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ERP Handbook + Worksheet

How to Innovate ERP

Innovate business processes with ERP.  Learn how to reduce costs, rapidly respond to customers, and manage growth. The kit also contains a worksheet with challenging questions to help you promote internal innovation to increase productivity, thus sales.

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Inventory Optimization-How ERP Systems can improve Cash Flow

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Simplifying ERP Systems for Wholesale Distribution and Manufacturing series continues with Inventory Optimization for cash flow improvement. An additional Inventory Optimization article is forthcoming.

Key Performance Indicators Dashboard

Crucial to your competitive advantage is the ability to know your financial standing at any given moment and all that effects it.

ERP SimplifiedUsing a completely integrated ERP system you interact daily with key performance indicators (KPIs) via a centralized ERP dashboard. Knowing your financial standing helps you improve cash flow by intelligently interacting with your data so you can take proactive steps.

 

Inventory Optimization Scenario 1:

By reviewing your global inventory from a centralized ERP dashboard you can see an immediate snapshot of KPIs such as:

• Inventory valuation
• Inventory turns
• Fill rates
• What items are under the minimum
• Suggested replenishments

With this KPI information you can proactively take action, avoiding any adverse consequences. Imagine getting a snapshot of suggested replenishments to avoid the expense of back orders.

Inventory Optimization Scenario 2:

By using the advanced, automated tools inherent in an integrated ERP system, buyers can make informed procurement decisions. Buyers also receive assistance with advanced purchasing suggestions when the inventory management system automatically analyzes items that should be ordered using your collected data.

• Previously, inventory management was manual, cumbersome, perhaps even impossible, to accurately gauge your needs. Now, using purchasing calculations presented by your inventory management software, your buyers can utilize the most efficient buying method based on formulas which analyze your historical and forecasted data along with variables such as min/max, safety stock, and daily usage.

The inventory management system analyzes current needs, future needs, and vendor targets for special pricing and available quantity discounts.
• Your buyers are presented with suggestions across different product lines and multiple warehouses to take advantage of buying opportunities.
• Your buyers can analyze the suggestions and, based on any other human-known variables, they can update the suggestions.
• If desired, your buyers can further analyze other vendors you purchase inventory from by drilling down to compare vendor prices, deals, and lead times.
• With a click, buyers create purchase orders and print, fax, or email the POs.
• Along with suggestions, your buyers receive proactive, automated alerts for stock that falls below the reorder point and immediately deals with this exception.

Using your ERP software you optimize your inventory with suggested purchasing and tracking vendor deals and automated alerts. In so doing, you reduce your inventory carrying costs by replenishing inventory to optimal levels while taking advantage of vendor deals.

Wouldn't "What-if?" return on investment scenarios be helpful to allow you to see the effect reducing carrying costs has to your bottom line? ROI scenarios help you analyze and visualize the effects an integrated ERP system with advanced inventory management can have on your profitability.

With their newly gained efficiency, your buyers now have time for additional inventory management on even more profit-oriented tasks such as reducing dead stock, negotiating better prices with suppliers, or reviewing product mix? What else is on your buyer's to-do list?

You may be surprised to see how easy optimizing inventory with ERP can really be. To see how you can increase productivity across all departments and thereby reduce operating costs, sign up for our ERP simplified series. 

ERP Simplified

To further simplify your business, learn more about SaaS ERP, Software-as-a-Service, for distribution,manufacturing, and retail.



Accounts Payable Management-How ERP Systems can improve Cash Flow

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Simplifying ERP Systems for Wholesale Distribution and Manufacturing series continues with Accounts Payable Management for cash flow improvement.

Automated management of A/P invoice prices simplifies this previously manual process. Also, crucial to your competitive advantage is the ability to know at any given moment what you owe and to whom.

Key Performance Indicators Dashboard

ERP Simplified Series

Using a completely integrated ERP system you interact daily with key performance indicators (KPIs) via a centralized ERP dashboard. Knowing your financial standing helps you improve cash flow by intelligently interacting with your data so you can take proactive steps. 

