Entry-level software such as MYOB and Quickbooks has done wonders for small businesses. These small business accounting systems let small business perform quickly what was previously a full time bookkeeping and accounting role.
While they are great for start-ups and very small businesses, companies that want to move to the next level must have software in place to support, not hinder, intended growth. They need software that is for more than just accounting. Growing businesses need software that enables enterprise resource planning (ERP).
So what is ERP? ERP is a business management system that integrates most functions of a business, including quoting, planning, manufacturing, service, sales and marketing. It also covers activities like stock control, order tracking, customer service, finance and staff.
Large organisations use ERP systems to manage every aspect of their businesses. But ERP is not just for the big guys! Growing businesses can reap huge rewards from using an ERP system that has been specifically designed for businesses that have outgrown MYOB & Quickbooks.
Five important facts about an ERP system:
Affordable small business softwareSaves you money on administration ERP ties together all facets of your business Provides proper “Big Business” reporting – essential for any size business At the risk of using a cliche..”if you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it”.Is flexible and will grow with you
Business growth is one of the many reasons SMBs break free from the limitations imposed by basic accounting software and seek out a more sophisticated ERP system to manage almost every aspect of their business.
As a business grows and you start adding staff, entry-level accounting systems start to slow down and lose performance. Data corruption also becomes a concern as multiple people start trying to access the same record at the same time. Larger enterprises often opt for SAP – an ERP solution that is often too expensive and complex for SMBs.
An ideal solution for businesses that have outgrown MYOB but are too small for SAP is ERP software tailored specifically to small businesses. Look for systems:
designed with the needs of a growing SMB in minda quality system framework, anda front-end interface to manage business workflow and processes.
This is a substantial move from running small to medium-sized businesses via standard accounting software.
An ERP system can add value to a business by:
providing quick access to all files and records adding security levels on data for better safekeeping enabling multiple access to the same file without corruption of data time and date stamping every entry so you know who did what, and when not slowing down as you add more users, customers and suppliers letting you create rules that suit your particular business.
Flexibility is another huge advantage of an ERP system. As you change a process or procedure in your business, you can change your ERP system’s workflow rules to match your company policy.
Let’s look an typical small business that is benefiting from using ERP. The company is a large copier dealer specialising in digital document production and management technologies. It was similar to many other copier dealers in that it was looking for a single piece of software to manage a large number of clients under contract.
The software had to have a strong accounting back end, copier-specific reports, as well as an interface and functionality suited to a copier dealer. An out-of-date accounting system, combined with multiple spreadsheets and inadequate reporting were just not cutting it for this business.
The business deployed a small business ERP solution and found that it met all its needs. The company experienced immediate benefits from implementing an ERP system specifically designed for SMBs.
For business that have outgrown MYOB & Quickbooks and don’t have an unlimited budget for SAP, look around and evaluate, there may well be a tailored system made specifically to fit neatly into your growing business.