4 Reasons to upgrade your Basic Accounting software to an ERP Solution

4 Reason to upgrade to an erp solution cover image

Well, here at Triumph, we could give you 36 reasons why you should upgrade your accounting software to an ERP solution. But for today let’s stick to 4 Major ones that can have a tremendous impact on your business within the next decade.

Imagine you have an incredible car you put your time, effort, and sweat into building, but it runs on an older engine that guzzles fuel and after a while, it starts to concern you, the solution is an up-gradable engine that powers your creation efficiently making it in the long term, a cost-effective investment.

ERP Solution and very clean car engine

It is the same with your business. Spending years of hard work and trying to pursue ideas that made you start your business in the first place should always be your primary focus. We know it can be a messy challenge dealing with various arduous business processes, this can be especially the case with basic accounting software where basic transactions and data is captured. If you are a small business this would be perfect as it meets your basic requirements.

ERP Solution can help with inventory and delivery

But if you are experiencing growth and wish to expand your business in the coming decade, basic accounting software will not only make your life a confusing mess, but it will also cost you heavily in the long run. The time spent on managing information within a system that isn’t automated like an ERP solution can be spent furthering your vision and company instead.


Ok then, what sort of signs should I be looking for to upgrade to an ERP solution?

There are some clear benefits for you to upgrade to a platform that grows with you, but here are some very clear signs that should alert you to upgrade from basic accounting software to a fully-fledged advanced solution, which ironically is much more user-friendly.  

Sign #1 Multiple trading entities

ERP Solution can help with companies having multiple businesses

If your business is experiencing and you are looking to expand not just locally, you are looking at a state-wide maybe even a global expansion for your business. This would mean you will have to look at creating multiple businesses that are operated across different regions, and for an SME like yours, this can be especially challenging.

On the left, you have the time-consuming and cumbersome process of integrating 3rd party applications with your existing accounting software, and on the other hand, you are running lap after lap meeting different accounting standards, and tax regulations and managing differing exchange rates across your businesses as you expand on a global scale.

This is where an ERP solution like triumph comes in, the solution is not just implemented to aggregate all this data into something comprehensible and easy to follow, an ERP solution automates currency conversion, regulations, and reporting for different subsidiaries across various regions or countries, all this in real-time. Helping you make quick and informed key decisions during key moments for your business.


Sign #2 Incomprehensible Data 

How is it that Google and Facebook can target you with relevant ads so well? That you often make purchasing decisions based on them.

Facebook icon in macro shot

This is only possible because as you used these platforms more, the amount of data given to these platforms by you has grown as well, helping identify and helping you become aware of products and services you would use or have an interest in.

It is the same with your business data, it grows as you grow. 
ERP solution, coding

What you do with data will forever change the way you operate and run your business, it is a gold mine of information on how your business works internally and externally, in today’s market, data is currency as it directly correlates with increasing business performance and improving customer satisfaction.

However, with basic accounting software, important key data can be spread sparsely across various areas, especially with a business that is expanding like yours. This means keeping track of this data over your various subsidiaries or even departments through 3rd party applications and confusing spreadsheets that are incomprehensible as the data hasn’t been processed in real time for insightful reporting that can help you make informed decisions.

An ERP solution like Triumph provides you with a one-stop shop for your business data, and it isn’t built into a spreadsheet but designed to give you access to your data in a visual manner that is easy to understand and even easier to act on, in real time.

What’s great about an ERP solution like Triumph is that having real-time data accessible simply through a dashboard, gives you greater transparency surrounding not just how your business truly operates but also how customers interact with your business. This helps you essentially spot critical deficiencies across your business and gives you the ability to not just identify them but make actionable changes that will help you further become a major competitor in a busy market.


Sign #3 Micromanaging Inventory in Multiple Locations

Ship with containers, Track with an ERP solution

It is quite common for businesses to adopt an omnichannel strategy when looking at expansion, especially in a post-internet world where orders can come from various locations, making the supply chain for your products a complex system. This is why businesses usually implement a multi-location system to carry stock, this not only cuts down on delivery time increasing customer satisfaction but also saves money on shipping and handling across various locations to reach one destination.

Relying on basic accounting software which can only handle total stock across various locations, will not only be a huge task of guesstimating but also incredibly unreliable if you want to make key decisions in real-time based on available stock. This can often lead to ensuring extra stock is kept if there is stock-out at any one location, costing you more and in the long term affecting the value of your stock as it depreciates.

Accounting Software

If you are looking to expand your business in order to fulfill your vision without any costly hiccups across your supply chain, then it is best to start thinking about implementing an ERP solution like Triumph, Triumph ERP is a heavily modular system that grows with you, but importantly Triumph includes the Multi-Location stock module, helping you allocate each location/store to have its very own price, quantity, and items which can by synchronised across all of your locations.

Having the ability to accurately forecast and plan for stock can be a challenging prospect without an ERP solution, this can lead to poor customer satisfaction and retention in the long term as well. Moreover, the Multi-Location stock module is so advanced it also gives you automated sales, inventory, profit, and loss reports from each location. To learn more, click here.


Sign #4 Waning Supply Chain Management

Birds eye view of shipping dock

If your software doesn’t give you a complete picture of your supply chain, including taking into account, accounting regulations, tariffs, and regulatory requirements on a global scale, this can impact product delivery and potentially cause financial and reputational damage.