 

Accounts Payable Scenario 1:

By reviewing your global A/P from a centralized ERP dashboard on a daily basis, you can understand your cash flow needs-what you owe and to whom. By sorting each of your payables aging buckets in descending amounts you can see to whom you owe the most money.

• For further scrutiny, you can drill down into each invoice and analyze the detail of purchase orders making up any invoice.
• By reviewing your replenishment needs inside the centralized ERP dashboard, you can prioritize payments to each vendor you use.

Daily management of your accounts payable improves cash flow. It is also keeps your inventory optimized with vendor payment analysis.

Accounts Payable Scenario 2:

You can also verify purchase order pricing against vendor invoices from the same centralized ERP dashboard.

• Upon invoice receipt, your team verifies purchase prices on the invoice against your purchase order.
• You then receive automated notification of price discrepancies based on a variance threshold allowing you to take proactive measures to resolve the discrepancies.
• An A/P voucher gets created allowing you to record the inventory expense in the accounting period in which it was received.
• You can also review open accruals for receipts that have not had a purchase order price verification completed.

Automated management of A/P invoice prices simplifies this previously manual process. It assists you in verifying the vendor's pricing saving you time and potentially, cash, further improving your cash flow.

You may be surprised to see how easy ERP can really be. To see how you can increase productivity and thereby reduce operating costs, sign up for our ERP simplified series.

 

ERP Simplified Series

 



Accounts Receivable Management - ERP Systems Can Improve Cash Flow

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Simplifying ERP Systems for Wholesale Distribution and Manufacturing series continues with Accounts Receivable Management for cash flow improvement.

Crucial to your competitive advantage is the ability to know your financial standing at any given moment and all that effects it. 

Key Performance Indicators Dashboard

ERP Simplified

Using a completely integrated ERP system you interact daily with key performance indicators (KPIs) via a centralized ERP dashboard. Knowing your financial standing helps you improve cash flow by intelligently interacting with your data so you can take proactive steps.  Let's visit some common scenarios that just may sound all too familiar to you.


Accounts Receivable Scenario 1:

You review your global A/R from a centralized ERP dashboard by sorting your oldest receivables aging bucket, say 120 days old (You can define the aging anyway you like.). By sorting it in descending order, you can see which customers are holding up your cash.

• Now, your A/R manager can take proactive measures with customers and post a comment directly in the ERP dashboard about them. For example, "Spoke with customer's A/P manager who said they didn't have the invoices."

• Your A/R manager immediately found the invoices for the balance due by drilling down to the detail directly from the ERP dashboard. The invoices are immediately emailed to the customer who now indicates they will pay them with this week's check run.

• A follow-up "to-do" is posted to be reminded to watch for the payment. 

This scenario is played out for any days-old range you want to start immediate action. The to-do list becomes the pro-active action list for follow-up and collection calls enabling you to stay on top of your A/R to improve cash flow.

Accounts Receivable Scenario 2:

You set automated alerts in the ERP system to hold new orders when a customer's receivables reach your pre-determined amount.

• Your A/R manager, or whomever you select, receives an automated notification that the customer has reached their credit limit and their orders are put on credit hold.

• Now, your A/R manager can take proactive action, by staying on top of all held orders on a daily basis to get payments collected and orders out the door again.

This simple, proactive, automated alert keeps your accounts receivable-thus, your cash flow-from racing out of control. You can stay on top of "at risk" customers before they become a bad debt without somebody manually monitoring the process. As a bonus, you also keep your customer's new orders coming in to help with a positive cash flow.

You may be surprised to see how easy ERP can really be.  To see how you can increase productivity and thereby reduce operating costs, sign up for our ERP simplified series.

 

ERP Simplified Series

 



Simplifying ERP Systems for Wholesale Distribution and Manufacturing

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Are you overwhelmed by the plethora of complex information regarding all facets of ERP systems for your enterprise?

