Outgrown accounting software: Why you need to upgrade

outgrown accounting software

My company has outgrown its accounting software, now what?

One of the challenges we find our customers face is that their business is expanding, but their systems can’t keep up. If you are a small to medium-sized business and have trouble executing standard accounting processes, it’s time to admit that you have outgrown your accounting software.

It’s time to address the accounting elephant in the room

When a business starts out we understand that there are certain financial restrictions that prohibit you from scaling to more advanced systems. We find most small businesses either start with manual processes or use Sage and Quickbooks. Fast forward 5 years, your business has employed more staff, revenue has increased and you are looking at opening another location of your store. Just like using that trusty old second-hand car that cannot run forever, neither can your business on outdated software.

Companies that do not consider their long-term growth and change will eventually find their chart of accounts is no longer suitable for tracking financial transactions according to the current state of their business. Often accounts payable stunts business growth, which can hold you back from reaching your full potential. A number of challenges that creep into your business should start raising alarm bells for you. The next step is to recognize that your current methods just aren’t working anymore. Now it’s time to implement the right tools to optimize your business for success. Let’s look at some of the pain points associated with these challenges.

Accounting process pain points

  • Your payroll is growing: Basic accounting software allows you to support a certain number of employees. Once this limit is exceeded you are more than likely going to start pulling your hair out manually processing payroll activity.
  • You need more detailed reports: Standard reporting templates may have done the job in the past, but now your business is requiring more advanced and detailed reporting to help make better-informed decisions. Your current system probably won’t let you integrate more cutting-edge templates which means you are starting to miss out on a number of opportunities.
  • Customization limitations: You may be able to make minor adjustments in your system, but you will reach a point where the functionality you need is not included in your software. Purchasing additional resources to help you is not the answer.
  •  You’re expanding: Multiple locations or expanding abroad is a great achievement, but if your system cannot handle multiple currency options or integrate end of day transactions from multiple stores into one platform, you’re in for a bumpy ride.

The above points are just some of the challenges many small to medium-sized businesses face. If you can relate, then you know how much time and energy is wasted trying to get the information you need.  Why carry on putting yourself through these debilitating processes? Imagine you can solve all the above and more with one solution?

Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central to the rescue

Goodbye, old accounting software, hello (ERP) enterprise resource planning system. “Dynamics 365 Business Central is a flexible, scalable, comprehensive business management solution designed for small to medium-sized businesses.” That description just sounds heavenly. This ERP solution caters for all your business needs, allowing you to integrate all your business processes into one unified platform. This solution really is the next step for your business and is catered to smaller organizations, making it affordable. Another benefit to this system is that it allows customizations and integrations with other tools to make sure your system meets your specific industry business needs. Automation and business intelligence capabilities are just the cherries on top.

If you are looking to learn more about how Dynamics 365 Business Central can help you implement new processes let us know and one of our experienced consultants will help. Contact us on +27 (21) 205 3650 or email us on info@allonline365.com.

Written by: Romy Künneke, Marketing Coordinator, allonline365

Resources: Dynamics 365, Accounting Department, Accounting Today

What Kind of Distributor Are You?

Blog Written By | ERPFocus

Distribution ERP – What Kind of Distributor Are You?

Evaluating advice and information relating to ERP and distribution requires first that you understand exactly what portion of the distribution spectrum you are interested in, and then, what portion of the information – vendor claims, ERP implementation consulting experience. etc. – your evaluation is referring to.

Distribution can refer to channel – retail or web or wholesalers, for example. It can be shorthand for the primary function of administering transportation routes and freight management. If the distribution is used in the context of manufacturing, then it may be limited to getting finished inventory off the loading dock and on to a truck. In all of these cases, the functionality requirements of distribution ERP software are significantly different, and the vendor selection process can and should be different.

