ERP Evaluation Checklist: 5 Important Things to Consider

What kind of ERP solution should you get for your business? Or, if you already own ERP software, the question may be more along the lines of “How should I upgrade my ERP?” To help you in your decision making process, Acumatica has devised a useful ERP evaluation checklist. We highly recommend it. If nothing else, you will find it thought-provoking as you assess your business management software options.

The checklist suggests looking at ERP from five separate angles:

  1. Productivity, i.e. how an ERP solution can make you and your staff more productive
  2. Functionality, i.e. what the solution actually does regarding daily accounting and business management functions and beyond
  3. Technology, i.e. how the product leverages technology in terms of usability, customizability and maintainability
  4. Value, i.e. how the product maximizes features and functions versus cost for the usable lifetime of the product
  5. Risk, i.e. how the product minimizes risk and facilitate security

Each of these angles translates into a detailed focus area on the checklist. Under productivity, for instance, the checklist contains nine questions. They touch on subjects like how easy the solution is to learn and whether it offers Wikis. Here are a few highlights.

Productivity

The checklist asks if the solution provides true universal availability. Is there access to the ERP system from any device, anytime? Does it enable employees to work from home, or on late/weekend shifts out of the office. Can personnel in the field use it on mobile devices? These have been good questions for some time now, especially given how limited certain legacy ERP solutions can be when it comes to mobility and universal availability. However, in the current moment, when virtually every American is working from home, it’s absolutely essential.

Functionality

The Functionality section of the checklist raises the issue of multi-entity accounting. This won’t be a big issue for some businesses. However, if you operate more than one corporate entity, multi-entity financial management and reporting functionality can be big time-savers. The checklist asks if a proposed ERP solution can support multi-company, multi-warehouse and international companies. It probes whether the solution can deal with financial consolidation between multiple entities, intercompany eliminations and reconciliations. These are all time-consuming and error-prone workflows if they have to be done by hand, toggling between separate accounting systems.

Technology

Business managers who evaluate ERP options may relegate the technology questions to the IT department. This is sensible, up to a point, but it’s wise to  understand as much as possible about the technology you’re buying. The checklist poses questions that are certainly relatable to a non-technologist. For instance, it asks if all functionality of an ERP solution is accessible through the Internet. This is natural for a cloud ERP like Acumatica, but it is not guaranteed by every ERP vendor. If a solution requires a separate software installation on the user’s device, that’s a reason to be circumspect about adopting it. That software will be something to maintain for all time.

These are just a few of the interesting details contained in the checklist. If you’re interested, we can walk you through the checklist and address the inevitable questions that arise. That’s the whole point of the checklist, in any case. It’s meant to make everyone smarter about their ERP choices. We can help fill in the blanks and point out where certain features and functions could benefit your unique business situation. Contact us to learn more or see a demo of Acumatica.

Additional ERP Evaluation Resources

Compare the Top 14 Cloud ERP Solutions

6 Signs Your Business Has Outgrown QuickBooks

Why Growing Companies Need ERP Software

Acumatica Cloud ERP: Distribution Case Studies

As an Acumatica partner, we have worked with many clients on the implementation of Acumatica Distribution Management Software. It’s a cloud-native ERP solution purpose-built for companies in the distribution business. The software helps companies manage supply chain and logistics activities, including inventory and warehouse management, procurement and order management.

Clients can add modules for Requisition Management, Purchase Order Management and Advanced Financials. They can also integrate fully with Acumatica Customer Relationship Management (CRM), Field Service, Manufacturing, Finance and Accounting and Project Accounting.

International Pipe Gains CRM, Boosts Productivity with Acumatica

Acumatica has racked up an impressive portfolio of customer success stories for its Distribution Management Software. For example, a pipe and supply business found the software’s ability to manage distribution data to be helpful in running the company. As their Chief Strategy Officer put it, “Acumatica allows my focus to be more on the business rather than wondering where I go to find the information I need. Knowledge is power and the quicker you can get to the knowledge, the better off you are.”

