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 it? Is it worth the time and cost to implement it? Here we will cover exactly what an ERP is 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 processes and functions such as technology, services, and human resources. However, many businesses avoid implementing 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.
Built-In Business Processes
ERP systems have built-in processes that define and streamline your workflow, making your procedures faster and easier. 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.
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.
Improved visibility enables faster, more accurate decisions based on real-time data. For example, an ERP allows you to see your entire available inventory so you can quickly respond to changes in orders. 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. 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 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 business 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 1-800-803-1083 or send us a message today.