For growing businesses, discussions on whether to implement an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system are commonplace. With businesses constantly evaluating ways to facilitate growth, cut costs and improve operational efficiencies whilst better servicing their customers and achieving their organisations goals, ERP is often a hot topic.
Although ERP implementation does incur an initial (and ongoing) cost, investment in a robust ERP system like Sage 200 can ultimately pay for itself in a number of ways. In this article, we’ll take a look at the ways in which Sage 200 could benefit your business by reducing costs, improving efficiencies and paving the way for sustained growth.
What is Sage 200?
Sage 200 is a best-in-class ERP system and is one of the most commonly used business solutions globally. It handles all core business processes in a singular system, improving accuracy and streamlining processes. There are two different versions of Sage 200 available, Sage 200 Standard and Sage 200 Professional.
Sage 200 Standard is an entirely cloud-based ERP that handles all core financials and commercials. It doesn’t require any on-premise software or servers, and will meet the needs of many small to medium sized businesses.
Sage 200 Professional is an on-premise or cloud hosted ERP that features all the core financials and commercials found in Sage 200 Standard, however additional modules are available, designed to navigate industry specific challenges some businesses might encounter.
For more information about the different versions of Sage 200, you can read our informative article Sage 200 – Standard Vs Professional Compared.
How Sage 200 Can Cut Costs & Increase Profits
Implementing a Sage 200 ERP project within your business can seem daunting financially. From initial investment to on-going cost, investing in future growth can feel like somewhat of a risk. Below, we’ll take a look at how an ERP system like Sage 200 can basically pay for itself with the benefits it can offer!
1. Improve Efficiencies & Cut Operational Costs
An ERP system consolidates all core business processes, across multiple departments and locations, in one centralised place. This eliminates the need for multiple (and often disparate) systems which between them, can often cost as much if not more than the cost of a new ERP.
By centralising all key business functions in one place, processes can be streamlined, information exchange becomes fast and accurate, duplication becomes a thing of the past and more work can be achieved in less time, with less resource and with fewer people.
By increasing efficiencies through smarter working, ERP provides instant cost-saving benefits throughout your organisation. As a business grows, so does it’s workforce but you might be surprised how little your workforce actually needs to expand with an efficient ERP system in place.
One of the most common pieces of feedback from our clients is their amazement at how implementing an ERP facilitated rapid growth and incremental profit with very little investment.
2. Access to Accurate Real-time Data
When making strategic business decisions, access to accurate data in real-time is essential. Decision makers need a 365 degree view of the business at their fingertips, at all times, with data they can trust when making business decisions.
ERP offers this with ease. Not only are data inaccuracies all but eliminated due to automated processes and less reliance on human input, but real-time reporting dashboards and custom reports give members of an organisation the personalised information they need to carry out their roles.
With automated processes in place to facilitate fast and accurate sharing of information, cash flow can also be improved. Purchase orders can be raised automatically and be ready to sign on the relevant persons dashboard instantly, ensuring your business gets paid sooner, without any unfortunate mistakes.
With the relevant information accessible to the relevant users, information silos are eliminated, productivity increases and strategic business decisions can be made with complete confidence, ensuring those decisions will contribute towards continued growth.
3. Create Lasting & Lucrative Customer Relationships
When growing a business, it’s essential to maintain strong customer relationships whilst nurturing potential new customers at the same time. The most efficient way to achieve this is by implementing a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tool, often offered as an additional module by most ERP software providers, including Sage 200.
CRM’s provide one central database of all a business’s customers. Not only do they store basic information such as business and contact information, but also customer interactions throughout the customer’s life-cycle. This includes purchase history, frequency of purchase and purchase habits; invaluable information when forecasting future sales demand.
With a complete view of all customers, their purchase history and the status of their current open orders, strong customer relationships can be maintained, orders fulfilled on time and in full, and potential upsell and cross-sell opportunities can be taken advantage of, increasing revenues and profits.
CRM combined with ERP is quite simply a catalyst for growth. With customer retention high, sales opportunities maximised and new customers onboarding all the time, watch your business grow with ease.