Key Results: 

  • Saved hours and greatly increased productivity with easy-to-use software
  • Gained sales lead tracking and CRM
  • Reduced time to close monthly books from 15 days to 3
  • Achieved visibility throughout three companies and 15 pipe yards
  • Built custom dashboards and reporting functionality to make better data-driven decisions
  • Replaced manual Excel spreadsheets, saving time

View the full case study here.

Rapid Field Service Growth Demands Flexible, Affordable ERP

An IT Manager at an oilfield services company echoed this sentiment, saying, “Acumatica allows us to concentrate on the business itself while not worrying about the software. All the data goes into one database, so it’s one version of truth.”

Key Results:

  • Gained a high-value, affordable foundation that can handle rapid growth
  • Gained transparency into operations, finance and inventory
  • Streamlined operations and processes
  • Avoided $175,000 in user-fee costs and about $250,000 in customization charges
  • Acquired foundation to scale operations including field services

View the full case study here.

Superprem Industries Moves to the Cloud to Gain Insights and Empower Employees

Other business managers praised Acumatica Distribution Management Software for its usability. A Chief Business Development Officer at a furniture and fixtures business remarked, “I am constantly amazed with how Acumatica seems to just ‘work.’ Anything we seem to imagine the system could do, we’ve been able to make happen without the assistance of external modifications.”

Key Results: 

  • Gained deeper insight into warehouse distribution operations
  • Improved inventory tracking and invoicing
  • Saved hours by streamlining and automating accounting tasks
  • Provided fast mobile access to financial data
  • Improved and streamlined company-wide communication

View the full case study here.

Indonesia’s OneMed Gains Affordable Foundation for Rapid Growth

Users also value the solution’s efficiency. According to a Co-Owner & Development Manager at a healthcare equipment company, “Acumatica will speed up our business process and make us more efficient, benefiting our business as well as the clients we serve.”

Key Results:

  • Gained an affordable system for rapid growth with unlimited user licenses
  • Eliminated computer crash delays that hindered staff productivity
  • Recouped days wasted waiting for financial reports
  • Collected crucial information previously uncaptured
  • Saved money by not outsourcing report creation
  • Achieved peace of mind by not worrying about system crashes

View the full case study here.

Fast Growing Global Beauty Care Unleashes Growth with Acumatica ERP

Other customers liked Acumatica’s licensing model. A Director of Operations & IT at a beauty supply business commented. “Almost every other ERP software charges monthly per user, which inevitably has executives trying to limit how many people really need simultaneous access. Acumatica’s novel way of charging based on transactions is well-suited for future growth.”

Key Results

  • Process data faster with fewer workarounds and errors
  • Gained a real-time financial view of the entire operation
  • Revolutionized the way they paid factories, eliminated potential invoicing errors
  • Avoided additional headcount needed with increased transactions
  • Saved money and avoided expensive per-user licensing enabling more users to access the system
  • Achieved easier to access data through use of generic inquiries and dashboards
  • Increased productivity so the Director of Operations could grow sales rather than worry about IT

View the full case study here.

Learn More About Distribution Management

These are just a few examples of customers expressing their success stories with Acumatica Distribution Management software. If you think your company could follow this path to operational improvements using Acumatica for distribution, contact us for a free consultation and product demo.

Additional Distribution Resources

Optimize Your Quote-to-Cash Process and Improve Customer Service

Top Reasons for Installing a Warehouse Management System (WMS)

5 Reasons Distributors Need ERP Software

Why Every IT Executive Needs Cloud ERP Software

If you’re an IT lead for a business, should you want cloud ERP software? Setting any knee-jerk “love-the-cloud” vs. “hate-the-cloud” responses, the question is worth some discussion. In our view, every IT executive needs cloud ERP. The way you look at it may depend on how you envision your role in the business.

What we mean by “Cloud ERP”

First, let’s define what we mean by cloud ERP. In this article, the concept of cloud ERP refers to full-featured enterprise resource planning software, hosted in the cloud, with a complete range of business operations and financial functionality. It is not “ERP light.” Cloud ERP also means cloud-native software, built from the start to work in the cloud. Legacy ERP solutions that get ported the cloud have a number of innate difficulties that affect how well they can support the C-level IT exec’s mission.