If you are looking at expansion you will come across such a challenge, instead of relying on spreadsheets to keep track of your supply chain or installing additional plugins to keep up, general accounting software will not cut it.

Basic accounting software usese Excel sheets, which are very time consuming compared to an ERP solution

Not only does it put you at a greater competitive disadvantage, but general accounting software also cannot act as a central hub for all business data, this would include tracking orders through 3PL partners. Moreover, while you have the convenience of a 3PL partner fulfilling orders, accounting software will not be able to report on inventory, orders, vendors, and customers through a unified perspective, this is where an ERP solution shines.

ERP solutions like Triumph have the transformative ability of unifying your supply chain under one system, a central hub for key stakeholders within your business to easily access through an easy to read but detailed dashboard. Furthermore, unlocking the full extent of your supply chain with Triumph not only helps give you real-time information on the supply chain, but you can build backup plans, and quickly adapt to a constantly evolving market.

To find out more, try Triumph for free or better yet get in touch with us!

What is Big Data?

big data

The key to understanding big data technologies is unlocking its past, its present and its future.

Information is data, and data only started to make an impact within our global economy with the earliest introduction of a data centre for financial institutions in 1955, for the Bank of America. With the introduction of the ERMA Mark 2, banks were able to handle their accounting and cheque systems around the clock. In a way this could be considered one of the first instances of automation within the banking world during the 1900’s, mere kilobytes of data used to manage whole accounting systems compared to petabytes (1000 TB) of data we have access today.

big data

Ok now let’s switch back to the present

With the global advent of IoT (Internet of Things), there has been ever rising surge of devices connected to the internet, gathering and collating huge amount of user data not just for the benefit of advertising companies but also for a variety of industries such as manufacturing and software development to better understand customers but also an efficient manner to build better products and services. This is driven by collating and dissecting big data, transforming it into dashboards through ERP systems that give usage patterns and performance data on your current product line.

Big Data

The future for Big Data is here, and it is through Machine learning

Analyzing big data through Machine Learning has not only produced more data but has learned as the name suggests, to use this data in an incredibly efficient manner. Machine Learning, is a manner of data analytics that learns computer algorithms that improve based on experiential data and by identifying patterns, machine learning can effectively make decisions without human intervention.

Here’s an easy-to-understand example of how machine learning works in your day-to-day devices, like your smartphone such as a virtual assistant software. Be it Google Voice or Siri, the major key to these assistants is voice recognition, however most individuals have varying degrees of tone, language and also manner of speech. By using big data and specifically your user data as a point of input, your chosen virtual assistant is able to better understand over time, becoming increasingly accurate over time with the gradual eventuality of becoming more efficient and effective than real assistants who can not work at the speed and effectiveness of a service such as Google voice or Siri.

Big Data

How do you identify or describe big data?

You can further characterise big data through the following four characteristics

(i) Volume: Well volume is key, as big data is as the name suggest enormous, the size is crucial to identifying the value within the data. For example: The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) generates 1TB (Terabyte) of trade data each day, if you collate these over months or weeks, this can generate a lot of information through which analysts can determine market behaviour.

(ii) Variety: when handling any amount of enormous information you can expect a variety through analysis, as such Big Data has different types of data you can further dichotomise. These can be such as:

1. Structured: Data that is processed, stored and accessed is through a stringent fixed format giving it a form of structure. Ok, if it’s a bit harder to understand here is a very simple example of structured data

big data

2. Unstructured: This is data that is in its raw form hence being unstructured, it’s even bigger but isn’t actively managed. A simple example of this would be through social media, while it is semi-structured through the use of hashtags if you were to search for interests, however anything related to the hashtags depending on the platform is most times unrelated, but companies are overcoming this by using many strategies such as combining mentions, hashtags and also tags within their network.

(iii) Velocity: This is the speed at which data is created hence ‘velocity’. However, the value of this data depends how the data generation is processed. This can be through the flow of data through financial processes, but an easier example would be again through social media. For example, twitter generates 500 million tweets a day, an incredible amount of data within the span of just 24 hours, this stat could be constantly changing as its users grow at a rate of 8.4% annually.

(iv) Variability: As with any enormous amount of information there is bound to be faults/inconsistencies within the information provided. This same principle is applied to identifying big data, being a variable in itself, there are multiple types of data and sources as well and due to data having constant changes with new information.  As a result companies have started to use of advanced software not only to sort through the information but also to contextualize them.

Big Data

Big Value through Big Data

Data is intrinsically valuable for all businesses. Today, data is capital as the more data a business acquires, the more value it can output not just to effectively manage business processes, but also to analyse customers to better develop existing or new products.

What is big data used for?

So, the key to unlocking the incredible benefits Big Data is the ability to process it, which is done through a Data Base Management System or DBMS as the tech wizards call it. Another way to look at it is to see Big Data as the cow and the DBMS as the butcher who processes the ‘data’.

This gives your business the ability to improve customer service through analysing data from social media services that give you analytics and the ability to strategize to target and achieve higher retention with customers.

It doesn’t stop here you can further use this to analyse consumer behaviour through consumer responses and identify any defects in products (this can be through BETA testing software) and also better operational efficiency in terms of employee management.