4. Improve Inventory, Supply Chain & Cash Flow Management
For many businesses, some of the biggest financial challenges come from inventory and supply chain management, whilst maintaining good cash flow within the business. No business wants to be sitting on slow moving stock, or alternatively run out of fast moving lines. Both have significant implications for both revenue and cash flow.
Through additional modules, Sage 200 has created solutions for these specific challenges, faced predominantly in industries such as manufacturing, warehousing and distribution and construction. With vast numbers of stock items, suppliers and the logistical challenges in turning everything around, Sage offers a range of additional modules to navigate the potential pitfalls when it comes to inventory and supply chain management.
Barcoding and warehousing functionality means inventory can be accurately tracked at serial and batch number level throughout it’s movements, ensuring stock locations are accurate and reducing the risk of orphaned stock. Intelligent works orders, sales orders and purchase orders processing functionality can suggest new purchase orders to ensure sales demand is met. Likewise, the functionality can suggest moving purchase orders back when sales demand on specific lines is low, ensuring businesses aren’t left sitting on slow moving stock, and increasing cash flow in the process.
With accuracy and traceability of inventory at an all time high, and intelligent forecasting of future sales demand, revenue can be maximised and cash flow improved across the business, allowing for future growth.
5. Reduce IT & Maintenance Costs
As previously mentioned, many businesses use a range of often disparate hardware and software prior to centralising their processes in an ERP. With a range of different software and hardware, maintenance and updates can become a time consuming and costly process.
From maintenance, to software license fees and employee training, it’s often far more cost-effective to centralise all business activity in one ERP system, with one fixed cost per month. If you choose a cloud-based ERP such as Sage 200 Standard, or you choose to host your ERP in the cloud such as Sage 200 Professional on Microsoft Azure, you can also eliminate the cost for on-premise or off-premise managed servers, saving your business additional money.
Not only does an ERP often reduce IT and maintenance costs, it’s also far more scalable as your business grows. Businesses using a wide range of different software often find growth incredibly painful, with disconnected systems struggling to scale easily.
What should I consider when implementing an ERP?
Implementing an ERP is a big step towards streamlining your business for future growth. ERP projects can often be daunting, with the end result potentially running over-budget and being delivered later than anticipated.
Here at Eventura, we pride ourselves on delivering business solutions that work for you, on time and on budget. Our business analysts, business consultants, developers and technicians help you plan your ERP project in immense detail, ensuring no costly and time consuming surprises along the way. Here are some of the questions you should be asking yourself when implementing an ERP project;
- Have you set a realistic budget and time frame for your ERP project?
- Have you analyzed all of your current business processes and requirements?
- Would a cloud-based, cloud-hosted or on-premise ERP suit your needs better?
- How many users need access to your ERP at any one time?
- Will your users need access to your ERP from multiple locations?
- Would an out-the-box ERP solution work for your business?
- Does your business have unique requirements that need to be considered?
- Can you foresee any initial upfront costs such as upgrades to IT infrastructure?
- Does your ERP need to deal with multiple languages and currencies?
- Are there any industry regulations within your business that need to be considered?
- What are the important KPIs/reporting requirements within your business?
These are just some of the important questions when implementing an ERP. In reality, there are many more but a good ERP vendor will always take time to carefully consider all aspects of your business, and deliver an ERP that works for your business from switch on.
Why choose Eventura & Sage 200 for your ERP project?
Eventura have delivered countless Sage 200 ERP projects over almost two decades. Our expert team of business analysts, developers, consultants, technicians and support staff can guide you through your entire ERP projects, from initial scoping through to implementation and on-going support. We deliver projects that work on every level for your business, and deliver them on time and within budget. As providers of managed IT services, we can also help with any additional IT infrastructure required as part of your project.
Sage 200 can revolutionise your business, and has done so for countless businesses across the globe. It’s best-in-class ERP software is used by millions of businesses to streamline their processes and reduce costs, by increasing efficiencies across all areas of the business. With both out-the-box and highly customisable versions, and a mixture of cloud-hosted and on-premise solutions, Sage 200 can be moulded to your specific business needs.
If you’re wondering how much Sage 200 actually costs, you’ll find a wealth of informative information on our Sage Pricing Page, including baseline software costs along with pricing for additional users and modules.
If you’d like to speak with one of our Sage 200 experts to discuss your ERP project, you can request a free call back here.