Bear in mind, also, that cloud ERP might easily be part of a hybrid cloud strategy. It’s not all or nothing. Many companies are taking this approach. They’re adding cloud ERP functionality incrementally, phasing in new features while methodically phasing out on-premises systems as time and requirements permit.

What is your job?

This is not a trick question. The issue of whether you need cloud ERP will depend on your role, especially as it seen by senior management. If your job is to run a data center and support desktop machines, then cloud ERP might seem like an abstract concept or even a threat to your job security. If it isn’t hosted on-premises, what will you do all day?

However, if your job is to deploy technology for maximum business impact, then it shouldn’t matter where ERP is hosted. In that case, you will find a lot to like with cloud ERP. Cloud ERP enables you to get the most out of ERP without extensive IT support required. It takes many management and support hassles off your plate while providing a more flexible and quickly adaptable business management solution.

Plus, if your job involves managing IT as a cost center, cloud ERP can be transformative. There is a little to no Capital Expenditure (CapEx) with cloud ERP. As legacy ERP comes out of the data center or co-lo facility, you put those racks to new uses or stop using them altogether.

Reducing pain

Where does it hurt? Being an IT lead is a high-stress job. Cloud ERP can be a pain reliever, eliminating the difficulties that arise with disparate business systems, e.g. unsupported technology, proprietary application integration interferences, rigid architectures and poor analytics.

Acumatica cloud ERP, for example, is relatively easy to customize with standard development tools like Microsoft .NET and C#. It can integrate with other software products using standards-based APIs and Acumatica’s web services. Cloud-native ERP solutions like Acumatica also make it simple to deploy their full functionality to mobile devices and responsive webpages.

Cloud ERP then provides a streamlined path to sophisticated, organization-wide data analytics. If your job description includes helping the company make more strategic use of its data, cloud ERP is a great resource. The cloud makes it possible to ingest and store large volumes of data from multiple sources and deliver high-performing data visualization and reporting. You can give the people in your organization access to the data and tools they need to develop deep insights.

We have worked closely with many senior IT leaders on assessing the suitability of cloud ERP for their organizations. If you want to learn more about Acumatica cloud ERP and how it could help your business, let’s talk. Contact us for a free consultation and demo.

Additional ERP Resources

6 Signs Your Business Has Outgrown QuickBooks

How ERP Software Can Save Your Business Money

How ERP Software Solves Your Business’s Top Financial Management Challenges

Acumatica 2020 R1 New Features

Acumatica 2020 R1 was introduced in Las Vegas on January 28, 2020. A few changes are being made to the Cloud ERP system, with several additions that will increase functionality. Acumatica is clearly committed to advancing technology and expanding the user experience. This latest semi-annual release of the software was discussed in keynotes and breakout sessions at the Acumatica Summit 2020. Some of the most important features of the new version were revealed, including:

Integration of Omnichannel Commerce with BigCommerce

BigCommerce integration provides omnichannel sales support, so organizations can integrate sales, delivery and customer service. This added functionality expands how a company can interact with customers and supports B2B and B2C models.

Integration with Adobe Document Cloud

Acumatica now works with Adobe Sign, so businesses can capitalize on cloud-based e-signatures. Documents can be sent, signed and tracked using a browser or mobile device. This new feature enables more streamlined document management and contract management.

Usability Improvements

Users can now create expense reports with a mobile camera. Additional mobile functionality includes recording travel and break time on service calls and attaching captured images to data records. A quick add button allows faster access to data entry screens. Dashboard caching and pivot table percentage calculations, along with distinct counts, have been added to simplify reporting,

Updated Modules

In addition to BigCommerce integration, Acumatica Payroll has been improved to minimize overhead expenses. You can run in-house payroll processes from the software to speed paycheck delivery. Added features include salaried and hourly workers, integrated taxes and tax forms, deductions and benefits, flexible payroll periods and timecard integration with overtime rules.

Updated Functions in a Single Business-Wide Software Suite

All industry editions of Acumatica have been enhanced with new features. Acumatica 2020 R1 expands sales and warehouse operations for fast generation, tracking and management of inventory-related items. Warehouse Management now supports rapid fulfillment with wave and batch picking. Acumatica’s new international depreciation enhancements have been added to support companies focused on worldwide expansion.

