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Job Shop Insights


Why Your Job Shop Needs an ERP System

Sep 16, 2016
By: Mark Stevens

Do your current operations software solutions actively help you achieve your growth goals – or do they simply take inputs and generate the outputs you ask them to? Does Accounting use one system for payables and receivables, sales something else for customer orders, and warehouse employees yet another for shipping and receiving?
Many job shops today use a mix of tools – often outdated – to manage their businesses, but newer software solutions integrate processes, provide insights and, with these insights improving outlooks and decision-making, actually help you grow into new markets with new products. If you’re not using an ERP system, you’re missing significant opportunities to build your business profitably.
Putting Meaning to Numbers: Insights Lead to Better Decisions
An ERP system gives you integrated, end-to-end visibility of all facets of your business, from procurement through end-buyer processes and activity, allowing you to identify and act on areas within the organization that need improvement.
There are dozens of other reasons to use an ERP system to track and manage your business. Here are just a few things an ERP system can do for you:
  • Helps you ensure financial compliance and reduce the risks associated with non-compliance
  • Allows you to track all of your equipment to determine which is generating most revenue and which isn’t delivering ROI
  • Helps you determine the right inventory and pricing mix to satisfy your needs and your customers’
  • Tracks inventory to help you avoid having too much (or too little) on hand
  • Automatically triggers orders based on inventory
  • Allows you to create an online employee portal that’s stocked with frequently requested documents and information, like training videos, forms, manuals and others, cutting cut down on training and HR time
  • Tracks outstanding invoices to make contact easier and more accurate
  • Allows for daily reconciling of bank statements
Another Benefit: Speed
Today’s enterprise resource planning systems allow you to do things not possible with older systems. Older software isn’t as fast, meaning there’s significant lost opportunity cost involved with relying on an outdated system.
How long are your order-to-cash, order-to-fulfillment and procure-to-pay processes? With an ERP system today you can automate these operations – with little or no involvement from customer service. This saves time and effort, and allows you to focus on customer service and payables.
How many processes within your organization are redundant? With an ERP system you eliminate duplication and reduce costs associated with “doubling up” on data and analysis. With a newer ERP you have one system used across all business units—with all data integrated. This saves time and significantly reduces the likelihood of errors.
So, if your current system isn’t contributing to the overall success of your company, you need an ERP system— one that works for your industry, along with the expertise of a consultant that’s experienced with job shops. Wipfli works with software vendors like NetSuite, helps select the components that fit your exact needs, helps you make decisions about add-ins that make the system even more precisely aligned to your needs, implements the system with your IT and other constituent teams, and follows up continually afterward to ensure that you’re getting the most out of your investment. 


Mark Stevens
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