Some of the biggest companies today are based on the value they offer through data storage but also processing big data. We can simply look at tech companies such as Google, with the majority of their value driven through data processing, analytics and storage.

Big Data

Reaching scalability through the Cloud

With massive improvements in cloud technology, not only in terms of architecture, with the application of Moore’s law the cost of storage and computation of data has become increasingly more commercially viable, be it outsourcing data storage centres through providers such as Amazon AWS, Azure or even Google, these services often cost less and offer more security than an inbuilt on premise data center, as a business owner you do not have to worry about maintenance costs and more importantly data security.

The possibilities today with the improvement of cloud computing architecture is seemingly endless. Big data has the ability to scale and also be accessible from a variety of devices. As a business if you have invested in cloud computing such as a cloud-based ERP solution for your business, you and your employees can access your customer and company data for your product/service line anywhere, this is especially beneficial with hybrid work environments that are present in the workplace today.

Big Data

So

Just to refresh your memory, Big data is essentially data that can be identified by its incredible volume, velocity (in terms of information) and like any huge amount of information, its variety. These data sets are so huge they are classified as big data, however using regular processing software is not feasible.

The use of an ERP system to drive solutions through business intelligence in an effort to solve problems is a much more succinct approach towards driving value through big data. This is further explained in the next leg of this big data series, to be released soon.

How to email contacts with a single click?

tips and tricks 1

Maintaining contacts is Triumph ERP provides a quick and easy way to communicate with customers and suppliers alike.  With a click your email client is automatically launched with the email address inserted and ready for you to type.


Contacts can be mailed via any of the following options:

  • Bank Account Maintenance (G-B-F-A)
  • Debtor Account Maintenance (D-F-A)
  • Creditor Account Maintenance (C-F-A)
  • Insurance Maintenance (F-F-I)
  • Finance Maintenance (F-F-F)
  • Job Maintenance (J-F-J)
  • Global Delivery Address Maintenance (C-P-F-D)

And via the Contacts button on the application’s toolbar.

  • Contact Maintenance (S-F-F-O)
email
email

How do I add supporting documents when entering a transaction?

How do I add supporting Documents when Entering a Transaction?

All the major transaction options in Triumph ERP such as creditor invoices, purchase orders and sales orders etc, allow you to add documents. These can be supporting documents such as safety instructions, or a PDF copy of a technical drawing, or, when entering a supplier’s invoice, the original source document. You can even copy and attach a whole email.

Any transaction option that accepts documents has a separate tab page. Select, or navigate to, the tab page, then locate a document and copy and paste or drag-n-drop it onto the page

Debtor Invoice Entry

In the image below we have added a couple of documents.

Debtor Invoice Entry

After items have been added they can be view (open), removed (delete) or copied and pasted.  When the transaction is saved and the docket is to be emailed, checking the email next the document ensures it is added as an attachment.


Email Tax Invoice

Documents stored on a transaction can be viewed via the appropriate transaction enquiry option.  An icon visually identifies if one or more document is associated with the transaction.  These can be edit and additional documents added.

Debtor Transactions Enquiry

Save the environment and do away with printed copies of documents. Store them electronically.

Why are businesses using ERP Software?

Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP)for businesses

Why are businesses using ERP Software?

Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP)for businesses

Enterprise Resource Planning, otherwise known as ERP, refers to an all-in-one software system which manages your day-to-day business operations, finances and accounting. The system enables proper management of your businesses daily operations, streamline procedures and coordinating activities, which helps you focus on the big-picture.

Growing and evolving your business successfully is all about planning, preparation and efficient management, and without an efficient integrated ERP system delivered by a knowledgeable partner, it can be difficult to manage large and distributed businesses.

How an ERP software can help your business

Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software assists in maintaining productivity and transparency within your business on a day-to-day basis. Depending on how the system is implemented and what your business focuses on, an ERP system can control the accounting, manufacturing, project management, supply chain, procurement and many of the daily processes of your business.

ERP systems can define and automate your business processes to enable a smooth and accurate flow of data across different departments. Utilising data across different parts of your business, ERP software eliminates duplication and provides data with integrity for smooth and accurate forecasting, finance and accounting.

Well-implemented ERP systems like Triumph ERP integrate into your business on all levels to ensure that all information is accurate, easily accessible and working in harmony to support business objectives. Triumph ERP software will help you see the big picture with accurate data shared company-wide.

Check out our blog What is ERP? for more information about ERP systems.

The benefits of ERP software implementation

Relied upon by businesses big and small, ERP software is the backbone of daily operations and activities. ERP’s can offer an array of benefits to your business, such as:

  • Streamlined Processes: as your company grows and processes get more complex, implementing an ERP system can provide operational efficiencies through automation of tasks.
  • Cost reductions: operations across your business will gain a higher efficiency, reducing delays and improving the processes of all the departments, from accounting to customer relations.
  • Business insights: ERP provides real-time information in clear and concise reports generated from accurate business data.
  • Data integrity: ERP offers improved data integrity and financial control for greater confidence in reporting and accounting.

Why ERP is important for companies of all sizes

ERP is considered a valuable investment by businesses of all sizes. Essential to daily operations, productivity and record keeping of countless organisations, ERP software will enhance the efficiency and accuracy within your business procedures to save you a considerable number of mistakes, oversights and delays.