New project management tools allow users to manage more projects. For example, project balance reconciliation has been simplified, while you can track project progress with improved daily field reports. Weather data (available via the ClimaCell service), photo logs and other data can now be added to reports. You can now also track payments and retainage by lines in accounts receivable.

Acumatica 2020 R1 also lets users track production and costs with native shop floor data collection, which can improve manufacturing operations. The ERP now supports advanced planning with capable-to-promise and what-if scenarios as well. Also highlighted during the release event were Open APIs for integrating artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies to drive automation and efficiency.

About Acumatica Cloud ERP

Acumatica Cloud ERP is a complete business management solution that supports manufacturing, distribution, retail/e-commerce, manufacturing and construction industries. It provides a complete audit trail of changes and full CRM functionality to improve customer support.

We have worked with many companies in the implementation of Acumatica. The software scales with your business as it grows. To learn more or schedule a free demo, contact us.

Additional Acumatica Resources

Why Acumatica Outpaced NetSuite on the Most Recent G2 Survey

Acumatica Financial Management

Optimize Your Quote-to-Cash Process and Improve Customer Service

Business isn’t that complicated. The customer wants his or her order. You want your money. The fewer complications the better. The sooner the customer gets the order, and the sooner you get the cash, the happier everyone is. Alas, things are not always so simple. More than few things can disrupt the quote-to-cash process. Software innovations, like Acumatica Cloud ERP for distribution, are making it easier to improve cash flow and customer experience, however.

The Quote-to-Cash Process

We all understand the quote-to-cash process intuitively, but it’s worth taking a closer look to see how many people, workflows and software applications it can take to execute. The process starts with a moment of customer contact where a salesperson gets information about what the customer needs. This could occur by phone, email or online quote request form. The salesperson then prepares a price quote, often using a productivity tool like Microsoft Word or a sales order processing application.

If the customer accepts the quote, the salesperson may then have to enter the resulting sales order, manually, into an order management system. From there, the warehouse or manufacturing operation has to fulfill the order. This may involve yet more manual rekeying of order data into a distribution management and logistics system. Once delivered, the order can be invoiced, which usually requires an invoicing system that may or may not be part of the company’s accounting software package. When payment comes from the customer, the cash deposit posts in the general ledger software.

Even when these separate processes and software packages are connected, the overall quote-to-cash process can still be cumbersome. A lot of people/hours get spent keeping on top of orders and their fulfilment through the final receipt of cash. There are also many opportunities for errors and confusing situations that can negatively affect customer service. For example, if one item out of ten quoted is out of stock, that will change the quote amount. This, in turn, may generate back-and-forth communications with the customer, adjustments to invoices, delays in order processing and so forth.

Improving the Quote-to-Cash Process

Modern automated systems like Acumatica Cloud ERP provide you with features, integrations and process orchestrations that streamline the quote-to-cash process. By connecting the various elements of the process and giving the different people involved a unified view of what’s going, the software helps improve cash flow while maintaining a good customer experience.

Now, with a single connected system, your people can take orders accurately, ship promptly and avoid billing errors. You get your cash faster. Reporting and data visualization tools give you insights into potential issues with slow payers, delayed deliveries and inventory control challenges.

Order automation enables order-taking over the phone, via websites and point-of-sale (POS) devices. The cloud ERP is able to display item availability and apply discounts automatically. It can be configured to show a variety of delivery options. The order then gets processed without any rekeying of information. The automation and orchestration continue through invoicing and accounting processes that complete the “to cash” step of the process.

We have worked with many companies on the implementation of cloud ERP to improve order-to-cash and the broader operations of a distribution business. Contact us to learn more or see a demo of Acumatica.

Additional Distribution Resources

Top Reasons for Installing a Warehouse Management System (WMS)

Recommendations for Selecting a Distribution ERP Solution

Looking at 2020 Distribution Industry Trends with ERP in Mind

4 Strategies for Smarter Inventory Control

Inventory control affects a range of business outcomes, including profitability, operational efficiency, product quality and customer satisfaction. Despite its importance, inventory control is often neglected, perhaps due to the traditional difficulty of doing it well. With the advent of cloud-based Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) solutions with dedicated inventory management features, this is starting to change.

