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Checklist: what you need to know about your business before investing in ERP platforms

Written by FHL

22 | 06 | 21

4 minute read

Company leaders need to better understand their business outcomes and desired strategy before entertaining any thoughts of trying to accelerate those plans by investing in new technology. Here, we take a look at the sort of fundamental business insights that are emerging in the cloud era, which will help you build a successful growth strategy.

When delivered by the right cloud-based ERP platform, these insights can be used to underpin and accelerate your business' growth.

We call it our business visibility checklist.

 

Benchmark with KPIs

Business owners and leaders will need to set a strategy underpinned by performance targets, with KPIs based on data from internal processes or departmental operations.

Although the plans you create for the next few years may not be perfect, this approach gives business units or different teams a real focus on their performance goals. By setting data-driven indicators for success, you can start to identify necessary improvements in your business systems to boost performance and find ways to reduce costs.

This methodology will also help you better identify risks to the business, any potential problems with customers, or particular departments and where new revenue opportunities lie. Therefore, these can be more effectively assessed and actioned at an earlier stage.

 

Build smarter processes to boost and measure performance

Many departments continue to use and struggle with manual processes such as emailing departmental updates as spreadsheets for reporting. However, by reviewing your processes and identifying the gaps or points of failure, you can identify a priority list of processes that can be re-engineered, improved, automated and then brought into your future ERP system.

This strategic process of digitisation not only saves on internal resources for reporting and administrative work, but most importantly, enables you to harvest data from processes for analysis by your Business Intelligence (BI) and ERP platforms. Eventually, your business will be able to add and integrate information streams from new processes, departments, suppliers and ultimately, across the supply chain to have richer insights into your operations.

 

Seek new customer insights

Improving insight into your customers will not only enhance your customer service capabilities, but will shed greater light onto your business’ processes and performance. Different methods will naturally suit different types of organisation but generally speaking, customer-facing teams will run Net Promoter Score systems, post-sale questionnaires, instant satisfaction surveys as well as regularly reviewing accounts.

The more that your customer base’s sentiment and performance indicators can be captured as data, standardised, modelled and analysed, the better-placed the business will be to set sales, customer retention and team performance targets.

 

Gain business intelligence

Mid-range firms have long made use of BI tools to provide more insight into sales, customer satisfaction and business processes to support timely decision-making.

Platforms such as NetSuite cloud ERP incorporate BI tools, providing senior managers and departmental teams with deeper, real-time insights from a wider range of data streams. In an age of cloud-based applications, your business has the scope to bring in direct feedback from suppliers, or key points in the supply chain, to help your teams gain further insights, identify trends and revenue opportunities much earlier.

 

Make decisions with more data sets

Finally, there is a need to centralise your data in one place to achieve optimum visibility and simplify your decision-making.

Drawing on today’s interconnected businesses, supply chains and cloud-based ERP systems, company managers have an unparalleled opportunity to get their clearest picture of customers and operations yet. This will enable organisations to assess performance and business risks at any one time.

Companies that use centralised, cloud-based ERP systems, are able to combine all the data sets from different CRM, purchasing, invoicing, supplier management and accounting systems. In addition to this, these tools are available to them at any location that has an internet connection. Therefore, decision-makers do not have to be office-based or held back by restrictions on staff’s movement anymore.

 

This data-driven ‘single version of the truth’ gives your business real-time understanding of operations while enabling wider and deeper collaborations across the entire business.

To learn more about how you can gain greater insights and achieve full visibility into your organisation by upgrading to a cloud-based ERP, get in touch.

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