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"9 warning signs that your business needs to invest in ERP"

6 Minute Read

Is it time to invest in ERP?

The Sales team at Acuity speak to business owners and CFOs on a daily basis, and one of the most common questions they hear is, “how do I know if my business needs ERP?”.

It’s a great question, and one that not all vendors will give you an honest answer to. Many financial management and ERP solution vendors will tell you what they think you need to hear in order to invest.

We’re not like that.

For everyone at Acuity, the main priority is providing the best service and advice to our customers (and anyone else we speak to).

If we speak to a company who wants to invest in a top-of-the-range solution, but what they actually need is a mid-level solution, we tell them! Similarly, if there are issues in your business that we know are holding you back, we’ll let you know, and help you find a solution to fix it.

All businesses are different, and therefore have different problems that need addressing.

So, in this blog post we’ll talk you through some of the most common warning signs that your business needs to invest in ERP.

What is ERP?

ERP stands for Enterprise Resource Planning. Learn more about the systems and whether you should invest in ERP here...

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ERP System

Warning Sign #1: Incoherent software

The Problem: If you’re using multiple systems to handle different processes and operations, you’re likely to be experiencing efficiency issues, even if you’re not aware of it. Storing data in multiple places makes simple tasks much trickier than it needs to be, increasing risk of errors, slower processes and wasted time.

The Solution: ERP systems are designed to bring all your processes and systems together, so your data and information is available for your whole team to access in one place. As a result, you can control all business functions in one system, eliminating data re-entry, enabling greater communication and visibility, and improving overall efficiency.

Computer software

Warning Sign #2: Workarounds for software failures

The Problem: Your business is growing, its needs are changing, and your software just doesn’t have the functionality you require. Rather than address the problem, you’ve done your best to work around it, using spreadsheets to fill in the gaps. 

The Solution: The right ERP solution for your business is out there! And it will provide the agility, flexibility and scalability needed to accommodate future growth and development of your business and its needs.

Warning Sign #3: Lack of real-time access

The Problem: You’re using multiple systems and don’t have any cloud-based solutions, making access to real-time information impossible. Data re-entry and manual consolidation to run reports and make decisions is time-consuming and by the time you have what you need, it’s no longer relevant.

The Solution: A cloud-based ERP system allows your team to access the information they need anytime, anywhere.

 

Warning Sign #4: Your system can’t keep up

The Problem: As your business grows, your server-hosted system is put under increasing pressure. As a result, your system no longer has the capacity required to keep up, resulting in crashes and much slower response times.

The Solution: Implementing an up-to-date, flexible ERP system will provide you with a future-proof solution that can grow with your business.

Remote working

Warning Sign #5: On-premises restrictions

The Problem: With a rise in popularity of home-based and remote working, many businesses are looking to move to the cloud and say adios to their on-premises solution. Legacy solutions don’t provide any flexibility for remote working and cannot be upgraded or adapted to do so, limiting your team to office working.

The Solution: Cloud-based ERP systems allow you’re a large proportion of your team to work anywhere, providing them with the flexibility to split their time between the office and home-based or remote working. For those who work in the field, this allows them to add information to the system there and then, saving time and ensuring accurate and thorough data capture.

Warning Sign #6: Software end-of-life is looming

The Problem: If your software is coming to its end-of-life, it will ultimately become incompatible with any advancements in hardware in the coming years. There are also several other complications associated with a software solution coming to this stage, which will likely cause problems for your business in the long run.

The Solution: Upgrading to an up-to-date ERP system will ensure it is future-proof and flexible enough to cope with any changes in your business (or hardware) down the line.

Are you a Sage 300 customer?

If you’re unsure of what your next steps should be to prepare for your software’s end-of-life, read our blog post for guidance or get in touch.

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Adding up business costs

Warning Sign #7: Increasing on-going costs

The Problem: As your system gets older, you may well find that your supplier or software partner increases the cost of supporting the older technology. In many cases, this is a tactic to persuade you to upgrade to a newer solution but could also mean that your system isn’t supported at all.

The Solution: We recommend shopping around and discussing your options with a number of software partners to ensure you invest in ERP the right way; find the best solution for you, the best service and the best value for money.

Analyse business performance

Warning Sign #8: No room for growth

The Problem: Like any business, yours has dreams for growth. Whether that consists of franchising, or becoming a multi-entity or international company, or something entirely different, you’re unlikely to get there if your software doesn’t support those ambitions. As your business grows, you’ll see an increase in clients, suppliers, invoices, orders, staff employed, and so on. Your business needs to manage this growth with ease, but if your software isn’t up to the task, you could end up in a pickle!

The Solution: With the right ERP system, your business will be able to grow with ease, and the software will adapt with it.

Warning Sign #9: Your system doesn’t accommodate industry requirements

The Problem: ERP solutions are required by all manner of businesses across several industries, and businesses in each industry have their own requirements for operational success. Legacy ERP solutions often come with the bare-bones of functionality required, which could leave your business barely getting by.

The Solution: All modern ERP systems have a minimum standard of functionality required for various industries, and most have the capacity to implement add-on or plug-in solutions for additional functionality that is required but isn’t a standard feature.

We hope you find these 9 common warning signs and solutions useful.

If your business is facing a problem we haven’t covered above, or you’re wondering whether your business should invest in ERP, get in touch via the form below!