If you have a smaller growing business, you may feel that ERP seems like an unnecessary addition. While you may find yourself already taking care of all activities, records and data across multiple separate systems, many business owners find that they struggle to keep track of everything as their business grows. From adding employees to expanding product offerings and sites, ERP software will help you integrate all of your processes, systems, data and activities into one system that works to support your success. ERP provides smaller growing businesses with a way to ensure all employees have fast access to the resources they need to grow your business, enhance productivity and complete reporting with confidence and accuracy.

For most large companies, ERP becomes the backbone of their business and is integral to their core strategies. With the ability to be customised to suit the requirements of each individual business, ERP supports businesses of all sizes with precision and reliability.

How to implement an ERP system into your business

The first step in implementing a successful ERP system is to define what you are trying to achieve within your business, and the objective criteria by which to measure success. This needs to be based on the business case put forward when making a decision to implement an ERP system into your business, regardless of your company’s size.

Next you need to engage with an accredited partner that you feel you can trust, and who takes the time to understand your business. They need to be clear on the challenges, processes and integrations that are important to the organisation, such as the Triumph ERP accredited partners, who are required to meet strict criteria for experience, integrity and commitment to delivering effective business solutions.

Within your own team, you will also be required to nominate the internal project team and give them the authority and the time to dedicate towards the project. Your accredited partner and the internal team need to be clear on the objectives of the project through the entire implementation process.

Following a thorough consultation on the needs of your business, the accredited partner will design and plan an ERP solution tailored to your business with project objectives, budget, timelines and details about how to control the project scope. They take into account your current circumstances alongside your business growth projections and objectives to ensure that your ERP system can continue to meet your needs as you grow and evolve.

As with any new system or software, an implementation must be efficient, effective and comprehensively planned. Accredited partners will provide you and your team with the insight, training and know-how to effectively utilise your ERP in daily operations. The goal should be that your business is able to take ownership of your own system after going live.

Triumph ERP software and their partners

Triumph ERP software is sold and supported exclusively by fully trained and accredited partners. Our Accredited Partners are the key to our outstanding and responsive service. We only appoint organisations that meet strict criteria for experience, integrity and commitment to delivering effective business solutions.

All of our Accredited Partners have a thorough knowledge of Triumph ERP, as well as accounting qualifications and skills. They are best placed to help you because they understand your business, how your software is installed and set up, and the network/hardware environment it’s running on. If they’re unable to resolve any issues you may have, then they will enlist our help as the Australian developer of Triumph ERP software, making sure that your business is always operational.

Triumph ERP is built upon a modular design, allowing the software to be customised and scaled to suit needs and support business growth. This unparalleled ability to add on modules and users makes Triumph ERP the most capable and affordable entry level ERP software on the market today.

Cybercrime during COVID-19

cybersecurity series part one

Cybercrime during COVID-19

The year 2020 has brought unprecedented disruption, change and the need for adaptation to businesses and organisations across the world. While business leaders have faced and confronted a slew of challenges that were unprecedented prior to COVID-19, cybersecurity issues continue to not only remain a concern, but become a more challenging force, causing organisations to re-examine their cybersecurity and remote work capabilities as they continue to move forward.

Cybercrime,cyber,security,staff,business

Cybercrime such as phishing attacks have increased by 300 per cent since the start of 2020 compared to the same period last year, with new research revealing that the reason is due to more people working from home.

This increase was seen as a result of confidential information being sent and received from personal devices rather than secure office networks, sensitive data became potentially exposed to a new wave of targeted attacks and scams.

Even though many employees have returned to the office, as businesses move forward through the virus and beyond, the consideration of continuing remote working for employees remains a favourable option for businesses wishing to modernise their processes. Although this will host a myriad of positive benefits including an improved work/life balance, improved mental health, and improved productivity, there is also cause for concern if your business and employees do not reflect best cyber security practices.

Phishing emails and other communication methods have improved over the years, with many scammers pretending to be from real and well-known businesses such as banks, travel agents, insurance providers, phone companies, and even from your business manager, using excuses around COVID-19 or similar concerns to either ask for your personal and financial information, lure you into opening malicious links or attachments, gain remote access to your computer, seek payment for a fake service, or ask you to pay for something you hadn’t purchased.

Businesses and employees need to be aware of not only how cybercrime can jeopardise business and personal data, but need to be aware of how to prevent being a victim of an attack.

What can businesses do to protect from cybercrime during COVID-19?

1. Take care of your technical hygiene

Cybercrime,cyber,security,staff,business

This is something you should be doing already, but if you’re not up-to-date, now is a good time for you and all staff to tick some basic items off, including:

  • ensuring strong passwords are in place, not only for your computers but also for staff’s home Wi-Fi.
  • ensure that you have reliable VPN technology (more on this below) installed to secure your remote connections.
  • check that the software that you currently use is patched with the latest versions of fixes.

2. Be vigilant

Cybercrime,cyber,security,staff,business

Educate your staff that the incidence of cyber-attacks is rising, and the number of phishing emails and scams that are being circulated is increasing daily. If everyone within your business is vigilant, then they will more likely be cautious and check that emails or texts that they receive are coming from reputable sources before acting. Ask them to be particularly aware of poor grammar, design quality and a false sense of urgency in any communication they receive.

