For today’s retailers, taking care of business means enterprise resource planning (ERP); efficient, tightly integrated systems, including accounting, point of sale (POS), inventory control and forecasting.
“The Top Five Signs Your Business is Ready for an ERP System,” a recent article on ERP provider NetSuite’s website NetSuite.com, provides a quick summary of the problems and frustrations addressed by enterprise resource planning.
NetSuite writes, “Because every company is unique, there’s no single indicator that says, “You need ERP now!” Perhaps your sales forecasts are more guesswork than provable arguments, or determining your warehouse inventory is a painful task, or your failure to keep up with order volume is killing your customer satisfaction.
Here’s a summary of NetSuite’s five signs your business is ready for an ERP system:
1. You Have Lots of Different Software for Different Processes
• Does your accounting staff use one system for receivables and payables while the sales staff uses another system to fulfill customer orders? Is reconciling the two systems a manual process?
• Do your warehouse employees use yet another system to track shipping and receiving?
• “When front- and back-end systems run separately,” NetSuite writes, “it can wreak havoc on the processes that are meant to ensure your company is running smoothly.”
• “ERP software integrates these systems so that every business function relies on a single database,” NetSuite writes. “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.”
2. You Don’t Have Easy Access to Information About Your Business
• In today’s fast-paced world, waiting too long for key performance metrics like orders per day or sales to date to get calculated or reconciled is unacceptable.
• “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,” writes NetSuite. “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.”
3. Accounting Takes Longer and Is More Difficult
• “Often, the first noticeable signs that your company needs ERP software will come from your accounting department,” says NetSuite. “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 is true with financial reporting: an ERP solution can swiftly consolidate or reconcile financial information across systems. “With all financials in a single database, accounting staff won’t have to spend hours cross-posting information, rekeying numbers, or reconciling data manually,” NetSuite writes. “Your accounting staff will be more productive, freeing them to deliver critical reports without delays and frustration.”
4. Sales and the Customer Experience Are Suffering
• Growing companies are challenged by inventory management—making sure that the right products are in the right amount in the right place.
• Separately maintained sales, inventory and customer data creates serious problems. Running out of stock or being unable to track shipments can tarnish a reputation for reliability and service.
• An ERP system can give employees easy access to real time information. Customers may be informed more quickly about the status of orders, shipments, payment status and service issues, and possibly be able to go online and manage their own account and view status info. Warehouse managers can reorder low stocks of popular items.
5. Your IT Is Too Complex and Time-Consuming
• Multiple systems require expensive and time-consuming integration, maintenance, patching and upgrading. Adding more software means adding more complexity, and costs. One huge benefit of cloud-based ERP is simplified IT management.
• Adding more software means adding more complexity, and costs.
As the only full-service POS provider — from software development to franchise incubator to ongoing support — part of Sintel’s commitment to our customers and industry is to share high-impact news.
We form lasting partnerships with our clients that you simply can’t get from a reseller, allowing larger franchises to grow and providing startups the foundation for future growth from the very beginning by acting as a franchise incubator. Our expertise can help you avoid common pitfalls of entry into this thriving but complex industry — including the challenge of using technological advances to attain business goals.
Whether you’re a first-time franchise hopeful, a small business owner or an established chain, it’s always smart to stay on top of technological industry trends.
If you are interested in learning more about Sintel’s POS systems and how our knowledge and support can impact your future success, call us for a complimentary phone consultation.
Read the full NetSuite.com post here.
Sintel Systems is the only full-service provider of tailored Point of Sale systems across retail, restaurant and service industries, including frozen yogurt shops, pizzerias, sushi restaurants, cafés and retail stores.
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