Acumatica recently published a paper on the topic, highlighting four strategies for smarter inventory control: 1) Maintain accurate records; 2) Proactively plan to avoid shortages; 3) Focus on improvement; and 4) Reduce lead times and lot sizes by reducing fixed ordering costs. This article offers an overview of these strategies.

Understanding the Financial Impact of Inventory Control

Before getting into smarter inventory controls, it’s worth taking a moment to review three prominent cost impacts of inventory management.

  • Cash flow and the cost of capital—Inventory tends to use up cash, unless it’s being sold before the vendor’s bill becomes due. Most companies do not have such a fast cash cycle. Instead, inventory is ordered and paid for weeks or even months before it gets sold or incorporated into other products. In addition to diverting cash from operations or investment, inventory carrying costs show up as interest expense on the income statement.
  • Administrative costs of inventory management—Placing an order for products to be held in inventory carries an administrative cost. Someone, or some group of people, must do the work of placing the order, arranging for the purchase order, reconciling vendor invoices with purchase orders, authorizing payments to vendors and so forth. All of this costs money.
  • Storage and transportation costs—Inventory storage and logistics come at a cost, too. The warehouse facility has a cost to operate. Freight and logistics suppliers cost money as well.

Quality is an indirect, often intangible issue associated with inventory management. If a vendor ships defective inventory, that creates an administrative burden for returns and refunds. If customers receive defective merchandise, that magnifies the admin problem and adds customer relationship problems to the mix. Generally, the longer inventory sits on the shelf, the harder it becomes to locate the defective goods.

Strategy #1 – Maintain Accurate Records

Record-keeping is essential to effective inventory control. This is a well-known fact, but it’s still surprising how challenging it can be to implement good inventory records at many companies. The culprit is often systemic in nature, with manual processes and re-keying of inventory data from one system into another, e.g. from a warehouse management solution into ERP. Alternatively, record-keeping falls apart due to physical/digital handoffs. For example, if the warehouse receives a shipment of inventory and then places it on multiple shelves, the storage locations may get lost, or at least not tracked, by any central system. Accidental, unnecessary reorders or unawareness of defective goods may result.

Strategy #2 – Proactive Planning

Proactively planning for replenishment is a wise practice in inventory control. But, when is the right time to replenish? This is a simple but highly challenging question to answer. At stake are issues like the business risks of running out of an item, which can affect production and customer satisfaction. Per-unit costs, which may go up in smaller orders, can be a factor, as well as shipping lead times, shipping costs and so forth. Learn more about measuring warehouse productivity.

Material Requirements Planning (MRP) software offers a solution that enables proactive planning. It calculates replenishment quantities and optimal order timing—in alignment with the master production schedule. Distributors can use comparable Distribution Requirement Planning (DRP) tools. Both types of software work from a sales forecast and work backward in time through the distribution network (DRP) and Bill of Materials (BOM).

Strategy #3 – Focus on Improvement

Innovations in inventory management software also make possible an ongoing focus on improvement. Businesses that are successful at inventory control seldom sit still. They are always looking for ways to get better at the process. Plus, the dynamics of the business are always in flux, so the inventory control approach that worked last month may longer be optimal. Software for inventory control enables users to improve their inventory accuracy. Users can also get better at forecasting replenishment quantities and reducing order lead times.

Strategy #4 – Reduce Lead Times and Lot Sizes

The ideal inventory order lead time is zero. The instant the item is needed, it shows up on the shop floor or in the distribution warehouse. Of course, zero lead time doesn’t happen, though software can get a company pretty close. “Just in time” or same-day delivery of needed inventory are now common. The challenge is to predict variability. One day, a company might need 10 units of a particular SKU. The next day, it will need 12. If it orders 12 every day, it will start to accumulate a backlog, with carrying costs and all the other problems that come with inventory.

