What is an ERP System?

person using an ERP system on their computer

An ERP system is software used by organisations to manage a range of different business activities all in one centralised place. ERP stands for Enterprise Resource Planning, and as the name suggests, a good ERP system will give you all the tools you need to plan your business resources, including:

  • Finance, budgeting and accounting
  • Project management
  • Sales order processing
  • Stock control and supply chain management
  • Customer relationship management
  • Business intelligence analytics to monitor performance

Benefits of ERP software

Many small businesses and startups may waste time and money investing in short-term multi software packages and spreadsheets, which are quickly outgrown. ERP systems such as Sharp-aX offer a less expensive startup package; it is the same software but supplied with only essential industry-specific modules, including the HMRC MTD module. With the package comes:

  • Better access to customer information to provide better customer service
  • Detailed business intelligence to help streamline and improve system processes
  • Enhanced inventory control to manage stock levels more efficiently
  • Save staff time and costs by automating routine tasks – such as auto-emailing invoices
  • Maintain all business records in one secure place, so nothing gets forgotten or overlooked
  • Total picture of budgets/targets/turnover and profitability by customer, product and the company

Does my business need an ERP system?

As many as 88% of all businesses use ERP software. This suggests your business could benefit too, in the following ways:

  • Strict stock control – essential to maximise valuable warehouse space and improve cash flow
  • Margin control by each product line
  • Improved efficiency, identifying bottlenecks in your processes
  • One centralised record of your business activities
  • Access to all customer and product information, instead of referring to the boss

Things to consider when choosing an ERP system

An ERP system will provide control of everything to do with your business. It is important, therefore, to spend time ensuring that you choose the right software for your needs. Here are some things to consider when choosing an ERP system:

  • Choose your supplier carefully. Look for professional, punctual people
  • What system do your competitors use? Ask companies in your industry what they think of the customer service provided
  • Does the ERP system you are considering use Microsoft Windows software? An MS SQL Server is the industry gold standard for data retention
  • Consider when it makes best sense to go live – your financial year end; a quieter trading time? Start looking now and allow anything from 3-12 months to choose and implement the right system and the people you will be working with for a long number of years
  • Does the company offering the software have good communication and responses – do they answer the phone, and are they willing to answer all your questions?
  • Is the software regularly updated, and at what cost?
  • Is ERP software training included in your package?
  • Check how responsive the software company will be when you need to get hold of them. What is their response time? What’s their disaster recovery policy?
  • What will the system cost to install and maintain? What will be the ongoing maintenance costs? What is included in the support cost and is there a cost for upgrades?

Sharp-aX ERP software

Sharp-aX ERP software is a bespoke ERP system, with functionality tailored to the specific needs of your business. Could it be the right solution for your business? Check out our portfolio of ERP implementation case studies, and see our demonstration videos showing how the software is used.

More importantly, pick up the phone and call us on 01442 505950 and see if anyone answers, and how quickly. Are they warm, helpful and friendly? Are they people you could work with? Try asking for the MD, Jean Freeman.

Posted: 27th April 2022

Posted in: Blog, General News

Sign Up To Our Mailing List