Organization, structure, and a good workflow are important in any business. An Enterprise Resource Planning system (ERP) gives that overall cohesiveness to the management process of your business. It is a software system that helps companies process all their day-to-day activities, such as human resources and analytics, much more effectively than without one. It does so automatically and effectively.
ERP systems work by integrating technology into a would-be analog process, thus increasing efficiency and overall output. It can efficiently link the major aspects of a company such as financials, manufacturing, and supply–all on one platform. ERP platforms like Katana software for manufacturing optimize systems by organizing and tracking various resources and improving value delivery without needing extra staffing and IT costs.
ERP systems are used by large-scale corporations worldwide, but they’re also useful for smaller businesses. They take the stress away from your activities by adding a standard structure to every department of your company.
Why are ERP Systems Important?
Managing a business can be tedious. Imagine organizing every aspect of said business with just human resources. A good ERP system is a business’ backbone. It helps streamline the processes, automating them and simplifying the workflows.
ERP systems were built to combat the lack of structure in any organization. When applied to a business, you get total control and management of your business and its growth process. With this data, you can channel your business in the right direction. In a situation where you notice that your business is not meeting your expectations, not growing, or satisfying your target customers. Then, it might be time to invest in an ERP system. With an ERP system, you get the following:
- Increased performance on all grounds
- Speedy growth
- Higher value delivery
- Reduced costs
- Increased accessibility and security
10 Features to Look Out for in Your ERP System
If you have considered investing in an ERP System, you have probably wondered what you should look out for. While all business needs are not the same, a standard ERP system should have features that adequately address three parts of your business: Financial, Sales, and Operations. Here are some of the most important features that an ERP system should have:
- Accounting and finance
- Customer relationship management
- Supply chain management
- Data analysis
- Process manufacturing
- Inventory management
- Enterprise asset management
- Human Resources
- Business intelligence and analytics
- Tracking and visibility
Accounting and Finance
Accounting is one of the most important features of any ERP system. It allows you to understand the financial status of your business at a glance.
It’s a basic necessity for any business to have accounting and finance features. Without these, the entire business will be crippled in its infancy. So, take this step seriously and invest in an ERP solution that offers robust accounting and finance features.
You want the ability to quickly create invoices, purchase orders (POs), sales orders, financial statements, and other important documents. You should also be able to see your financial information in real-time, so you can make quick decisions on how best to use your resources efficiently.
Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
Customer relationship management (CRM) software is a must-have for businesses. CRM software allows businesses to store information about their customers and manage relationships with them. CRM systems also help companies understand who their customers are so they can better target them with promotions and other marketing efforts. It helps companies better understand their customers, target them more accurately and increase their sales.
Supply Chain Management (SCM)
Supply chain management helps manage the flow of materials, information, and finances between the different stages of production, distribution, and sale of goods. It involves planning, procurement, production, and distribution at all stages to ensure an effective workflow.
Supply chain management is a process used to manage the delivery of products and services from suppliers to customers. The process includes activities such as:
- Logistics; and
- Sales and Marketing.
The supply chain management feature in your ERP comfortably handles all of these and more.
Data analysis is the process of examining data to identify patterns and relationships. It’s used to make business decisions, from product development and marketing to inventory management. Data analysis can be done manually or using an ERP system for more effectiveness. If you’re looking for an ERP system that will help with your data analysis needs, look for one with the following features: A query builder and advanced reporting capabilities.
Process manufacturing involves using a series of operations to produce a finished product. This manufacturing type is used in the food, beverage, and chemical industries.
ERP systems with process manufacturing allow you to track all the steps from start to finish, so your employees can work efficiently according to each step’s requirements. The system will also help you monitor your inventory levels. Hence, no raw materials shortages that could hinder production if suppliers cannot easily deliver them on time.
Many businesses rely on inventory to measure their profits. Inventory management is the process of tracking items, goods, and services in a company. This can be done through a computer program designed to track inventory levels, stock rotation, and sales data. The inventory management system allows you to identify what products sell best or outdated items, so you can make changes to your inventory to improve profits.
Enterprise Asset Management (EAM)
This is also referred to as a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS). If you’re in the manufacturing industry, EAM is an essential tool to help your company save money and improve its processes. An EAM or CMMS is a software application that manages all the assets in your organization, including manufacturing machinery, office equipment, and industrial machinery. You can track and manage your assets more effectively with a solution like this. EAM solutions come with features such as:
- Asset management—Assets are the main focus of this kind of software solution. They help you keep track of the items important to your business, like machinery or supplies used in production.
- Cost tracking—This feature helps organizations understand how much money they spend on maintaining their assets and what costs might be involved with using them over time.
- Inventory management—Inventory tracking is another important function for many businesses using an EAM system. It allows users to keep tabs on their available supplies, so they’re never caught short when they need something urgently.
With this information, you can quickly identify which assets need to be serviced or repaired and schedule preventive maintenance activities so they don’t break down unexpectedly.
Human Resources (HR) Management
HR management is a vital part of any ERP system. It is used to manage employee records, payroll, and benefits. It is used to manage employee training and development. It is also used to manage employee performance and relations. It also keeps track of time off, leaves, and vacations. The HR feature is underrated but crucial to any ERP system because what is a firm without its employees? Thus, HR is a feature that should be included in an ERP system.
Business Intelligence and Analytics
Business intelligence (BI) is a set of techniques and technologies that help collect, store, manage, analyze, and interpret data. BI tools allow companies to get better insights into their business operations. These insights help businesses make better decisions on how they can improve performance or customer service.
Business intelligence makes it possible for companies to answer questions like: What are my customers buying? How much do they spend on each order? Which products are selling the most? How long does it take for them to complete their transactions?
Tracking and Visibility
Tracking and visibility are two essential features that your ERP system must have. Tracking helps you see what’s happening in your business at any time. It lets you know how much inventory you have, where it is located, who sold it, what price was charged, and how much money was made from that sale.
On the other hand, visibility helps you to manage your inventory better. With visibility, you can see what products are selling better than others so that you can allocate more of those products for future sales. You can also see which products are not selling well so that you can decide whether or not to drop them from your inventory altogether or maybe just change their pricing strategy a bit.
There are many different types of ERP systems, but they all have the same goal: to help your business run smoothly and efficiently. A good ERP system should be able to handle all the tasks you need while maintaining efficiency. As a manufacturer, you need an ERP system that can handle your supply chain, production planning and scheduling, sales, accounting and finance, human resources, and more. If you’re looking for an excellent software solution to help manage your company’s processes, then it’s important that you choose a system that has all of the above-mentioned features.