Control Your Inventory With Cloud ERP Built for Distribution

As these four strategies suggest, software and data analytics capabilities are at the heart effective inventory control. Making fast, smart decisions about inventory—and leveraging technology to automate inventory management processes across multiple systems, is only possible with the right software tools. Acumatica Distribution Edition embodies these capabilities. We have extensive experience working with companies on the implementation of Acumatica for inventory control. To discuss how this technology could benefit your business, or to see a demonstration of Acumatica’s inventory control features, please reach out to arrange a meeting.

What Types of Software are Helpful for Growing and Large Businesses?

The role of software in business has evolved from “what’s that?” to “nice to have” to “have to have” to today’s essential truth, which is that software is the heart of the businesses. It’s hard to imagine a business of any size or substance operating without multiple types of software running across the organization. The software industry has responded, offering a wide range of options for companies of different sizes. There are small business software packages, solutions for mid-sized companies and enterprise-scale applications.

If your business is growing, and we hope it is, what types of software are helpful as you grow? Having worked with many clients whose companies were in growth cycles, we have found the answer to this question is far from simple.

First, a growing company needs software in all of its operating areas. It needs Customer Resource Management (CRM) and sales management software in its sales and marketing departments. It needs HR software in HR. Accounting needs accounting software. Most businesses also typically need Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), distribution management, field service management and warehouse management. It needs a relational database management system (RDBS) along with data visualization and reporting tools. These needs are in addition to desktop operating systems and productivity (e.g. Microsoft Windows and Office), file storage solutions and phone systems (VOiP) as well as any number of IT management solutions for running data centers, helpdesks, disaster recovery and on and on.

As you might see, a growing company needs a lot of software. The big issue, however, is management. For every piece of software, there needs to be (or should be) someone, or a team of people, responsible for supporting and maintaining it. In a large enterprise, there can dozens of people assigned to maintain a single application. There will be people tasked with keeping it running, securing it, backing it up, updating it and so forth. Software admin can be a costly, people-intensive area of a business. A poor choice of software tools can compound admin requirements.

Should you move to the cloud, with all this software? The maddening answer, as is so often the case in IT, is “it depends.” No two companies have the same cloud vs. on-premises dialogue. Sometimes, the best move is to leave an existing on-premises solution where it is. However, new cloud solution options are making the whole “should we move to the cloud?” discussion a lot clearer and simpler. With the advent of comprehensive cloud ERP solutions like Acumatica, it is now possible to run a wide spectrum of business software in a cloud/Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) model.

Acumatica is modular, with the ability to add functions like CRM and HR as needed. As cloud software, it can scale in huge increments, on demand. Admin requirements fall precipitously as the supplier’s admin staff takes over many of the laborious processes you used to have to do yourself. Without a solution of this type, growth will cause you to go through painful upgrades to software as you inevitably outgrow your earlier generation of business software.

If your business is growing and you want to think through the best software solutions to enable the smoothest possible expansion, let’s talk.

Additional Resources

Why Growing Companies Need ERP Software

How ERP Software Can Save Your Business Money

How ERP Software Solves Your Business’s Top Financial Management Challenges

Top Reasons for Installing a Warehouse Management System (WMS)

It seems as if, for years, the warehouse was the site of rusting steel shelves and low expectations. Things have really changed. Today’s warehouse is an operational center, where customer-facing strategies come to life with services like same-day delivery and automatic stock-out notifications. These changes have not arisen out of nowhere. Competition from online businesses and customers’ demand for seamless, omnichannel experiences have transformed the warehouse. So has software. Warehouse Management Software (WMS) makes possible many of the innovations that put warehouse operations into your strategic planning toolkit.

With that in mind, here are some reasons to consider adding a WMS to your business.

