My ERP Musings

ERP, ERP, some CRM and more ERP

Keeping Your Business Running Smoothly

In the world of business, it doesn’t take long for a business to get to a level of complexity where management starts to become an issue. Luckily in modern business there are a huge number of business tools to help companies manage and cope with the challenges which are presented as a business grows. These tools vary a huge amount in their purpose, effectiveness and cost however, so looking for example at some of the more common ones; CRM and ERP systems:

CRM is customer relationship management software, which is software centred around keeping track of clients, any contact made with them and any information relating to their account. CRM systems are particularly important in a business where multiple points of contact are possible for a single client as this gives you a single, up to date source of information for each client helping speed up response time, provide a better more customer focused service and save time for your workforce; a very powerful tool indeed!

ERP is enterprise resource planning, often used in conjunction with a CRM package. This helps to keep track of orders, workloads, logistics and predict material requirements in the case of manufacturing to keep large supply chains running smoothly, equally important in some businesses but for completely different reasons.

Of course in business there isn’t ever a one solution fits all way to approach CRM or ERP for example. Since so many businesses are run in different ways with very different business processes; having a robust tool which you can modify and rework to function alongside your existing business processes can be very important and should be a big factor in picking business tools. The downside of more robust systems generally is, the more complex and changeable a tool is; the more initial setup will be required, which takes time and thus money to get right.

A good way to help mitigate large setup costs is to find a system reseller who specialise in your business vertical. Chances are they will have a framework already suited to your business, and they’ll better understand how your business works for any changes you may want made. This can save a huge amount of time for you and save a lot of money since they will likely get the system right faster!

Another thing worth considering is cloud based systems. CRM cloud software for example is essentially one which is hosted online via a third party allowing you to get access potentially from anywhere there is internet. This is invaluable in businesses with geo-dispersed locations and also with people on the move a lot. Accessing CRM and ERP systems on the go with tablets and mobile devices is really coming into its own, so if it’s something which could be useful to your company, you should certainly look into it. Good luck finding a system which works for your business.

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