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You’ve got irate customers on the line, seemingly every five minutes. Deliveries are late – again. And each month, you’re struggling to reconcile your accounts or inventory, having to plough through a myriad of handwritten and/or software-made reports from different sections of your business.
If this situation in any way resembles your own, you’ve no doubt considered that there must be a better way of getting and staying on top of things.
There is – in the form of Enterprise Resource Planning, or ERP, and the software and systems that enable it. Here are ten compelling reasons why an ERP solution would be just the thing for you.
1. Automating Essential Processes
An effective ERP solution will empower you to focus on the more crucial aspects of your business – like your core mission and objectives, developing your brand, swelling your coffers, quality control, growth, and innovation.
Enterprise Resource Planning can do this by automating all the mundane and repetitive tasks and processes that would otherwise deplete your Human Resources, time, and creative energy.
2. Keeping Track Of Your Inventory Or Portfolio
If you have a lot of different product or service offerings to juggle, part of the challenge of running your business will be overseeing the continued evolution and effective delivery of each of them. This includes quality control, managing your inventory or portfolio of services, and the maintenance of essential supply chains and touch points with your customers.
An ERP solution will provide improved visibility over the entire scale of your enterprise and operations, making it much easier to monitor and manage these aspects of your business.
3. Clarifying Audit Trails
Having a unified system for co-ordinating and aggregating inputs from the various transactions across your enterprise can greatly clarify the process of reconciling your financial accounts, charting audit trails, and compiling meaningful reports – and a well-configured ERP solution provides the tools required to do this.
What’s more, all your relevant information is centralised, allowing access to it for all your stakeholders who need it.
4. Increasing Operational Efficiency
Development and production processes, internal and external communications, service and product delivery, information and technical support: all of these can be streamlined and co-ordinated by a well-tuned ERP solution. And the end result will be a dramatic improvement in business productivity, and the overall efficiency of your business operations.
5. Enabling Decision-Making In Real Time
One of the core principles of Enterprise Resource Planning is the centralisation of data from all streams of an enterprise into a single repository. This not only gives your workers access to a common pool of information from which to work – it also gives managers and decision makers instantaneous access to the data they need to inform the activities that steer an enterprise on an innovative and competitive course.
With the analytic and reporting capabilities of today’s breed of Business Intelligence (BI) software, an ERP solution can provide the tools required to react to changing market conditions and internal issues in real time.
6. Improving The Customer Experience
Consumers in today’s market have got used to operating in an environment where instant gratification, knowledge on tap, and support and service 24/7 are the norm, rather than the exception. They don’t like waiting for orders to be filled, or for their current concerns to be pushed to the back of an On Hold queue.
An ERP solution makes it possible to streamline and segment your customer data, so that individual accounts are always associated with their relevant transaction histories, customer preferences, demographic and other information. So comprehensive customer records can be pulled up at the click of a button, greatly speeding the resolution of transactions or service issues, and enhancing the customer experience.
7. Better Cost Management
With greater visibility into the overall operations of your business, and access to a centralised pool of data concerning individual processes and their associated expenditures, an ERP solution offers real-time information and insight into where your money is going, and why. This makes for better management of known costs, and the capability to oversee resources, departments, and processes that might introduce unanticipated ones.
8. Managing Multiple Departments Or Sites
With a centralised database of enterprise assets and operations, and the connectivity of the web, mobile applications, and the cloud, an ERP solution allows even the most geographically dispersed or organisationally complex enterprises to readily manage and co-ordinate the activities of its people and assets. This empowers businesses to manage and streamline their operations over multiple departments, or physical and virtual sites.
9. Improved Monitoring And Reporting
These days, top of the line data analytics and Business Intelligence tools are a standard component of most Enterprise Resource Planning solutions. These modules enable real or near real-time monitoring and analysis of information from all streams of an enterprise. They also typically include enhanced tools for visualising and reporting on the results of that analysis.
This makes legible, easy to understand graphs, charts, and text available to relevant stakeholders of a business, for more effective decision making and auditing.
10. Best Practices Implementation And Compliance
A central repository of enterprise data and a central hub for management makes it a straightforward process to set and enforce policies governing common business practices and methodologies for an enterprise. These might include security protocols, financial and operational best practices, and the enterprise-wide dissemination of industry standards and regulations – a real plus for businesses required to operate under specific legal frameworks or regulatory compliance regimes.
An ERP solution can play a major role in this, ensuring compliance and best practices, and keeping enterprises free of the risks and penalties associated with non-compliance.