3. Turn on multi-factor authentication (MFA)

Cybercrime,cyber,security,staff,business

Multi-factor authentication (MFA) software helps improve security across a company by requiring additional authentication measures for access to sensitive information, systems, or applications. Instead of a simple username and password input, users are prompted to provide SMS code, biometric verification (such as facial recognition), or email confirmation actions to properly verify their identity. Businesses should use these tools to add a secondary confirmation that individuals accessing privileged information are who they say they are.

4. Back up your data regularly

Cybercrime,cyber,security,staff,business

Backups should be done and tested on a regular basis. A copy of your backup data should be stored off site as well in case the building burns down etc.

Additionally, if your backup solution is connected to your network it will also fall victim to a ransomware attack, therefore backups should be kept offline on hard drives or other external devices.

BONUS: Confirm your ability to manage logs remotely (if you have IT staff)

Ensure that your IT staff are able to monitor your security remotely so they can maintain visibility across the network when working from home. This will allow you to proactively monitor your cyber environment and respond quickly if a potential attack is in progress rather than waiting until after an incident to understand what has happened.

What can employees do to protect their devices and data while remote working?

 

1. Avoid public Wi-Fi; if necessary, use personal hotspots or some way to encrypt your web connection.

Cybercrime,cyber,security,staff,business

Public Wi-Fi introduces significant security risk and should be avoided if possible. If you need to access the internet from a public Wi-Fi location, a good option is to use a personal hotspot from a dedicated device or your phone. Although some of your web traffic could be unencrypted between the hotspot and its destination, using a hot spot does eliminate the problem of getting hacked by people on the same public Wi-Fi with man-in-the-middle attacks.

If implemented by your company, a VPN for remote access will provide a flexible connection to connect to the office from home. A VPN gives you online privacy and anonymity by creating a private network from a public internet connection. VPNs mask your internet protocol (IP) address so your online actions are virtually untraceable. Most important, VPN services establish secure and encrypted connections to provide greater privacy than even a secured Wi-Fi hotspot.

2. Keep work data on work computers

Cybercrime,cyber,security,staff,business


Thinking about taking care of a few emails at home before bed? If you take precautions like using your work computer, secure Wi-Fi, a VPN, encrypted drives, and endpoint protection, this may be totally fine. With that said, it can be tempting to use your personal computer if your work computer is in a different room or you forgot your charger at the office. This is a risk for you and the company!

If you work at an organization with an efficient IT team, they may be installing regular updates, running antivirus scans, blocking malicious sites, etc., and these activities may be transparent to you. There is a good chance you have not followed the same protocols with your personal computer as are mandatory at work.

If your employer gives you access to a portal or remote access environment such as Office 365, you can work online and avoid downloading or syncing files or emails to a personal device. It’s always a best practice to keep personal business on personal technology, and only use your work-issued laptop for work-related business.

3. Block the sight lines

Cybercrime,cyber,security,staff,business

If you are at a coffee shop, pay attention to your sightlines. If someone is behind you, they can see everything you are typing- this is known as shoulder surfing. Furthermore, someone with the right observational skills (like a cybercriminal) could easily watch what you are doing and identify confidential information. Additionally, keep your devices with you; in the time it takes you to use a restroom, your device could be quickly compromised by a cybercriminal with a USB stick that types pre-programmed sequences at 1000 words per minute.

4. Encrypt Sensitive Data in Emails and on Your Device

Cybercrime,cyber,security,staff,business

Sending emails with sensitive data is always going to be a risk. It could be intercepted or seen by a third party. If you encrypt the data attached to an email, it will prevent an unintended recipient from viewing the information. Also, be sure your device is set to have all stored data encrypted in the case of theft.

BONUS: Don’t use random thumb drives

A classic hacking technique is to drop a number of large capacity thumb drives near the company you are hoping to attack. The chances that an unwitting employee will pick up the thumb drive and use it are surprisingly high. All it will take is one staff member to open the files on the drive and then BINGO- the hacker is in.

Never use a thumb drive if you don’t know where it came from
and do not continue to use one if you have plugged it into a system for whose safety you cannot honestly vouch.

5 Signs your business is ready for an ERP system

5 signs your business is ready for an ERP system

It’s late at night, and you’re still stuck in the office, trying to reconcile the day-to-day work processes. You’re having a difficult time keeping up with the order volume and customer satisfaction has been dropping. Your sales forecast has been based on guesswork, rather than precise evidence, and it’s been a long time since you knew the correct quantity of stock which was in your warehouse.

Unfortunately, this scenario can occur when business experience a growth and the former processes are not able to keep up. If you find that your business is experiencing more than a few of these signs, maybe it’s time to invest in an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system. To help stay on top of your business and stay ahead of your competitors, it is important for business owners to seek out the right tools for their market, and investing in an ERP system is no different.

An integrated management system which focuses on the main business processes often in real time, an ERP system collects, stores, manages, and interprets data from all aspects of your business.

Investing in ERP software can help businesses improve their performance and assist with the automation of certain processes within the organisation, making them a worthwhile investment.

Although there is no such thing as a perfect set of rules to identify if your business is ready for an ERP implementation, identifying any issues you are experiencing could be evidence it is time to invest in an ERP system.

