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Greenville Business Magazine

Five Things Business Owners Should Know About ERP

Oct 13, 2021 10:18AM ● By Adam Drewes

Enterprise Resource Planning, best known by its acronym ERP,  is software that helps a company manage key business functions within a centralized system. Systems like accounting, manufacturing, supply chain management, sales, marketing, HR and more. With all these key business processes running from the same system, businesses can save time, automate processes, and provide robust reporting.

The use of this software has become much more widespread over the last few years, and the market for it is estimated to be worth over $40 billion. Every day, businesses are transitioning away from spreadsheets, simple accounting systems, and siloed software into an ERP platform. Even small businesses are making the switch as they continue to grow.

If you’re considering ERP for your business, here are some things you should know. 

ERP can save your company money. The transition to the cloud has democratized the entry into an ERP. Lower upfront and ongoing costs mean the time to see your return has been greatly reduced. 

ERP systems are no longer a monolithic application. Modern cloud-based systems can easily integrate with other software systems, be modified in ways that reduce upgrade friction, and more closely align with your business processes. This means a higher degree of automation and better real-time information.

With the appropriate ERP system configured, your team can spend less time doing “hero” work just to keep the lights on. Oftentimes, the most mundane tasks — creating reports, staying on top of accurate inventory, tracking the project Work in Progress, processing orders, etc. — are the ones that take up the most time, and have a negative impact on employee morale. Fortunately, most ERP systems allow for the automation of these tasks, so employees will have more time to focus on other, more fulfilling tasks like making an impact on their clients and colleagues.  

Want better analytics? Knowing the immediate financial impact of your operational data and processes is at the core of what an ERP system provides. These analytics can also be more reliable than those done by hand, and the automation allows for time to be saved on checking work, since the work should not need to be checked. In addition, the customizability of an ERP allows for easily accessible dashboards in case you want to view information quickly. 

An ERP system may be essential to the growth of your business. The software that helped you get where you are today may not be the software you need to take you to the next level. ERP systems can scale both size and functionality far easier than simple accounting systems.

Even though there are great products that integrate with some of those systems, they tend to work around problems or don’t handle all the necessary scenarios. You are then back to spreadsheets, manual effort, and lacking of real-time information. 

Finally, if you have found that your business is outgrowing the current software in place, re-evaluate your needs, and see if an ERP system would meet them. The new road to ERP is more agile and accessible than ever.

Adam Drewes is the General Manager of ERP for Kopis, a Greenville- based technology firm focused on providing high-impact software and cloud solutions to businesses and state agencies in the Southeast. With a growing team of more than 40 employees, Kopis is one of the fastest growing software companies in the state of South Carolina.