In this series, we will break down ERP software piece by piece, to try to make it, well, simplified. ERP software simplified, is that possible? Let's explore...ERP Simplified

It's complicated... but it doesn't have to be

Your business is not simple, it's complex. So, you set processes to simplify each operational function. Let's look at ERP systems similarly.

Too often, we in the ERP software world take many basics for granted when we talk about ERP systems. We assume everybody knows how ERP software handles these basics and how it benefits them. We hear much more about the advanced functionality in ERP Systems. That's great, really needed, but many people still need to know the good ol' basics, the ones that drive your business and streamline your processes. So, assumptions aside, let's get simplified...

 

Software+Complexity = Business+Simplicity

It's true, ERP software is complicated, but the result is a business that's simplified, automated, and, because of increased productivity, one that runs more efficiently and profitably.

The complexity built into ERP software allows you to tailor implementations to your business, making it easier to access, to use, and... less complex.

In this series, we'll explore how the components of a customized ERP work to simplify your business including:

• Improving cash flow using accounts receivable and credit management, accounts payable management, and inventory management
• Optimizing inventory for maximum profitability
• Increasing sales and marketing effectiveness
• Managing procurement processes more efficiently
• Better material requirements planning
• More useful and productive trading partner relationships and EDI
• Enhanced customer service
• Increased warehouse management efficiencies from automation
• Simpler business processes derived from the right/best ERP implementation for your business

To see how these components work, one by one, and how by combining them, you can increase productivity and thereby reduce operating costs, sign up for our ERP Simplified series. You may be surprised to see how easy ERP can really be.

ERP Simplified Series

 



ERP Handbook: An Executive’s Guide to ERP Implementation

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I admit it. Implementing a new ERP can be a bit like going to the dentist. You don't want to do it before it's done and you don't know why you waited so long to do it after it's over and the pain is gone.

While ERP implementation is never easy, experience tells me there are things you can do to smooth the transition.

Consider this baker's dozen list of suggestions when you get ready to implement, then contact us to guide you through the process:

Appoint End-user Leaders

End-user leaders have a real stake in the outcome of the project. Put them in place from the beginning and throughout the project life cycle to ensure consistent results.

Innovate Back to Front

Necessity is the mother of invention and innovation. Use your end-user leaders to help you define integrated business process improvement objectives.

Never Stop Innovating

You're bound to discover new things as your implementation progresses. Set aside resources to build in those newly-found innovations after your initial go-live.

Keep an Eye on Customizations

Upgrades are inevitable and they often conflict with customizations. Put a procedure in place to decide what customizations you will make and how they will impact future software upgrades.

It Ain't Over 'til It's Over

Have pre- and post-implementation plans in place, including how business process improvements will be addressed.

No Distractions

User training is critical to successful ERP adoption and execution, especially in the early days after you go live. Allocate time away from the desk for user training to get their full attention.

Practice Makes Perfect

Give users pre-implementation practice time to allow them to get comfortable with their processes and the integration.

QA is King

Test every function of the ERP to verify the setup, to determine if further testing is needed, or if modifications are required. Nothing frustrates users more than poor quality assurance testing.

Baby Steps

Break the ERP implementation down into manageable pieces-gaining early success and buy-in from your team is critical.

Make It Your Mantra

ERP implementation is a journey. It's easy for people to lose sight of seemingly intangible goals along the way. Continually communicate the objectives to keep users focused.

KPIs, meet ROI

Extracting key performance indicators (KPIs) from your ERP data early on allows you to accurately assess return on investment (ROI) later.

Time is Money

Surely one of the most important objectives of your ERP implementation is making users more productive. Be sure you understand how user's gained time will be directed towards more productive projects.

The Buddy System

Fear of the unknown is one of the most basic human conditions and a serious impediment to successful ERP implementation. Assign personnel to work with users and troubleshoot and manage the go-live.

 

ERP Simplified Series

You may be surprised to see how easy ERP can really be. To see how you can increase productivity and thereby reduce operating costs, sign up for our ERP simplified series 

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