1.    You currently have a lot of different software managing different processes

How do your employees record, track, and process information within your company? Do your accounting staff use a system for payables and receivables, and the sales team use another to enter customer orders? Have you found the process of taking the orders and getting them fulfilled and through to accounting a tedious manual process? What about your warehouse team, are they also using a completely different solution to track shipping and receiving?

The problem is, when various front and back end systems are running separately, it can cause major problems on the processes that are meant to ensure your company is running smoothly. Problems can start to occur, such as inaccurate data from sales which can affect inventory management, or not having the latest information from accounting can cause a ripple effect on other aspects of your business, from General Ledger to Job Quoting.

It is with ERP software that these systems are integrated, so that every aspect of a business functionality operates within a single database. This one source of information contains accurate, real-time data, allowing for ERP to break up information confusion, help staff make better decisions quickly, freeing up their time to work on more high-value projects which can help your business grow even faster.

2.    You don’t have easy access to the data and information related to your business

If someone asked you what your average sales margin is, how long would it take you to find out? What about other key performance metrics, like orders per day or sales to date? Companies relying on separate systems and spreadsheets will find that they constantly require updating and need to be reconciled manually.

When your business experiences growth, you will instantly notice the speed of operating becomes faster than it ever was before, which means your employees need immediate access to key data at all times. Through the use of an ERP system, your staff can get the information they need to do their jobs more effectively, such as the business owners getting a holistic view of the business operations at any time, or your sales representatives being able to view a customer’s full transaction history to assist with improving renewal rates while increasing upsell and cross-sell opportunities.  An accurate, fast, and reliable data exchange between departments will assist with the reduction of time spent on duplicate processes and information consolidation, and with an ERP system producing accurate and real-time data, this enables a seamless flow of information across all required departments.

3.    You’re having difficulty and spending too much time with your accounting

One of the first noticeable signs that your company is in need of an ERP system will initially come from your accounting department. Many businesses rely on paper-based invoices and sales orders, causing many hours to be spent every week manually entering the information into different accounting and sales systems. How much time are you actually spending on such tedious tasks that an ERP system can complete in an instant?

The same can be said for financial reporting. If you are finding yourself spending hours consolidating or reconciling financial information across a number of systems and through countless spreadsheets, an ERP system could be what you need to make a significant impact and save you some valuable time. Implementing an ERP system means having all of your financials within a single database, meaning time will not have to be spent cross-posting information, re-keying numbers, or reconciling data manually. This will allow yourself and your accounting team to deliver critical reports without delays and frustration, and offer time for more important tasks.

4.    Your sales and customer experience are suffering

As your business grows, you may find that inventory management starts to become a challenge. Ensuring that the subsequent amount of stock is in the right place at the right time is a vital part of business operations, and inevitably, business success.

When sales, inventory, and customer data are maintained separately, it can produce severe problems across your business. What if you run out of a popular product? This can cause sales to drop until the next shipment arrives. What if a customer calls to inquire about an order, but the employees can’t seem to track the item to see if it is in stock? Customers regularly seek out businesses which can give them the right information quickly, and expect to get their hands on their purchases straight away, therefore, if your company can’t offer the right information upfront, your business can start to develop a poor reputation for reliability and service rather quickly if you can’t keep up with the demand.

Implementing an ERP system into your business will allow for your staff in every department to have access to the same information in real-time, allowing for customer-facing reps to be able to answer customer inquiries without having to hang up the phone or put them on hold to check with another department, meanwhile the warehouse manager can see that stock is getting low and can reorder the stock before it runs out.

5.    Your IT is too complex, time-consuming, and costly

One of the biggest downsides to having multiple systems across your business is that the IT management can not only be a nightmare to handle, but will burn a hole in your pocket in the long term. It can be difficult for businesses to customise these systems, integrating them and maintaining them with patches and upgrades can be complex, costly, and can sap critical time and resources. Rather than adding additional software- and complexity- to an already ineffective, and most likely outdated system, adopting an ERP system can give you the capability to respond to changing business and IT needs rapidly, especially though the use of a cloud-based ERP system.

Using a cloud-based ERP software can increase efficiency and flexibility within your business, allow you to respond to change more effectively, and can slash IT costs. Whether your goal is to optimise your operations, employ leading edge business tools, or maximise your operational efficiency, you can gain the flexibility to manage and grow your business using fewer internal resources and without the installation and hardware investments associated with traditional software packages.

If you are experiencing issues within your business which is causing headaches and frustration, then it may be time to consider implementing an ERP system for yourself. With Triumph ERP, you will be able to manage your information in an efficient and organised manner, gain complete visibility across your organisation and have the assistance to make quick, educated decisions essential to the success of your business. As your business grows, so does its complexity. Triumph ERP has been developed in modules to ensure that we can deliver you a solution that will fit perfectly with your needs today, but also have the ability to adapt to your needs tomorrow.

For more information about how Triumph ERP can help improve your business, click here.

7 Reasons Business Intelligence is Vital to Business Success

7 reasons why BI is vital to business success

With technology taking part in almost every aspect of businesses today, we are constantly living and working in the age of information- and this information is power! However, with the amount of information we receive each day, we can often find ourselves feeling overwhelmed and sometimes buried under a pile of numbers, and without the right tools, it can be difficult to make sense of everything.

