How Integration is Changing Business Software Solutions
Many companies, having undergone sufficient growth, eventually run into a barrier to operational capacity. At such a time, an internal struggle can result as your employees sprint in a hopeless attempt to keep up with demand. It’s important in these situations to resist the instinct to hire to keep up with demand, and instead take a second to recognize where in your business process you are being bottlenecked by the growth. Often when you do so you’ll find that rather than a lack of employees (or ineffective ones) holding you back, it’s more likely the case that your current IT set-up is insufficient groundwork to meet current demands for service and support.
The problem is, as companies grow they adopt and add onto their IT infrastructure where it appears necessary, resulting in a tangled mess of business systems and processes. This usually starts with the implementation of a standalone accounting system. What companies fail to recognize in this seemingly obvious decision is that they are creating future inefficiencies for their business. These inefficiencies stem from the IT requirements of the business as compared to the capabilities of a standalone system.
It’s a tale told time and time again; many small or midsized businesses jump headfirst into the most popular piece of software for their current needs without consideration for how they will eventually leave the platform (if ever), and how they plan to integrate these systems with the rest of their business IT as they move forward. This leads many companies with systems that no longer meet all their requirements to create a Frankenstein’s Monster of interconnected systems, thereby bring their business technology in line with their current IT needs. This is ultimately detrimental to a company’s bottom line, negatively affecting the experience of customers, internal turnaround time and the ability to scale.
So if a standalone accounting system is a glorified stepping stone to internal IT headaches and poor internal communication, what then is the alternative, and what sense would it make to simply skip the standalone finance management system entirely? The answer is Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP).
And Now for the Alternative
It’s true that when starting out, many organizations prefer to find the most inexpensive and quickest way to solve their current problems. The trouble with this is that it will ultimately lead you towards a bigger problem than the one you began with. This, of course, is the overabundance of standalone systems, which weave together disparate departments with little semblance of order or organization. With this chaotic web of interconnected, yet disconnected business systems all competing to assist your business’ core requirements, it is more than likely time to consider the upgrade to the aforementioned integrated ERP solution.
While it is certainly easier to skip this headache to begin with, it’s still more than possible for your business to be saved from the clutches of system over-abundance and overload. Ultimately, if your company has outgrown its current business systems - or if the sheer number and complexity of systems feel like a rope around your business’s neck, ripping out the old mess of systems and replacing them with a single unified platform could be more than beneficial; it could save the business. So, when your business has outgrown its current solution, problems in performance become evident.
If your business, like many others, is looking to expand its operations using a limiting standalone finance system alongside a plethora of other disparate systems, you may want to look elsewhere. Integrated accounting software with your other business systems in the form of ERP has numerous advantages for business that are looking to expand their operation or remain competitive in the shifting business landscape.
By adopting an ERP solution, particularly one in the cloud, your business is setting itself up for success, staying a step or two ahead of the curve. Thus, not only are you taking advantage of the latest and most effective technologies, your business is able to avoid a poorly planned platform which handles your processes sub-optimally, holding you back from potential successes.
Further benefiting these adopters of an ERP upgrade is the degree to which that industry is increasingly moving towards the cloud as a primary platform. Indeed, with this increased adoption of the cloud platform, those using an ERP solution will find they have increased flexibility to adapt to changes in the market and the expectations of their customers. Within this cloud-based ERP solution, businesses can benefit from far more than a platform which meets their internal accounting requirements; they benefit from a management system for their financials, inventory, clients, and happenings at the point of sales.
When your finance system is integrated with your other ERP services, you benefit from increased visibility, a better understanding of performance indicators, improved customers relations and a seamless design. This seamless design stems largely from the integrated nature of the platform as purchases completed at the point of sale automatically inform departments and team members to whom it concerns.