About ERP Software Whitepaper

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1 About ERP Software Whitepaper Many people have heard the term ERP used in a conversation but don t fully understand what it means. This whitepaper will provide information about the processes and advantages ERP can provide. Enterprise resource planning (ERP) is not a new concept. It was introduced more than 40 years ago, when the first ERP system was created to improve inventory control and management at manufacturing firms. Throughout the 70 s and 80 s, as the number of companies deploying ERP increased, its scope expanded to include various production and materials management functions, although, originally, it was designed primarily for use in manufacturing plants. In the 1990 s, vendors came to realize other types of business could benefit from ERP, and in order for a business to achieve true organizational efficiency, it needed to link all its internal business processes in a cohesive and coordinated way. As a result, ERP was transformed into a broad reaching environment that encompassed all activities across the back office of a company to the extranet surrounding. What is ERP? ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) is a type of software designed to manage multiple business processes concurrently. ERP integrates corporate data into a centralized database and operates in real time. This means that whenever information is modified within the system, all the other people who work at the business will immediately see the change. ERP software systems are modular efficiently enabling function as required to be added on demand, spreading costs across months or years. These include CRM (Customer Relationship Management), Business Intelligence, Financial Management, HCM (Human Capital Management), Operations, and SCM (Supply Chain Management). Modularity enables selecting only the features you need. An ERP system combines methodologies with software and hardware components to integrate numerous critical backoffice functions across a company. Made up of a series of modular applications seamlessly linked together through a common database, enabling various departments or operating units such as Accounting and Finance, Human Resources, Production, Fulfillment and Distribution to coordinate activities, share information, and collaborate. Key Benefits for Your Company ERP systems are designed to enhance all aspects of key operations across a company s entire back office from planning through execution, management, and control. They accomplish this by taking processes and functions that were previously disparate and disjointed, and seamlessly integrating and coordinating them. As a result, an ERP system can: Facilitate more efficient completion of day to day tasks. Reduce redundant and overlapping time and money wasting activities by standardizing core procedures. Eliminate islands and silos data silos by creating a single, centralized repository of timely, accurate business data. Enable more effective resource allocation and management Avenue Stanford, Suite E, Santa Clarita, CA (661)

2 Reduce overhead costs. Enhance strategic planning allowing more accurate assessment of needs, and enabling measurement of goals versus outcomes. Automation of routine processes, such as month end and report distribution Does My Company Need ERP? Companies of all types and sizes can benefit from an ERP implementation. Even if business processes and related workflows are relatively smooth across the business, ERP can deliver even greater productivity and cost efficiency. However, the companies who need ERP the most are those whose most critical business procedures are so fragmented and broken that they hinder growth and profitability. For these firms, ERP can help create a business process management mindset, allowing them to define best practices, formalize activities, and streamline cross departmental functions. Additionally, ERP is designed to help companies who have trouble achieving The Single Source of Truth. For example, in many firms, revenue data maintained by the finance department doesn t always match the numbers generated by the sales organization. These disparities can make it difficult to assess financial status, cash flow forecasting, and profitability, and in the case of public companies, report results to investors. ERP systems consolidate and centralize all back office information. Each transaction conducted by a department will be handled, recorded, and managed by a single system. In this way, the most frequent causes of conflicting information such as a lack of integration across departmental applications are eliminated. Common ERP Features Most ERP suites contain a broad range of modular systems to enhance a variety of back office functions, including: Manufacturing includes features for project and process management, engineering, scheduling, capacity management, material requirements planning, and quality management. Supply Chain Management includes capabilities to support order entry, purchasing and procurement, inventory control, planning, goods inspection, returns and claims processing. Financial Management includes functionality such as general ledger, cash management, accounts payable and receivable, and fixed asset management. Project Management includes features for costing, billing/invoicing, time and expense management, and activity monitoring. Human Capital Management includes capabilities to support human resources, hiring and staffing, payroll, training, time and attendance tracking, and benefits administration. Customer Relationship Management Customer communications, marketing campaign, trouble tickets and RMAs, supplier communications, etc. Warehouse Management and Data Collection Barcode and data collection, warehouse management, materials movements, shipping and receiving, labor tracking, etc. Internet Sales Management ecommerce, and corporate portals, customer and supplier portals Business Intelligence and Reporting KPI (key performance indicators), analytics, decision support, forecasting and planning Mobility and Remote Processing Smart phones and tablet devices, laptop and remote access, warehouse management using handheld computers

