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.

Triumph ERP supports thriving WA business despite troubled economy

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 http://kirbymarine.com to discover more.

The finished product!

What is Job Costing, and what does it mean for your business?

job costing

So, what is it?

Job costing means different things to different businesses. However, in general terms, job costing is the allocation of expenses, time, and materials to an individual project, job, item or event. It allows businesses to collect and report revenue and expenses associated with these jobs. Essentially, Job costing can help your business paint an accurate picture of the operational costs.

Job costing is considered to be the most efficient accounting methodology available today.

With a job costing module, your business will be able to view, analyse and track the expenses of the project against the budget. With the ability to draw upon real data in real time, you will be able to make fast and well-informed decisions. Overall, the module will help to improve your businesses operational management.

Who does it work for?

Job costing is mainly used by businesses who have a high dollar value per customer with a relatively low number of customers. Building contractors, subcontractors, architects and consultants often use job costing. If the industry involves undertaking individual projects, jobs, items or events, job costing may be applicable.

How can it help?

Job costing provides the ability to manage business processes and answer questions like:

  • Did we make money on project XYZ?
  • What was our profit on a particular type or group of jobs?
  • How much have we spent on this job to-date, and are we on budget?
  • What resources do we need to complete these jobs successfully?

 

Why should you invest?

Job costing is an important step to ensure that your business stays profitable through individual projects. Other benefits from job costings include:

  1. Better Control

While businesses may be making money, sometimes problems can be hidden in the background. Getting better control of jobs is good for businesses during both upturns and downturns of the economy.

  1. Better Platform for Growth

A good job costing system is the foundation on which businesses can succeed and grow. Not only can it provide a competitive edge, but it also provides a structured framework to expand.

  1. Improved Profitability

By capturing and dissecting all the real costs associated with a job or project, businesses can easily analyse what works and what doesn’t, encouraging a healthy bottom line.

  1. Systemised Approach

A good job costing system should have all the procedures and systems in place to operate a business on a day to day basis. It allows a business to work more like a synchronised machine. Not only does this add value to a company, but the business owner or manager can take a step back from operations. They can now focus on working on the business, instead of working in the business.

Features of Triumph ERP Job Cost Module

  • Comprehensive job costing and management for a wide range of environments
  • Define a hierarchy of cost centres within jobs, jobs within parent jobs, and job groupings at top level
  • Job Quoting creates jobs, budgets, purchase orders/requisitions and inventory requirement lists
  • Job worksheets, customer quotes, supplier requests for quotes, and customer invoices
  • Full Work in Progress recording and reporting, with WIP allocated down to transaction level
  • Capture of expenses for labour, materials, subcontractors, purchases and overheads
  • Optional warnings in job budgets when expenditure is too high, optionally record income in advance
  • Set “cost plus” margin rules on each job centre or cost centre
  • View comprehensive statistics on the job including WIP and purchase commitments

 

If you would like more information on Triumph ERP’s Job costing module and the benefits it can have on your business, contact the Triumph Business Systems office on 1800 653 545, or send an email at info@triumph.com.au.

Power your purchasing and ordering needs with Triumph POS

retail shopping

Gone are the days when the point of sale technology revolved around the simple cash register.  Today, Triumph ERP offers a fully-integrated, multi-function, Point of Sale module that assists you in all your purchasing and ordering needs.

The Triumph POS module provides a suite of tools designed to make total retail, and even wholesale, operations more efficient, easier to manage, and more profitable. Most accounting systems lack integrated functionality to process high volume retail sales and orders. Triumph POS, on the other hand, has increase capacities in integrated retail accounting software systems.

In addition to working in with our fully integrated web shop, here are five things that make Triumph POS standout are:

  1. Comprehensive Functionality – With a fast, interactive touchscreen design and features including barcode scanning and integrated EFTPOS, Triumph POS can complete a wide range of sales tasks. Some of these tasks include Gift vouches, quotes, laybys, damaged goods return, and comprehensive sales reports.
  2. Flexible Designs – Triumph’s POS flexible design allows you to customize the layout and design of the POS screen to suit your business’s operations. Customize buttons, panels or screens for different departments, functions, and even security levels.
  3. Fully Integrated – Like all Triumph modules, Triumph POS is fully integrated with all your business operations, offering full back office functionality. Triumph POS includes comprehensive stock control and debtor management, while supporting most modern POS hardware, printers, cash drawers, pole displays, and scanners.
  4. Mobile Order Taking – Triumph POS functionality is second to none with the ability to operate remotely on an iPad, or tablet. This allows sales people to access the system and generate orders in real time, anywhere, and still be fully integrated with back office software.
  5. Multiple Stores – With Triumph POS comprehensive functionality, you can run the software at multiple stores. By linking multiple stores, you will be able to reserve and transfer stock, detail top selling items by flexible time periods, and identify items sold by location and personnel.


