Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Top Five Signs Your Business Is Ready for an ERP System

It's taking longer and longer to reconcile financials at the end of the day, month or year. The sales forecasts made are based more on guesswork than solid figures. Your business is having trouble, keeping up with its order volume and hence customer satisfaction is faltering. There is no idea on how much inventory is there in the warehouse and is a pain to find out. If this sounds like to be happening in your business or close to it, then it is time to go for ERP
Let us go slightly into the five major symptoms which can lead to disaster without ERP implementation.

Lots of Different Software for Different Processes

When various front- and back-end systems run separately, it can wreak havoc on the processes that are meant to ensure your company is running smoothly. Without accurate data from sales, inventory management may suffer, while not having the latest information from accounting can trigger a ripple effect on everything from marketing budgets to payroll.
ERP software integrates these systems so that every business function relies on a single database. With one source of information that contains accurate, real-time data, an ERP solution breaks up information logjams, helps staff make better decisions more quickly and frees up their time to work on more high-value exercises like helping the business grow even faster.

Don't Have Easy Access to Information About Your Business

The pace of business is faster than ever before, which means employees across your company need immediate access to key data. With an ERP solution, executives can get a holistic view of business operations at any time, while other staff can get the information they need to do their jobs more effectively. For example, sales representatives should be able to view a customer's full transaction history and more proactively improve renewal rates while increasing upsell and cross-sell opportunities.

Accounting Takes Longer and Is More Difficult

Often, the first noticeable signs that your company needs ERP software will come from your accounting department. If your employees rely on paper-based invoices and sales orders and spend hours every week manually entering them into different accounting and sales systems, you need to consider how much time is being wasted on tasks that ERP software can handle in an instant.
The same goes for financial reporting. If it takes ages to consolidate or reconcile financial information across systems and through countless spreadsheets, an ERP solution can make a significant impact. With all financials in a single database, accounting staff won't have to spend hours cross-posting information, rekeying numbers, or reconciling data manually. Your accounting staff will be more productive, freeing them to deliver critical reports without delays and frustration. Comrade and other ERP based software cure these critical problems to a great level.

Sales and the Customer Experience Are Suffering

As companies grow, one of their biggest challenges is often inventory management. Ensuring that the right amount of products is in the right location at the right time is a vital part of business operations.
When sales, inventory and customer data are maintained separately, it can create serious problems across your company. If you run out of a popular product, sales will be off until the next shipment arrives. Meanwhile, if a customer calls to inquire about an order and employees can't track it to see if it's been shipped or if it's even in stock your company will start to develop a poor reputation for reliability and service.
With an ERP system, on the other hand, staff in every department will have access to the same, up-to-the-minute information. Customer-facing reps should be able to answer customers questions about order and shipping status, payment status, service issues, etc., without having to hang up the phone and check with another department. Better yet, customers should be able to simply go online to their account and view status information. Meanwhile, the warehouse manager can see that stock is getting low and can reorder.

IT Is Too Complex and Time-Consuming

One of the biggest downsides of having multiple systems across your business is that IT management can become a nightmare. Customizing these systems, integrating them and maintaining them with patches and upgrades can be complex, costly and sap critical time and resources.
If your patchwork of systems includes on-premise, legacy business software, system upgrades can be more trouble than they're worth. Not only are these updates expensive and time-consuming, but they may also undo customizations implemented by IT staff. Given that, it's no surprise that two-thirds of mid-size businesses are running outdated versions of their business software.
Rather than adding more software and complexity to an already ineffective system, ERP technology can give you the agility to respond to changing business needs rapidly. That's why selecting a cloud-based ERP provider like NetSuite is critical. With NetSuite, system updates are no longer an issue, and new functions are easy to add as your business grows and changes.