5 Ways ERP Can Ease Supply Chain Management

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ERP can be both overwhelming and confusing if you’re not ‘down with the lingo’.

And if you happen to Google around for a definite answer, you may actually find that there are several different definitions of Enterprise Resource Planning software and a plethora of ways that it can benefit your business. While these definitions can be confusing for many, the very same variations can also put the spotlight on the flexibility that makes ERP such a powerful tool for any size of business, regardless of industry. In fact, even your most basic ERP solutions consist of powerful and strategic process management tools and applications –  the right software can be used to manage data, keep track of your day-to-day processes, supply chains and more.

Let’s take a closer look at how ERP can accelerate your growth in 2019.

What are the Benefits of ERP?

In a highly competitive business environment, most modern companies require a reliable and efficient method of storing, processing and accessing data. This is where enterprise resource planning software proves especially useful. An ERP solution works by seamlessly integrating every facet of your day-to-day operations into a single comprehensive data centre, thereby making vital data accessible to all authorized individuals within your business.

In addition, having a dependable and effective ERP in place will allow you to streamline and automate the tasks and processes that would otherwise be too time-consuming to do manually. Resultingly, your employees will become more efficient, and you’ll be able to save on both time and resources. The added bonus is that the solution will enable teams and stakeholders to get real-time visibility into the ins and outs of their day-to-day operations.

ERP’s impact on the supply chain management process

Anyone running an organisations knows that businesses must learn to evolve and adapt to the ever-changing industry in order to remain agile and competitive. To aid with this, companies can automate and streamline the majority of their operations across multiple departments, such as

  • Accounting
  • Material management
  • Quality control
  • Production
  • Human resources
  • Distribution
  • Sales

Regardless of your industry, your supply chain ecosystem will normally consist of manufacturers, suppliers, distributors, resellers/retailers, and customers. In other words, managing your supply chain well typically involves meticulous planning, execution, control, and monitoring of all supply chain activities.

The ultimate goal will be to meet customer demands in the most efficient and practical way possible.

A good ERP will add value to the supply chain as a whole, starting from the material procurement process and manufacturing all the way to the customer product delivery process and billing. Rich on features, your ERP has the power to coordinate and integrate three core flows in the supply chain process: the information flows, financial flows, and material flows.

Integrate your processes with ERP

In order to fully grasp the value of ERP, you must first consider all the integral processes that you deal with when running your business.

Business processes, such as human resources, inventory and order management, supply chain management, and customer relationship management all require a smart approach and good resource planning to work together coherently. With a good ERP solution at hand, you can integrate all these processes into a single cohesive system, thereby avoiding siloed data. Naturally, this allows for more streamlined processes and information sharing across all levels of your organisation.

One of the core features of ERP software is the shared database that serves a multitude of functions, catering to different departments at the same time. This means that your HR department will have as much use of the ERP as the accounting department.

Running a successful business requires accurate and reliable flow of information across all departments. And this is one of the main benefits an ERP can offer your business.

Synchronise your reporting with ERP

Instead of having your staff take on more responsibility by maintaining their own separate databases and spreadsheets – which again must be combined with other data to generate reports – an ERP can collect and combine your entire database in order to maintain accurate and easily accessible data for all employees.

Imagine that you have sales orders automatically streaming through your financial system without any manual input. Your order management division will have a quicker and more efficient time processing those orders. As a result, your finance department will be able to finalise the transactions and close the books much faster.

Increase data management

Your ERP should be a natural extension to your existing business process tools.

Essentially, it should provide a comprehensive management system that fully integrates and manages all your day-to-day operations and information flows in one accessible system. We often see that a common reason for why a number of companies fail to expand and grow is due to that they’re unable to meet the growing customer demand – this is often due to lack of proper information, which again delays the supply chain functions.

The role of ERP is to keep all integral data within the company more accessible, thereby ensuring complete visibility. A good software solutions will easily let all departments access accurate and comprehensive data anytime, anywhere.

Aid supply chain planning

ERP systems can also benefit the supply chain planning process.

In short, this is the process of choosing the appropriate marketing channels, promotion, and the regulations and management of stock quantities and inventory needed to ensure the production of your goods. Essentially, you need supply chain planning to ensure that the production meets consumer demands.

ERP for vendor performance evaluation

Lastly, an ERP will make it easier for your organisation to properly evaluate the performance of your vendors. The solution allow them to quantify the qualitative and quantitative factors of different vendors, which in turn facilitate the process of choosing the right partners, suppliers, distributors, and retailers in the chain.

Find your next ERP solution

In short, a good ERP system will enable you to make better decisions and can help accelerate your growth in 2019. Are you ready to take the next step?

Our dedicated ERP experts here at YourShortlist can help you navigate the software market and find a shortlist of vendors suited to your requirements. And the best thing – our advice is completely free.