What’s New in Triumph 6.1?

With the recent release of Triumph 6.1, have a look at some of the new features that are now available:

Gift Vouchers

  • You can now track the outstanding balance of the voucher and be repeatedly used until the balance is used up.
  • Gift vouchers can now have an optional expiry period, e.g. 12 months. After this period, they can no longer be used.

New Delivery Transaction

  • There is a new transaction and corresponding business form for orders that are partially delivered or picked up. When you recall an order, you can also easily enquire on all the previous deliveries/collections.

 Proof of Delivery/Signature Capture

  • In addition to being able to capture signatures in Sales Order Entry, you can also capture signatures in Point of Sale.
  • In the past proof of delivery generally meant printing an additional copy of the delivery document, getting the customer to physically sign it, then storing it away for a number of years, and hopefully being able to find it if needed. Triumph has changed this into a modern, paperless web application, that can capture a signature on any touchscreen device, including a mobile phone. The signature is then printed on the transaction document so there is no ambiguity.

Kitchen Orders

  • Point of Sale orders and sales can now be optionally split and printed internally for preparation. For example, an order in a club could be split into food and drinks. The food order could go to the kitchen, while the drinks order could go to the bar.

To learn how to transform the way your business processes orders and purchases, click the download button below for the Triumph Business Systems flyer on “Triumph Point Of Sale” or contact the Triumph Business Systems office on 1800 653 545 or by email on info@triumph.com.au.

Download the free “Triumph Point of Sale” flyer to learn more

 

5 Tips to Get Clients to Pay on Time

woman at a laptop

From late payments to no-payments, getting clients to pay their bills can be a particular pain point for some businesses. Late payments can do more than just throw off your company’s accounting – they can cause major stability problems for your business.

By applying these five tips to your accounting process, your invoices are more likely to be handled on time, every time.

  1. Establish Exact Payment Terms

The number one cause of late payments is due to clients making the wrong assumption about the payment terms. They may think you operate on a net 30 basis or require payment on specific days, such as the 1st or 15th of the month.

When issuing invoices, include a contract section explaining payment methods, due dates, and other relevant details. This outlines your terms and saves any confusing in the future. You could also discuss with your clients the best format for invoices. They may have an inhouse system for submission or out-source to an accounting service, but by establishing the prefer format, invoices are less likely to go AWOL.

  1. Reward early and on-time payment

Give your clients a reason to pay close attention to your invoices by providing a discount for early or prompt payments. Offering a financial incentive is an encouraging approach to what is often adverse situation. While you do want to put an interest rate in place for missed billing deadlines, place high emphasis on the reward first.

How you offer the financial incentive is up to you and your business. You could offer a set discount percentage, such as 5%, for any early payment. Another popular option is to use a sliding discount scale, which starts from a high discount and slowly decreases as the invoice due date approaches.

  1. Offer a Recurring Payment Option

Offering an automatic payment option for clients is a simple step to reduce the worry surrounding billing dates and deadlines. If your business offers the same service each month at a set amount, setup will be straightforward.

However, if the payments vary for month to month, automatic payment can become trickier. Your client may still prefer automatic billing, but be sure to inform them of any changes or additional costs to the invoice.

  1. Automate Your Invoice Process

Missing, incomplete, or unclear invoices can result in late payment or sometimes no payment. Human error, such as forgetting to send the invoice after completing a job or shipping a product, is also common.

Installing an automatic system to send bills and invoices improves the accuracy and efficiency of your accounts. You can also schedule in payment reminder emails so you don’t have to chase around perpetually late-paying companies.

  1. Add Payment Links Directly in the Invoice

If your invoicing system supports it, integrate payment links or buttons directly into your invoices. Making invoices simple and easy to pay reduces the chance of clients becoming distracted or forgetting to pay the bill.

In a perfect world, clients would pay their invoices as soon as they received them. But in reality, we know this doesn’t happen.  By incorporating these strategies into your current payment procedure, you will strengthen client relationships while reducing your financial stress.