How Is ERP Software Useful For Entrepreneurs?
ERP or Enterprise Resource Planning has become a very popular term among Entrepreneurs. It is a management software that helps in managing production, intermediate processing and categorising managerial aspects. One of the major features of this software is the nursing of resources between stakeholders. All the features are bundled into a single interactive DB management system.
An ERP can be used across various domains, like manufacturing, retail, human resources, education, farming and many more. Earlier there was not much option for small entrepreneurs to get an ERP system but today the situation has changed. As the business grows, it ends up creating many fragmented chunks of business structure made up of several independent components. The most common components are finance, catalogue, sales, payroll and others.
What Do Small Businesses Need to Understand About ERP?
In a small company, an employee performs many roles as per the requirement. There is not much time to go through multiple spreadsheets and a ton of raw data. Doing so will seriously impact the efficiency of the organisation. The ERP system helps small entrepreneurs manage these routine tasks easily. Many of the small key tasks like processing, manufacturing and finance can be automated.
One thing to note here is that you need proper planning before you go ahead with this ERP system setup because it is going to connect all the departments of the company. If something fails or issues occur, you should be able to restore to the previous. To achieve this, there should be a standard implementation.
Benefits Of ERP For Entrepreneurs
- Integration of multiple departments which work as a single unit as opposed to each department having its own system.
- All required data are shared and maintained across all departments eliminating the need to redundantly process and import/export data.
- Eliminating redundancy also removes common errors, reduces human intervention and increases productivity.
- Real-time data allows time-sensitive decisions to be made for marketing and management purposes to make an important decision.
- The overall picture helps in better control and decision-making process using predictive analytics
- With the increase of uniformity and centralization, employees can focus better on taking a business decision and managing workload.
Which Signs Indicate That Your Business Needs an ERP?
In the beginning, all the entrepreneurs kick start a company with bare minimum resources. A handful of employees, small accounting software, some spreadsheet networks and a few more. As the business expands, transactions increase, and more raw data comes in, it becomes more difficult. A large volume of data needs to be processed within a short time frame. Routine tasks take up much more time like punching in sales data, purchase orders from multiple clients, inventory availability and many more.
Things get even more complicated if all the details are dispersed in multiple databases. The files need to be imported and exported frequently from one software to another software. This not only wastes time but is also prone to error.
ERP offers a solution to all these problems by automating the manual tasks and giving more time for actual business. Also, everything is centralised, so you don’t need to use different file types and there is never a compatibility issue.
Here is how the ideal ERP system would take care of the processes
- Client Relation Management (CRM)
- Processing orders generated (Supply and Catalogue Management)
- Billing and Payment Management (Accounting)
You should consider getting an ERP-
- When you are unable to manage the different chunks of the organization
- You make use of human prediction on a huge dataset
- When you rely on spreadsheets too much
- If there is no coordination among the different departments and often delay in order fulfilment
What Is the Right Choice of ERP?
The question itself is wrong. You cannot answer it as an objective question. All the organisations have their own needs and budget. Each business is different and has a unique customer base and the services they offer. A good ERP must be chosen only after close examination of the requirements, budget, services and scale of the company.
However, there are few things you must keep in mind while choosing an ERP module. It should have business management tools like CRM, hosting space, shipping manager and a few more. ERP’s offer a lot of features, but you don’t need all of them. As a small business, you want to take up something affordable and quick which gets things done for you. Microsoft ERP products are available in for small, mid to enterprise level organization. Microsoft has huge amount of customer which enable it upgrade its products more frequent than other competitors.
Points to keep in mind while choosing ERP
- Ease of Use
- Cloud or On-premise Platform
- Frequency of Upgrading
- Security Measures
- Support Service
- Total Cost of Ownership
Final Words Considering all these features, advantages, and points, an Entrepreneur or person so authorised into that designation shall get an ERP System for its business. Understand the points and also the aforementioned indications, and make the right decision for your business.