Companies have come under pressure since the economic downturn to remove any inefficiencies in their operating procedures. With increasing competition, reduced sales, and higher operating expenses, profit margins are thinner than they’ve ever been. Using an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system is one way to help. An ERP system aids the flow of internal business processes and allows for communication between departments, internal functions, and data.
Here are eight signs that you’re ready for an ERP system or upgrade:
1) Multiple Software Systems for Different Processes
Does your sales, warehousing, and delivery staff all use different programs in their day to day operations? With all of these different systems, how can the business run efficiently?
With multiple systems used across multiple departments, data and efforts are sure to be duplicated. An ERP software integrates these separate processes to work together with a central location for all of your data. Accessing information from a central location allows companies to share analytics quicker and more efficiently.
2) Processes Take Too Long
One of the biggest downfalls of not having an ERP is time wasted managing several fragmented systems. The most common problems we’ve seen is sales representatives managing their information all on their own desktops and without any integration. Working without or having an out of date ERP can put increasing labor burdens on staff to maintain and operate inefficient processes in the business. This forces IT personnel to constantly try and update support systems that aren’t worth the time.
3) Your System is Customized Specifically for You
Specialty one-off systems customized for your business sound like a great idea at first, the downside is that continued customization is necessary for the system to work in the future. Major problems could arise if you need to upgrade or integrate hardware with other software. Often the result is you’re stuck using the same system without upgrades for years until they become obsolete. It’s often better to go with a tried and tested system that is constantly being updated.
4) Your System Doesn’t Integrate
Having all your information in one place allows employees to access and input information easily and efficiently. If your time is spent using multiple systems to enter the same data, yet you can’t find it when you’re done, you’re wasting time and energy.
5) The Excel Hero
Are you an Excel hero? Microsoft Excel is a wonderful program with many uses, the issue is that no two people use Excel the same way. One person’s intricate spreadsheet will be different from another.
Staff will create their own spreadsheets to avoid using company systems. Dual entry becomes a real nightmare and yields inaccurate data with a slow turnaround.
6) Your Business has Outgrown its Processes
Growing your business should be a top priority. ERP’s should be scaleable and designed to keep up with the increased demand a growing business strives for. The organization and automation gained by using a dedicated ERP will give you the tools you need to grow.
7) You’re Unsure about Vital Business Information
What are our inventory levels at? What are our margins on that product? How much should we order for production next week? If you don’t know the answers to these questions then your business could be missing out on sales, over purchasing, or even worse – selling products that cost more to make than they bring in!
8) Your Processes are Too Challenging to Use
The business environment is changing quickly. If you’re collecting and transferring data from multiple sources in an attempt to make sense of data, it could be time to look at an ERP.
Many people don’t realize the amount of dual entry and time they have been wasting without a properly implemented ERP. With proper training and implementation, an ERP can take your business to the next level.