Companies utilize enterprise resource planning software to stay competitive in a data driven world. ERP solutions provide visibility of order fulfillment, production processes and track inventory movement in a way that improves procedures and streamlines operations.
Companies that have seen success through ERP implementation should consider adding to their data flows. Customer information and product demand reports can work with manufacturing systems to create a business functioning with a single platform. Companies that utilize integrated ERP and CRM solutions should see improved performance throughout the infrastructure.
ERP aids manufacturing and inventory
When all the moving pieces of an organization are working together, the end result is a much faster and more efficient operation. If manufacturing is using work order details provided directly from the client, the production team can create items tailored specifically to satisfying the needs of the buyer. Last-minute changes requested by consumers are integrated into the design as soon as they occur thanks to company-wide visibility. This prevents wasting materials on products that won’t meet the client’s final demands.
For example, production doesn’t have to wait around for information to get started. By integrating finances, customer orders, resource inventory and management approval, work can begin almost immediately after an order is placed. TechTarget shared the story of a company that wasted 45 days on invoice creation due to the different channels the information had to pass through. After they implemented an integrated CRM and ERP solution, the company was able to create invoices in one day. CRM and ERP integration can be achieved in one of two ways. Companies can either implement a unified CRM/ERP solution like NetSuite or a CRM specific solution like Microsoft Dynamics CRM and having it integrated to their ERP solution.
MSDynamicsWorld.com suggested consumer demands are constantly in flux. The needs of a company’s client base are probably going to change much more frequently than its manufacturing processes, so fast data reporting tools are necessary for tracking the shifting market. A manufacturer needs visibility of these shifts so it can plan resources and procedures accordingly.
ERP aids sales and marketing
Employees who interact with customers also benefit from integration with manufacturing processes.
The Marketing Site stated customer service professionals should utilize these solutions to provide information to consumers. Marketers and sales agents can use production visibility as a persuasion tactic. If a company utilizes top-of-the-line processes or environmentally friendly procedures, it can communicate evidence of these strategies to possible clients.
ERP solutions also satisfy current clients. Insight into warehouse operations allows customer care agents to give buyers updates on their orders. If there is a small problem in shipping or production, the client can be notified immediately before he or she discovers it on their own. Company representatives can work out a solution that satisfies customer concerns and share restitution strategies with manufacturing and the warehouse.
If a company is using a Microsoft Dynamics ERP solution, implementation of Microsoft Dynamics CRM should be fairly simple. The company should work with a certified software partner that has implemented many such integrations. If companies haven’t worked with software providers before, they need to select one that is willing to communicate one-on-one with the business’s implementation team. Or another approach is to work with a solution provider of a unified solution like NetSuite, where ERP with integrated CRM is automatically available because it is one unified solution that offers both CRM and ERP functionality in a single solution.
TechTarget suggested the size of a company’s implementation team is dependent on the size of its organization. Small businesses can use three or four people, one from manufacturing or finances, one from sales and an implementation leader. Larger companies need a representative from each department that is working with the new integrated solution.
The implementation team requires members who are aware of daily operations for every part of the company and can communicate the software’s goals to all employees. ERP with integrated CRM is designed to improve end-to-end processes for the entire business system, so every member of the organization should be aware of how the new solutions improve their tasks and daily performance.