Channel Distribution

Managing channel distribution is largely a matter of marketing strategy. How you choose to sell your products, and to whom, must be a well thought out approach, or you can end up alienating your customers. For instance, if your primary channel strategy is to get your product to market via regional distributors, then later decide to also offer your product directly to consumers via a website, that could put you in direct competition with your distributors. The types of ERP solutions that help manage this sort of distribution have more elements in common with customer relationship management (CRM) than traditional supply chain management.

Logistics Based Distribution

Companies which make their money primarily from the transportation of goods from one point to another are dead center in the distribution spectrum. These companies deal with a very unique set of business problems and need a very unique set of ERP utilities as a result. Distribution companies are extremely sensitive to fuel costs and fuel consumption, and the effect changes in either can have an effect on costs and productivity. Transportation companies operate in a highly regulated arena, in which the hours drivers can work is rigidly specific, and can sometimes complicate the planning for long hauls. Truck and trailer (asset) management requires its own unique math formulas and logic. And all of this occurs in an environment that is chronically short of qualified drivers. Distribution ERP software for this segment needs to integrate smoothly with these business problems.

Manufacturing Distribution

Manufacturing operations often have a distribution function that is almost entirely a warehouse function, whether the warehouse exists as a part of the factory, or as a separate distribution center facility. Warehousing issues typically involve picking strategies, inventory movement, financial control, cycle counting, bin location, safety management, and document creation for bills of lading, shipping labels, and packing lists. Again, the ERP packages that handle these things effectively probably aren’t effective at handling the previous two categories of distribution.

The conclusion is to be well versed in what distribution requirements you have as you do your research for the right ERP vendor. No distribution ERP system on the market is all things to all organizations, and finding out the right fit for you will take self-knowledge and patience.

www.allonline365.com

You need an ERP system for process manufacturing

processing manufacturing

Blog Written By | ERPFocus

ERP in Process Manufacturing: Business Benefits

You may call it an accidental benefit, but one thing that an ERP implementation forces on an organization is a thorough examination of its business models and practices, and process manufacturing benefits disproportionately from this examination. By its very nature, process manufacturing tends to be more flexible and dynamic over time. As a result, many business practices are the result of evolution, instead of a thoughtful and well-executed strategy. In a process manufacturing, you can almost always accommodate one more special customer need, until, after a while, your business model hardly resembles what your manufacturing, service, or systems were designed for. The misalignment between how the business was designed to run and how it actually does run will be highlighted in a number of ERP design issues.

Turning Over the Rock

A typical example might be defining a business model as either make-to-order (a specific manufacturing plan for each customer order) or make-to-stock (sell orders from inventory). ERP generally rewards a clear-cut choice between these two with rich functionality, but process manufacturers often have difficulty committing to only one strategy. They want to describe a hybrid strategy and decide, order by order which strategy applies. While this sounds very customer-focused, it is an administrative nightmare. As you begin asking who has the authority to decide, and what the decision criteria are, you grasp that there is no overarching logic to the choices being made, and therefore it is not a business model that is easily programmable within an ERP environment. The conversation which emerges as a result of this ERP question is a vitally important one to the leaders of the business. If the leadership team is collaborative and synergistic, it is possible that ERP will serve as the framework for re-establishing a set of logical business rules. If the leadership team is dysfunctional and does not work together well, at least everyone explicitly understands that the business model does behave according to any predictable rules. This is not an observation in sarcasm; it is an important reference point for helping people understand why things do not go as expected.

Other examples might include how planning and manufacturing scheduling occurs, how a product that does not strictly meet quality specifications is handled, or how much lot traceability is truly required. The benefit in all of these, just like the one in the preceding paragraph, is to hold up the evolutionary decisions that a single functional area has turned into business policy, and examine them in the clear light of the total business process. The results can vary from exhilarating to frightening, depending on your organization.

If your workgroup can agree to operate your process manufacturing business logically, ERP will be a stair-step improvement. allonline365 can help guide you during your implementation of Dynamics 365 Business Central ERP, offering advice on the best modules and customizations need for your business. Call us on +27 (21) 205 3650 or email us on  info@allonline365.com. 

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