3 Many ERP environments leverage a data warehouse or operational data store for reporting purposes; this limits the impact of data analysis on the transactional database and prevents the performance slow downs that report generation can impose on the production environment. What to Look for When Choosing an ERP Solution Big bang ERP implementations come with quite a bit of risk. Few businesses have the resources to handle an all atonce deployment. Therefore, it is critical to choose an ERP vendor with a flexible and modular platform, so it can be rolled out in phases. Additionally, since many ERP modules often replace existing business applications, be sure to select a solution that includes comprehensive data migration tools. This will help move data from old applications to new ones in the most efficient and effective fashion. Finally, look for a single source provider who has designed and developed each module in house. Choosing a vendor who has created a complete ERP suite by bolting together various solutions such as those developed by OEM partners or obtained through acquisition of smaller ERP companies can lead to integration and performance issues. Key Strategies for ERP Success Create your Ultimate Vision. Creating purpose and clarity for a successful ERP implementation requires thoughtful crafting of visualizing the entire enterprise. Every aspect, nook and cranny must be included. Any piece not part of the vision is a land mine ready to blow up the project. Considering current state (where you are now), and future state (where you want to be) aligned to a timeline phasing in at a reasonable pace to gain security and acceptance across business units. Build your Infrastructure. This is a capacity and capabilities supporting section including software and hardware and personnel. Getting the enterprise readiness checks in place to assure all systems exist or are planned ensures success when the go live button is pushed. Design your Integration Blueprint. Connecting your systems, software, hardware and training, aligning to your vision enables seamless collaboration for growth and sustainability. Perform your Implementation. This phase constitutes completing all prior effort into a consolidated systematic approach resulting in actualization of your ERP systems. This critical phase is you using your systems and strategies to the very best advantage. Phasing in layer after layer, proofing and testing until all systems are operating like the well oiled machine they were designed to be. Running business as usual with the best of breed Toolchest we call ERP. Consolidating Enterprise Systems has many benefits, but can be difficult to implement due to cost and complexity. Learn about a solution, sold in over 60 countries, that is cost effective to implement and can ensure operational information, produced locally from forecast to financials, integrates into a single consolidated view of global activities. Expect a Low Cost Platform for Integration is a critical present and future concern. One so critical, in fact, it must be one of the cornerstones of your ERP decision. For example: Making disparate systems integrate with your base ERP system should not delay or prevent implementation of enhancements and upgrades to your ERP software. They should be mutually exclusive, yet mutually interoperable through life cycle changes from either sub system. Further, if there are continued costs, apart from predictable enhancement and maintenance fees (license fees are a standard part of the life of software from Microsoft Word to the operating system), those costs will impair or delay your ability to move

4 forward and may stagnate your ERP system to an old version, incapable of maintaining your business future. Compulsory ERP system replacement is the result of enterprise stagnation, due to ongoing operational and cost constraints. Summary There are several advantages to adopting an ERP solution. The first is integrated information and database integration provides access to central data repositories. ERP can also lower operational costs, enabling paperless operations. Other common benefits include advanced inventory management, better access to suppliers, and advanced levels of organizational clarity. ERP features are useful for small and mid sized businesses. Most ERP solutions have the ability to measure KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) increasing value and ROI. ERP solutions keep track of financial data in multiple types of currencies and languages, allowing seamless business in foreign currencies ERP has some challenges as would be anticipated with technologically advanced systems. If your needs do not allow the system as is, modifications are pricey. As technology advances, so does the supporting infrastructure. Ten years ago, ERP software was considered only used by manufacturing and distribution companies. Today s ERP systems deliver significant benefit to almost every business sector, including small business under $1M. Choosing the wrong business software is costly. Selecting future proofed competent software contributes in unseen ways. Such as employee morale, customer satisfaction, supplier management, C level support, marketing decision support, operations planning and materials forecasting, and many more. ERP is considered an investment not an expense. Invest wisely, think future, spend as though the life of your business depends on it and select against your vision, not your pocket book. Some Achievable ERP Benefits Include: Increased cost controls Deep forecasting and revenue cycle insight (KPI) Reductions in operational costs LEAN Expedited sales cycle and customer management Improved materials and services management Stronger inventory and life cycle management Manufacturing integration, effective and efficient Reduced administrative costs On time delivery of goods / services Improved customer satisfaction Improvements in compliance and scheduling 100% data visibility throughout About SYSPRO Software: SYSPRO since 1978, is a complete enterprise resource planning (ERP) software solution for mid sized organizations that is fast to implement, easy to configure, and simple to use. Right from the start, simplicity guides and continues to guide innovations in product design, development, implementation, and usability. SYSPRO has more than 16,000 companies, in over 60 countries worldwide. With SYSPRO, you implement proven industry specific functionality relevant to your needs even for the most highly specialized industries and organizations. The result is a cost effective complete ERP software solution tailored precisely to your unique requirements one that helps you better manage and improve your cash flow, increase efficiency, and impact the bottom line.

5 About Santa Clarita Consultants: Santa Clarita Consultants, as leading SYSPRO Partner, provides technology consulting and ERP software solutions throughout North America. With technical consultants, the company has operations in Santa Clarita, CA. Our clients may expect to save on implementation costs when compared to many SYSPRO partner companies, and SYSPRO s superior value and ease of use when compared to others. While we specialize in small to mid sized companies, well known brands like Hely & Weber, Toyota TRD, SAB Miller, Waldmann Lighting, and Nestles have also selected SYSPRO for their ERP solution. Santa Clarita Consultants grew at a robust rate in 2010 and was recently top page in Google Search performance status among SYSPRO service companies. At Santa Clarita Consultants, we help businesses prosper and expand markets at home and abroad. Formed in 1987, Santa Clarita Consultants has earned the trust of client companies for its suite of visionary enterprise systems and software which enhance the competitive force of small/mid sized manufacturers and distributors. The company s adherence to adopting technology based on the needs of customers is among the reasons why Santa Clarita Consultants enjoys high customer retention. For more information, visit: co.com or call Gerald Poe: 661/ All company names and products mentioned in this release are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders.

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