Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) is a software driven solution to the age-old problem of company time being lost to daily administrative tasks. Increasingly able and less complex, easier to use automation software has made ERP among the most innovative yet simple ways you can save your business both time and money. Read on to find out how ERP could help your business.
Information integration is mainly useful for reviewing financial performance. A large business will have financial information such as revenue numbers, salaries, sales etc., from a number of different departments and individuals. ERP allows you to synthesize this information into a report that gives a fuller and more accurate picture of your company’s overall performance.
Integrating information in real time also allows for some serious efficiency gains. Consider a business that has customer orders to fulfill, a furniture business for example. By keeping all the information relating to each customer order on a single standardized (more on that in a moment) system it becomes much easier to track the order and its progress. In turn, this also makes it much easier to plan stock levels and calculate expected sales figures.
For manufacturing companies, integrating information on to a single ERP system has several benefits. For example, ERP systems usually come with methods pre-installed for automating certain aspects of the manufacturing process. Standardizing as much of the manufacturing process as possible allows for significant savings in terms of both time and money.
For other types of business, standardizing information to particular formats makes it more accessible, particularly if it has to be shared with anyone either outside the company or working with them on a temporary basis. For industries where there is a good deal of work between competitors within the industry, standardizing information allows a common format to develop and thus encourages and simplifies cooperation between businesses.
Some companies that do not use ERP systems find that what should be simple tasks, such as sharing information between departments, are needlessly complex. This is often a result of each department using different software systems to one another and this has a bigger impact on day-to-day operations than one might initially think. Using a single, integrated, standardized ERP system means that different departments can access and edit the same databases and so automatically share information with one another.
Automation is at the heart of ERP and is its biggest selling point. Automating administrative and financial tasks, including what is usually referred to as ‘end-of-day’ tasks, saves a considerable amount of time and, after all, time is money! Other areas that make good targets for automation are payroll, ordering, and customer service tasks.
Enterprise resource planning allows businesses, large and small alike, to make considerable savings by standardizing software systems and data formats between various departments and for a variety of different tasks.