Megaware KeelGuard, a provider of specialized boat protection products: KeelGuard®, PontoonGuard®, SkegGuard®, ScuffBuster®, FlexStep Pro® and BatteryGuard™ implemented Descartes OzLink™ to automate and streamline its shipping process in response to rapidly increasing growth. Integrated with UPS WorldShip and QuickBooks®, the Descartes solution demonstrated immediate benefit, increasing order fulfillment speed and accuracy while eliminating the burden on office and warehouse staff.

The Challenge

While Megaware had been on a steady growth trajectory, its ecommerce business rocketed to unprecedented heights when the pandemic hit and consumers turned to outdoor pursuits in response to quarantine fatigue. In addition to growth in large orders from retailers and distributors, small parcel orders increased from 20-30 per day to 100 daily orders. Prior to the pandemic, the boat protection specialist relied on manual order fulfillment processes that were hampering growth. The office and warehouse team were working around the clock to process and ship orders, bogged down by tedious, error-prone data input requirements and an inefficient manual shipping workflow. Megaware was faced with the option of hiring additional staff or expediting fulfillment through automation.

“The productivity gains we’ve realized from Descartes OzLink have enabled us to have a massively record breaking year in 2020—and we’re just continuing to grow. With a lean warehouse team, we’re able to easily manage high volumes of shipments from our booming online business, as well as an increase in our distributor and retail orders. We’re thrilled!”

Ryan Shumway, Operations Manager, Megaware KeelGuard Boilerplate

In 1992, the Utah-based Megaware developed Keel Guard, the industry’s first patented, do-it-yourself keel protector. Megaware KeelGuard® continues to lead the industry in engineering, design and quality with its line of premier boat protection products and accessories. 

The Solution: Automation Expedites Order Fulfillment

With a shipping bottleneck that saw dedicated Megaware employees working 12-15–hour days to meet order demands, the company implemented Descartes OzLink to automate and accelerate inefficient manual shipping processes. Integrated seamlessly with QuickBooks® and UPS WorldShip, the Descartes solution eliminated time-consuming repetitive order entry steps and the back-and-forth workflow that warehouse staff endured as they sorted through boxes trying to match up labels to the right shipment.

“We were having to input order information three separate times: entering it into QuickBooks, the UPS system, and then typing the UPS tracking number on all invoices before emailing to the customer. We were working countless extra hours and had to continually double check everything we did,” explained Nancy Millward, Megaware’s Office Manager. “With Descartes OzLink, we save hours and hours of time because we just enter the order info once and it automatically syncs with QuickBooks and UPS WorldShip, prints the labels, and emails the customer. It’s kind of awesome; it’s very awesome actually!”

Descartes OzLink delivered immediate operational benefits, expanding shipping capacity while increasing order accuracy. “If we’d been forced to hire staff, training would’ve taken somebody who knows what they’re doing away from their duties and it could be days, weeks, or months before that new hire is really going to be as productive as we need,” said Ryan Shumway, Operations Manager at Megaware. “With the Descartes solution, we had immediate results. The implementation was fast and seamless and we were able to hit the ground running.”

Millward added, “This has been the smoothest technology transition that we’ve ever done. The Descartes team was amazing to work with.”

The Results

Increased Shipping Capacity

Descartes OzLink, fully integrated with QuickBooks and UPS WorldShip, enabled Megaware to automate its shipping and order fulfillment processes to streamline workflow, increase efficiency, and support continued business growth.

Easy Implementation with Immediate ROI

The Descartes team facilitated a smooth and rapid rollout of Descartes OzLink that enabled Megaware to start realizing operational benefits immediately, from reducing unnecessarily repetitive data entry to eliminating inefficient labeling and shipping processes.

No Additional Hiring or Training

Despite small parcel online daily orders increasing from 20-30 to ~100, the automated Descartes solution enabled Megaware to meet the increased shipping demands without the need to hire and train additional staff, relying instead on a lean office and warehouse team.

Improved Order Accuracy

By eliminating manual order entry, streamlining shipping workflows (including automated label generation), and seamless UPS and other carrier integration, Descartes OzLink ensures customers receive the correct order on time, even in the face of escalating order volumes.

Success Story
Megaware KeelGuard

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