Many small business owners and managers have been slow to adopt Business Intelligence (BI) within their workplace. This is mainly due to the lack of knowledge and understanding of what BI actually is, as it can be time-consuming to review all the information, which in turn can cause you to question if it holds any real benefit for your business.

The fact is, Business Intelligence should be an integral part of any operation.

Business Intelligence is essentially timely, accurate, high-value, and actionable business insights, along with the work processes and technologies used to obtain them. Business Intelligence is not only for enterprise companies, in fact, businesses of all sizes can benefit from the capabilities of BI.

There are many reasons for businesses to implement Business Intelligence into their day-to-day use, here are the top seven reasons to bring BI into your business.

1.   Visualize Important Information

Operational reports generated for your business can be difficult to understand, reducing your ability to recognise and act on key metrics. One of the key benefits of BI software is that it provides excellent data visualisation capabilities, allowing you to create clear data visuals through the use of charts and graphs, which can be easier to understand compared to blocks of numbers or spreadsheets.

2.   Boost Productivity

Through traditional data gathering methods, users need to compile and analyse data and write related reports. This can be incredibly time consuming, especially for small businesses that may not have the employees to do it. With the use of a Business Intelligence program, you gain the ability to pull data and create the reports at the click of a button, thus freeing up time and resources allowing employees to be more productive on their own tasks.

3.   Data Mining

Data mining is the process of seeking patterns in data in order to identify trends and draw insights, and BI analytic tools are exceptionally well-suited to do just that. Because BI software can instantaneously analyse incoming data, it can help your business catch fleeting opportunities that you might otherwise miss. With the ability to create customized reports through BI, your business can easily pick up of trends in a vast array of areas including spending, staffing, operations, customer purchasing, and more.

4.   Gain Insights into Consumer Behaviour

Business Intelligence provides reporting tools that will give you access to the data you need to analyse performance at the customer and product level, which can give your team a better understanding of what your customers are buying, and once you understand what your consumers are buying, you can use this information to develop products that match the current consumption trends and consequently improve your profitability. This in-depth business intelligence can lead to better business decisions and you will be able to control your financial data with user-friendly, intuitive tools to help you review your current business performance.

5.   Results Closer to Established Goals

Detailed product analysis reporting through the use of Business Intelligence can help identify sales and margins by both customer and product, to help you better understand product profitability. How many times have you established a set of seemingly reasonable goals for a project or other venture, only to end up with an outcome that is drastically different? With BI you can keep track of information and have it accessible by the parties that need it, when they need it. BI goes a long way in helping achieving what you aim for.

6.   Performance Management

Business Intelligence helps track, manage and implement performance goals within your own objectives. With BI making information readily accessible which would ordinarily take hours or weeks to track down and organise, as well as producing real-time data, users can easily organise important information and get moment-to-moment updates. This makes for a great deal of time saving, and allows you to deal with problems immediately.

7.   Eliminate Guesswork

If companies are not using Business Intelligence, chances are that they are basically forced to gamble when making many important decisions regarding management, finances, marketing efforts and more. Through the use of BI, companies can implement a data structure which encourages data-driven decision-making and helps you know the best strategy when it comes to your business, taking a great deal if stress and uncertainty out of running your business.

Business Intelligence offers a variety of capabilities and benefits for businesses of all sizes, and can assist with improving insights and to-the-minute reporting, allowing you to not only gain an in depth understanding of your business, but allow you to make informed and calculated decisions to improve your business.

If you are interested in seeing how Business Intelligence can work for your business, contact Triumph today by clicking here.

What is ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning)?

what is ERP

When your business is growing, it can become difficult to keep everything running smoothly (or profitably!), and can feel as though you are just chasing your own tail as you jump between various programs just to try and keep everything on track.

Through the use of an ERP system however, you can bring all your business processes together, and gain the ability for data to move easily throughout the system. With the ability to collect your organisation’s shared data form a variety of sources, ERP systems can eliminate data duplication and provide data integrity with a single source of certainty. With this ability, you are no longer making staff maintain separate databases and spreadsheets that have to be manually merged to generate reports, and can help streamline the process and improve data visibility when it comes to financing and business management.

So, in a world where we continue to rely on technology being connected everywhere we go, and the internet of things (IoT) becoming the norm, companies have found a necessity of having a cohesive location for their business information, eliminating the need to transfer data between programs or departments.

But what exactly is an ERP system, and how can its capabilities benefit your business?

 

What is ERP?

 An ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) system, is a solution that helps businesses manage their entire backend processes. This includes everything from the finance and accounting side, to procurement, inventory, and supply chains- just to name a few. Simply put, ERP is a centralised program from which all the essential functions of a business can be run.

Many ERP systems come in all shapes and sizes, with some like Triumph ERP offering customisable options tailored to suit your business needs, so regardless of what industry your business is in, there will be an ERP system to help you manage your business.

 

What does an ERP system do exactly?

ERP systems offer a number of uses for all kinds of businesses, but essentially, the ERP system is used to keep all of the crucial data and information from your business in one place, ensuring that everything you need to run your business smoothly is safe, organised, easily accessible, and fully intergrated. When you set up an ERP system for your business, you will only need the single program to keep track of all the moving parts within your organisation- no more misplaced spreadsheets! -and gives you a complete picture of the who, what, where, when, why, and how of the day-to-day operations of your business.

 

How can an ERP system benefit my business?

