Posts

How can a web-based ERP boost your invoicing process

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In an older post (http://goo.gl/jXGmOi) I discussed how web-based or cloud Financial ERP can help you unlock new possibilities for your Business Processes. The basic argument there was that an open system (like a cloud-based system is, by definition) could involve your customers in a specific business process (like sending a Sales Order, posting a comment that needs subsequent action from within your CRM etc.).The reaction I got from a number of readers was that new best practices could be devised and applied in a very important, so to speak, business process which is of everybody’s interest, big or small: that of invoicing the end-customer. We shouldn’t forget that many small and medium enterprises are focusing their I.T. operations on Accounts Receivable, inside which the invoicing cycle represents a significant part. Therefore, in this post I’d like to focus on this specific issue: how can your invoicing change when you’re using a web-based Financial ERP. 

How does web-based ERP enable Growth Hackers in new ways

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Growth hacking unfolds along two parallel lines. The first one is enabling rapid experimentation across marketing channels using new methods that are easy to implement and fast to pay-off (otherwise, they may be abandoned). The second one is engaging customers in several ways in order to keep them in close distance from the organizations sales “reality” and activity. For example, making sure that new products are instantly known in the customer base, interesting news are immediately propagated in the community etc.In this post I’d like to focus on the latter and discuss how a web-based ERP/CRM integrated solution can decisively assist customer engagement and community building. My intention is to show that SaaS business solutions do not just offer some “technology upgrade” in the organization or solely some cost benefit but can also play a significant role in the growth efforts of the organization. 

Data migration to SaaS

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In the organization’s journey from an on-premise Business Application setup to a Software as a Service one, one of the key factors of success is data migration. Of course, one starts with basic questions like “do I want or need to move to the cloud?”, “Which is the best SaaS solution for my case?”, “Does it address my special requirements?”, “am I content with the reporting/BI capabilities that it offers?” etc. But having answered all of the above, you should take into consideration the data migration issue.This post will point out some very significant issues around this subject, which you need to address and examine; probably in close co-operation with the SaaS vendor of your choice, before accepting their financial proposal and start the journey.

Is User Interface overrated?

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There is a lot of discussion around User Interface design and best practices. Especially in the area of Software as a Service where systems are accessed through web browsers and therefore any enhancements in web technology, scripting languages and market-driven “best practices” are easier to adopt and put into action. I am putting the term “best practices” inside quotes because I think that sometimes market is driving designers to choices around UI that are controversial to say the least.For this discussion I will focus on high-end Business Application software and not low-end, narrow-scope programs; let’s have in mind some ERP or CRM applications. Many times, when users look at a SaaS product expect to see a kind of user interface that they are used to by the usual daily exposure they have on the internet, such as social media, news web sites etc. When they see a more “traditional” design approach they tend to characterize the software “old”, “cumbersome” and “not functional”. And al…

Advanced Customer Ranking techniques in modern ERP

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In this post I will dive into the waters of Customer Ranking techniques and how they can be supported by the existing Small Business ERP that is in use. By the term “supported” I not only mean extracting valuable info as per the customer’s behavior (and thus be able to make decisions about their credit situation) but perhaps also the software being able run the entire process. Of course, such processes do not apply to all kinds of businesses. In this discussion, we assume the business model of a company selling B2B and in credit. Obviously, for a B2C sales model that is being served by, say, an e-shop where all sales are cash, there is no reason to examine low-volume, private customers.

The Invoicing cycle gone web. The tangible benefits

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In this post (http://goo.gl/DhcEZp) I have focused on the Invoicing Cycle and the paradigm shift that takes place when the enterprise utilizes a web-based ERP. I showed how specific business process steps within that cycle can be changed in order to invite customers “in”; make them part of the process instead of just giving them “data” or – worst yet – just an invoice at the end of the cycle. In this post I will continue discussing the same example and calculate tangible benefits, for each of the steps of the process. You’d better first go through the previous post to understand how each step is altered in a web-enabled ERP and then make the comparison with the numbers below.

The Invoicing cycle

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In an older post (http://goo.gl/jXGmOi) I have discussed the general benefits that a cloud ERP could bring to the enterprise, even to the SMB space. I have given some examples of specific business functions and how they can be transformed or at least assisted by the web technology that the cloud ERP inevitably brings with it.In this post I will focus more on one specific business process, that of the customer order placement and order fulfillment and show that not only is a cloud platform (such as a SaaS product) able to optimize the whole process but also enhance customer experience and finally bring tangible benefits to the enterprise, such as faster invoice payment and reduction of open receivables.