disconnected from their current partner. Systems needed a long overdue health check. In essence, they needed the sort of expert, reliable, trustworthy advice they give to their own customers.

Dynavics was just the transparent partner they needed. They could understand their pain points and find cost effective solutions. A sensible, measured approach, where they could identify return on investment. A simple release form was all it took to switch to Dynavics, who then lifted the bonnet to take a look.


Moving Forward

Taking the leap from the Microsoft Dynamics NAV system installed in 2004 to the latest 2018 version meant Chessington could immediately take advantage of the additional functionality, improved performance, and intuitive interface.

Eliminating 22 standalone EPOS databases, Chessington have gained real-time insight to data across the business and are now able to adapt efficiently to daily retailing conditions.

The addition of Jet reports has provided unparalleled access to information, anywhere and anytime by simply logging into a web-based portal. With less hassle to access information, they now take control of making critical business decisions based on real time data.

Dynavics background in retail implementations and partnership with LS Retail, meant they had specific tools to integrate into Microsoft Dynamics NAV quickly and effectively. Chessington took advantage of a membership management module to launch their Loyalty card scheme, which has strengthened their relationship with customers, secured more repeat business from customers, and has grown in store sales.

Now fully mobile, they could ditch the 3rd party apps they previously used, to save both time and money. The days of being tied to the desk were over and real time data was now available to enable staff to work flexibly and efficiently across the site.


Up in the clouds

When you’re running a desktop system, you’re always held back by the fact that your data and application are both sat on a local hard drive. There’s a constant need to back up your data each day, and any updates to the software must be bought and uploaded if you want to make sure you’re always using the latest version of the software and remain in compliance.

With Dynamics 365, your data is sat in the cloud on safely encrypted servers, so no costly infrastructure to maintain, low barriers to entry and unparalleled flexibility, all come as standard. When all you need is an internet connection to access your data, you can carry out any accounting operational tasks and forecast and report with ease.


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Replace basic accounting software with an all-in-one business management solution.