Amsterdam Fashion Institute

The Amsterdam Fashion Institute (AMFI) prepares students for a career in the (international) fashion world. Fashion is serious business. Behind the facade of luxury and glamor hides one of the largest and most dynamic world industries. The world of fashion is housed at AMFI in a four-year full-time higher professional education program with three specializations: Fashion & Design, Fashion & Management, and Fashion & Branding. Unique within the program is the “Reality School” concept with the fashion brand iNDiViDUALS. FlowFabric makes this real-life experience possible. For students, this means that they do not take a leap of faith after their education but have a head start in the fashion world.

In search of a smaller size?

iNDiViDUALS is anything but a fictional fashion brand. It has a shop on the Spui in Amsterdam and two sales points in Arnhem and Utrecht. Students lead this brand. Each semester a new group of three times 8 students starts who is responsible for the brand’s success. In this way, the practice is approached, but the students put everything around this brand into practice. This is an essential objective that Carolina van Gerven-Veth, teacher and coordinator of the second year, works on daily. She is convinced that it is good for students to learn something from IT systems used in the professional field during their training. However, Microsoft’s initial ERP system chosen for this turned out to be a bit too big.

In search of a smaller size
“The previous system was focused on major fashion brands and was complete. That sounds tempting, but it turned out to be needlessly complex. We had to put in a lot of data to get valuable information out of it. As a result, something as simple as creating an invoice took a long time. And then you have a clear-sounding board for students.

 

They don’t hide when something is cumbersome,” laughs Carolina. “They were right. We no longer wanted unnecessary functionality but wanted a system that was as realistic as possible. It’s about the relevant application for our students. Besides, the new system had to be easy to maintain and explain.”

It was a pleasant coincidence that Carolina bumped into FlowFabric at Texpress in Germany in 2012 and, above all, that there was an immediate click. “At that time, FlowFabric already invested in the development of a Product Data Management (PDM) system and Process Lifecycle Management (PLM) system. With this, users benefit from centralized product information and a clear view of all steps’ status in the process. This approached what we were looking for. The flexibility of the IT system turned out to be key. After all, it must fit well into a curriculum and not work strictly according to brand standards. The FlowFabric team thinks in terms of possibilities, and during the conversation, my wishes suddenly became feasible. They decided to help us on the condition that the students would continue to give their unvarnished feedback.”

PDM & PLM

 

Product Data and Process Lifecycle Management

“Every semester, the managers complete the previous collection production and start sampling the new collection. The designers start with a visit to Paris to discover new fabrics and get ideas. And then the whole of fabric and haberdashery has to be purchased. Already in this phase, all product details are housed in the FlowFabric application. Then the design, production, sales, and invoicing take place. The basic package of FlowFabric has been adapted to iNDiViDUALS so that the system optimally supports the processes and associated task and role division. The entire process has now become one workflow.”

One workflow from fabric to invoice
The core of the system’s success is that data can flow and thus supports the entire process. “We now have a database with all basic data, such as seasons, colors, fabrics, sizes, and collection names. Based on this, the “recipes” can be put together, the models and requirements can be calculated. During the design phase, data is used for custom plans and specifications. Based on this, calculations are made for a good retail price, but the data is also used for branding the collection. Think of merchandising and sample sales, et cetera.”

Central database
The central database created with the new system offered starting points for further optimization. “The latest release helps students accelerate ……..

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