Getting to Know Your Operations with an ERP
Having an in-depth understanding of your essential business processes via high quality and organized data has never been more important. Luckily, today as we have access to incredible solutions, such as ERPs, that enable us to take an almost limitless volume of enterprise wide information and to turn it into something to make actionable decisions.
At each stage of your product’s journey to its final destination, an ERP can help you gain valuable knowledge about the different arms of your retail business and how they are working together (or impeding each other). It can use this information to ‘learn’ and automate processes to become more efficient and allow employees to focus on key business tasks. Make sure to select an ERP solution that has add-on capabilities to offer additional features specific to your industry.
In this post, we’re looking at places where you can expect to gain major operational insights, including:
To gain better control over your budgets and cash flow, you need real-time visibility that an ERP solution provides. This can mean anything; from recommendations on when to pay vendors to get the best discounts to automatically reconciling and organizing payments for reporting.
For more efficient store operations, accurate information from POS about inventory and products is essential. Any ERP should be cloud-based, so that all your distributed locations are synced in real time, and all the right people have access to the data necessary to make key decisions anytime, anywhere. Some additional information that your ERP should be able to collect for you includes:
- Detailed customer profiles, including cross channel order history
- Stock counts and essential inventory statistics
- Employee time registration
- Relevant BI reports for each location, such as sales by hour, by cashier etc
From setting up role-based permissions to creating a personalized and intuitive employee experience, having more is key. One example of how better operational understanding is impactful can be seen in workforce scheduling. By having an ERP that tracks peak hours of foot traffic or customer service requests, you can plan schedules to accommodate fluxes of need at different times.
CRM and Customer Engagement:
Maintaining accurate customer records across all interaction points can help you to not only build an improved customer experience but to also get a greater overall understanding of who your buyer really is. An ERP solution can help to collect this information via buyer profiles that include valuable information about the customer, from recent sales to brand interactions on social networks, and help your business make better choices about what, how and where to sell.
Retail apps and eCommerce:
Having an effective multichannel retail strategy where your products are available across different devices and payment methods, comes about from accurate and data-driven decisions. Data about how your customers are interacting with you in each location can help you spot any problems or discrepancies between locations - leading to a more consistent buying experience for your customer. Having centralized sales information from all channels in a single location is also essential for drawing conclusions about what is and isn’t working in your digital strategy. And besides, with customers spending 66% of their online time with retailers on their smartphones, getting as much info as possible is a necessity.
By having an ERP to help you organize and collect your data, you can obtain a superior understanding of every single operation in your retail business - leading to better daily and long term decision making. If you’re interested in learning more about how an ERP could be the right step for your retail business, make sure to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Disclaimer: The views expressed here are solely those of the author in his private capacity and do not in any way represent the views of Systems Limited, or any other entity related to Systems Limited.