Wolf’s Ridge Brewing was opened by father-son team Alan and Bob Szuter in 2013 in Columbus, Ohio. The goal was to create a micro-brewery and fine dining restaurant that would bring the local community together. Wolf’s Ridge has been named one of Columbus’ best restaurants four of the last seven years and the brewery has grown to more than 3,000 barrels per year. The brewery acquired a new facility in late 2019, which positions it for growth up to 20,000 barrels in the years to come.
As Wolf’s Ridge grew, it needed to bring someone on board with brewery experience who could liaise with the distribution and sales teams. Adam Hickernell joined as head of distribution in January 2016. Wolf’s Ridge does not use an outside beverage distributor, so in his role, Adam oversees inventory in multiple locations, manages more than 3,000 kegs and directs a team of drivers to make daily deliveries. With so many moving pieces, Wolf’s Ridge needed a software that could simultaneously show available inventory, create delivery routes and invoices, and enable communication between the production, sales and distribution teams. In January 2018, the Wolf’s Ridge Brewing team found the solution they were looking for in Ekos.
Each team at Wolf’s Ridge Brewing is using Ekos for their specific needs. The sales team can access Ekos on their phones or tablets while meeting with accounts to ensure that inventory is available for them to sell. Each night after the sales team goes home, Adam logs into Ekos to make the next day’s pick lists for delivery drivers using the map functionality. In the morning, he prints invoices and helps the drivers build pallets with available inventory. The brewery keeps inventory at three locations and Ekos helps them know exactly where each product is. Adam also uses Ekos for invoice creation. “Previously, we were using a system that didn’t sync with QuickBooks,” said Adam. “Every night as I prepared logistics for orders, I had to reproduce every order in two places. Ekos makes all your invoices for you and syncs with QuickBooks. I’m easily saving 5-10 hours per week.” Wolf’s Ridge Brewing, a self-distributing brewery, also relies on Ekos for keg tracking. “Asset tracking is everything. Knowing where our kegs are allows us to provide reliable customer service to our accounts,” said Adam. “We take asset tracking seriously. If you move any product in a keg, you have to stop what you’re doing and move it in Ekos. I’m not sure it would be possible to stay on top of our 3,000+ kegs without Ekos.”