ERP stands for Enterprise Resource Planning. It is a set of interconnected software applications within an organization that help businesses operate in a smooth manner. The applications are connected to a common database, either writing data or reading data from the database. An example would be a retail shop where the teller enters data about sales, the store keeper enters data about existing stocks, and the manager reads the information to predict when to order for more stocks. In this case, the teller and storekeeper are writing data, the manager is reading.
With the current pace of technological developments, businesses and companies in various industries are increasingly looking towards automation of their processes. Automation using ERP software systems helps the companies to free up human resource from doing repetitive tasks and the freed up resource can be shifted to do other tasks. Different levels of automation exist, at the industrial level where the processes involve manual labour and use of energy and at the accounting and planning levels where there is more of mental processes in play such as planning and accounting.
Is ERP software in use anywhere?
Different companies operating in varying industries of business have processes that are unique to them, and thus use different automation systems. With the advent of computers and the internet, manual / conventional methods of doing business have been increasingly removed from the scene. Assistive technology is taking over and tasks can now be completed faster and more efficiently. There is a marked high rate of adoption of ERP systems in Singapore, as well as a sizeable number of companies that have come up to provide ERP systems in the country.
Enterprise Resource Planning software systems allow for collection, storage, management and interpretation of data from the business’ activities such as;
- Product planning,
- Service delivery,
- Marketing and sales,
- Inventory management
- Processing payments.
The use of a common database requires a database management system that is embedded within the Enterprise Resource Planning solutions. The database management system keeps track of changes in data sets and updates them in real-time. This ensures that the software gives updated information in output, and allows monitoring for advance planning to be easier. ERP systems keep track of available resources, capacity of production and expected output such as client orders. It enables the business to better meet customer needs by being able to tell when orders can be delivered. These systems may appear to be more confined to the back end of overall business operations, but the system often uses a lot of input from the business’ front end too.
Integration and scalability
Businesses in Singapore and the world are today able to keep up with the pace of technology using ERP software systems. This is because Enterprise Resource Planning systems are easily integrated into the overall business systems and can be connected to input and output systems / equipment. Scanners, counters, payrolls and even printers and output screens are often connected to the software. The easy scalability of these systems ensures that any changes in the technological gadgetry of the company are equally easy to update on the software solution; allowing the business to move with current technological trends without making the existing solution obsolete or malfunction. ERP software systems can adapt to new technology and keep the business core running smoothly while giving better control of the business to the managers.
A good Enterprise Resource Planning system gives the business’ managers a real-time view of the core business processes. The different applications that make up the system provide data that enables the system to facilitate better flow of information between the different business functions. They are also able to manage connections to outside stakeholders of the business. They give the managerial staff better data access, improved supply chain management and greatly reduce the complexity of the business by introducing a better design for workflow.
ERP software systems are in use in different industries to keep tabs and control various processes including manufacturing and distribution, retail businesses, government agencies, businesses in the financial business. Virtually any organization or company can use Enterprise Resource Planning solutions to boost their data quality, have better reporting and improved customer relations management. ERP solutions in Singapore are usually very necessary for large companies as well as businesses that are experiencing quick growth. Many medium sized and small enterprises are not employing these systems yet they would benefit immensely from installing them. Businesses that are not performing well should consider ERP software solutions as one of their remedial measures in dealing with falling profits and poor human resource utilization. It is also noteworthy that ERP systems help in lowering the cost of doing business while giving you better business analytics and ease of complying with industry regulations set by government.
Beat the competition
Companies are nowadays operating in very competitive environments. Industry shifts occur often and companies have to keep up with changes for them to remain in operation. Focus is today placed on marketing the products and services offered by the company. This means that companies have put in place software systems to take care of repetitive tasks. This frees up the human resource available to the organization so that they can focus more on marketing. The company that employs the latest ERP system today has the best chance to remain afloat in the industry of operation, and it is no wonder that companies are now competing to have the best and most recent systems installed. The benefits of using ERP applications, especially cost reduction and timely reporting have also made many companies adopt these systems.
The companies that install and maintain these solutions are also locked in a competition between themselves. There are a number of ERP companies that are providing different customized ERP solutions in Singapore. These ERP companies and all others worldwide have to make sure that they have the most efficient system for their clients. The ERP software systems that are provided by these companies also have to be very user-friendly. Another factor of competition among companies offering these solutions is efficiency and effectiveness. ERP companies have to ensure that their solutions suit the unique needs of each client company, and that the solution helps the company once it is installed. It comes as no surprise therefore, to say that the ERP providers who will be able to provide the simplest and most efficient user-friendly Enterprise Resource Planning systems are the ones who will turn out to be the pioneers of the ERP provision arena.
In my line of work, I come across many things. This thing of ERP is just one of the many, it is an article I researched for a client who then claimed they could not use it. I hope it adds to your knowledge pool. ~~Anonymous Guest Author.