If you’re a business owner, you may have heard many times about how an ERP can help manage your business and workflow processes. But how? And what is an ERP system? Is it worth the time and cost to implement it? Here we will cover exactly what is ERP software and what it could mean for you—and how it can improve and enhance your business.
Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) is a type of business process management software. It uses applications to manage and streamline many of the core processes and functions such as technology, services, and human resources of an organization or enterprise. However, many businesses avoid implementing cloud ERP software because it may seem to be too expensive or complex, especially for small companies. What many businesses don’t know is that there are, in reality, many ERP systems that are more than appropriate for even the smallest company. Many of these businesses often see a quick return on investment with benefits that more than outweigh the initial cost of the ERP implementation.
Built-In Business Processes
ERP systems have built-in processes that define and streamline your workflow, making your procedures faster and easier. These systems allow different departments to share files and collaborate easier as well. Furthermore, since it collects information across the different divisions of the organization, it will be easier for any department to access the information they need.
To make implementation go smoothly, many ERP systems are targeted to specific industries that use build-in best practices. Automatic documentation of processes saves both time and resources while also ensuring that your company is staying within your industry’s unique regulatory compliance standards. It does all these while making it easier for designated people to track and analyze processes and workflows.
Workflow & Business Process Management/Modeling
Workflow capabilities included in many ERP systems allow speed and traceability. This lets you define exactly who is responsible for specific steps in a process, and notifies designated parties when a task needs to be completed to further speed up processes. This can cut hours—even days—spent on common processes. For example, workflow capabilities could be used for item number creation, sales orders, or credit exceptions.
With business process management/modeling (BPM), you could completely eliminate non-value-added steps and prevent employees from spending time on activities that have no impact on your bottom line.
It makes your warehouse management or inventory management more efficient. Improved visibility enables faster, more accurate decisions based on real-time data. For example, an ERP solution allows you to see your entire available inventory so you can quickly respond to changes in orders or the supply chain. Visibility also provides cash flow projections for your business. While it’s possible to maintain this information manually, these methods are difficult, time-consuming, and prone to error.
This is arguably one of the most important factors of an ERP solution. A high level of integration provides speed and accuracy that just can’t be provided by manual systems. The shared language of the common data file within an ERP application makes the system reliable and easy to use, which improves accuracy and reduces errors. Common data also prevents spreadsheet proliferation (or “spreadsheet overload”), a common problem with most companies, and eliminates the need to debate which spreadsheet is most accurate.
To summarize, a properly implemented ERP system streamlines and speeds up business processes, increases accuracy, and pays for itself with increased customer satisfaction and throughput. Our team of dedicated specialists at Southwest Solutions Group can help determine if an ERP system is right for you and your small business or enterprise and we can provide the tools and software you need to make sure it integrates seamlessly into your processes. For more information or to speak with a specialist, call us at 1-866-252-3770 or send us a message today.