 Not only can an effective ERP system help you improve business efficiency, but it can also help you make better business decisions for the future.

For a business to improve, transparency within the operations of the business is important. With the capabilities of an ERP system, you can shine a clear light on all aspects of your operations and gain a clear overview of your business, and understand how you could be doing things more efficiently. This will also assist you in making informed, financially sound decisions- which can be difficult when you don’t have the full picture.

Here are just some of the ways ERP can benefit your business:

  • Track your business resources: Gain a better understanding of cash spending, raw materials, personnel, production and more.
  • Understand consumer behaviour: ERP systems can collect the required data so you can analyse behaviourisms, allowing you to see what is effective, what may not be working so well, or even how you can improve product movements.
  • Manage the flow of information: Centralise your data to one main location for easy access for yourself and your staff.
  • Control the costs recorded against jobs and service functions within your business.
  • Estimate, charge-out and bill time and material costs which are raised by a particular job or client.
  • Know the progress of each job: quickly and easily know what has been completed, what materials are being shipped, and more in the one convenient location.

 

Do I need an ERP system?

Not every business may find ERP systems suitable, however, if you have recently had growth within your business, or plan on growing it soon, or perhaps you just want to find a way to organise and improve your workflow, then perhaps and ERP system could be the answer.

Perhaps you don’t need an ERP system at the moment, but have future plans to increase and improve your business model, it’s important to know that it’s much easier to put the necessary infrastructure in place now, rather than try to implement an ERP system when you’re struggling to keep up with demand. ERP systems such as Triumph ERP for example, are not only scalable, but also customisable, so you can be confident about the system expanding when you need it to.

If you already have software in place such as Xero or MYOB and you feel that it does the job you need it to do well, then perhaps you don’t need to transition to a ERP system yet, however it is important to address that there are a few key signs that may be telling you that your business may benefit from stepping up to an ERP system.

Firstly, you may find that your current software doesn’t seem to be keeping up with the growth of your business without additional plug-ins or updates. Although additional plug-ins to software can help you gain a new avenue for data collecting and reporting and hold off an upgrade for a while longer, it is important to understand that with the more plug-ins you add to software like Xero or MYOB, the more locations your data can be sent to, causing various information to be spread out over various locations, rather than formulated in one secure location.

Secondly, your business may have recently gone through a merger or acquisition process. This can cause a dramatic change to business operations, as well as a potential increase of consignments. With the new changes leading to increased data, the recording of information collected simultaneously can avoid confusion through the use of an ERP system.

If you still feel that there is still no room for improvement in the way you operate your business, then chances are you may not need to invest in an ERP system. However, with ERP becoming popular with businesses for their fully-integrated finance and business capabilities, the chances are that your competitor could already be using ERP software.

Sure, no one said that making the most of a fully integrated ERP system would make running a business a walk in the park, but what it will do is help you manage all levels of your business from one secure location, creating ease for your business management needs.

 

 

Triumph ERP supports thriving WA business despite troubled economy

Kirby Marine, boat upside down and welders smiling

Western Australian owned and operated business, Kirby Marine, is traversing the challenging economic climate and is currently experiencing a boom, contrary to many other businesses in WA.

Kirby Marine has been operating since 1988, and has been building New Zealand-designed Naiad rigid-hull inflatable boats under license since 2001 for both private and government organisations for purposes such as rescue, patrol, fisheries, marine safety, recreational use and more.

“We definitely played a bit part in bringing the rigid inflatable boat to WA,” says Mrs Kirby. “In the early days you never saw them but now they’re everywhere and we really pride ourselves on being a part of that.”

“We basically started the business in an oversized garage, and we now have over 2000sqm of production, so we’ve come a long way.”

“We’ve always had our ups and downs but contrary to a lot of other businesses we are doing quite well at the moment.”

Supporting Kirby Marine through those ups and downs is Triumph ERP. The business had outgrown its entry-level software when they decided to upgrade to Triumph ERP, according to Mrs Kirby. “It had become a nightmare as far as the jobs section went; our old system just didn’t have the detail or complexity that we needed in our business,” she said.

Mrs Kirby looked for new accounting software for three years, but found that some were too intricate and expensive, or they didn’t have the level of functionality and detail of information that the business needed.

“We’ve been using Triumph since July 2013 and it’s fantastic; it’s got great complexity while still being affordable and easy to use,” said Mrs Kirby.

“What I really like about it is the ability to track exactly how much a job costs. The Job Costing module was the main reason we chose Triumph.”

Triumph ERP allowed Kirby Marine to move away from their inefficient paper-based purchase ordering system to an integrated solution that eliminated double-handling of data and saved the business both time and money.

“Another great feature of Triumph is the job reporting; it’s user friendly and there is so much information that the system collects, we can report on basically everything,” says Mrs Kirby.

“What Triumph has been able to do is give us a better snapshot of where we’re at with a boat and what it’s actually cost. Unlike our old system, Triumph has the detail of information so we can actually drill down and see exactly what has affected the costs or what has gone right or wrong. Now we can really pinpoint where we need to be leaner and which areas are saving us money, whereas we couldn’t do that before.”

See the full Client Profile on Kirby Marine or visit Kirby Marine’s website https://kirbymarine.com to discover more.

Triumph,Kirby,business

Triumph,Kirby,business

The finished product!