  • Streamline processes—A WMS systematizes warehouse workflows like picking and label creation. The results include a reduction in errors and improvements in warehouse worker productivity.
  • Automate warehouse operations—With a WMS, you can automate operational processes and routines packaging, PO receiving, putting away, merchandise transfers and physical counts. The latter is accomplished with integrated barcode scanners. Customized workflows and forms eliminate the risk of people skipping important steps. They can also cut down on employee training costs.
  • EDI integration—Many suppliers still use Electronic Data Interchange (EDI), so it’s a good idea to be compatible with this mode of company-to-company order processing. A WMS should enable full EDI compliance, including the 856 Advance Ship Notice (ASN) standard. This makes it possible to use EDI to electronically communicate order and shipment details.
  • Track lot and serial numbers—The WMS gives you the ability to stay on top of serial numbers and lot numbers. They get scanned and then printed on the pick list and packing slip. This way, there is never a mistake about what was picked and shipped.
  • Operate hands-free—A WMS like Acumatica’s provides a pre-printed smart scan sheet that lets warehouse employees interact with the system using only their scanners. This is useful for people who have to wear gloves on the job. Scan sheets might include commands like “complete shipment,” “next/previous box,” and “remove item.” In addition, the sheet may contain audible and visual indicators as well as warnings that offer instant feedback if the wrong items are picked and so forth.
  • Generate useful operational data—The WMS can create data that’s useful for managing the overall business. For example, a WMS can report on on-time shipments, stock-outs, or “shrinkage” that might reveal a problem with theft. Warehouse managers can use data visualization and reporting to stay on top of the warehouse in real time.

Acumatica WMS is a module of the software’s Distribution Edition. As a part of the Acumatica system, it can easily integrate with your company’s ERP, finance, field service management and other software applications. Such integration helps make the warehouse a core part of business operations. It can also integrate Acumatica Commerce Edition. This helps you manage advanced warehouse functions for wholesale, manufacturing, retail and other businesses.

We have worked with many companies on the implementation of Acumatica WMS. If you would like to see a demo or learn more about how Acumatica WMS can benefit your business, let’s talk.

Additional Distribution Resources

Digital Transform in the Distribution Industry and How Cloud ERP Can Help

Looking at 2020 Distribution Industry Trends with ERP in Mind

Benefits of ERP Software for Distribution Business Management

6 Signs Your Business Has Outgrown QuickBooks

QuickBooks is useful for basic accounting and is often preferred by small businesses for its affordability and user-friendliness. However, it is not suited for managing business processes other than financials. QuickBooks isn’t a full Enterprise Resource Planning ERP solution like Acumatica. If you’re struggling to run your business using just QuickBooks, or trying to keep the business running smoothly with a combination of QuickBooks and an ERP suite, you may have outgrown the solution.

Here are six signs you’ve outgrown QuickBooks:

1) Your Company Is Increasingly Reliant on the Cloud

While you can access QuickBooks Enterprise over the Internet, even Intuit will admit the product is not optimized for full cloud functionality. A lack of access to cloud data limits mobility and is thus less convenient than having a cloud-based system. No additional equipment or software are required to use Acumatica as an on-premises or cloud solution.

2) Your ERP Requirements Extend Well Beyond Accounting

Users can’t do much with QuickBooks beyond performing basic accounting tasks. If you’re using it as a check writer and reporting using Excel, it’s time for a more robust ERP solution. It’s also time to switch if your transaction volume is going up and you can benefit from CRM functions that integrate your business processes with those serving your customers.

3) You Require Full Relational Database Export

QuickBooks uses a proprietary database, so it’s hard to import data from payroll, billing, receivables and other outside systems. This can interfere with workflows and transactions, slowing your business down. You can better serve your customers and partners by updating to an ERP system that supports databases such as Microsoft SQL Server, Oracle or SAP HANA.

4) Your Financials Are a Mess

You can tell if your business has outgrown QuickBooks if it takes too long to bill clients or it’s difficult to determine your true cash balance. If meeting the new ASC 606 requirement or consolidating financial reports from multiple companies or divisions is a concern, it’s time to switch to Acumatica. It allows reports to be formatted the way you want. The ERP system also supports multiple currencies and multi-currency transactions.

5) You’re Entering Duplicate Data into Multiple Systems

The larger a business gets, the more data it needs to handle. If you’re spending time entering data into QuickBooks and then rekeying it into other systems, you’ve outgrown QuickBooks. Acumatica updates data in all systems when changes are made, so any user can see the latest document version or financial record, wherever they log in from.

6) There Are More Users Than QuickBooks Can Support

QuickBooks Enterprise supports up to 30 users. While this might suit a growing small business, at some point your company will probably need more people connected. Acumatica can be scaled as your company grows; it can even support multiple companies. Your business can therefore continue using a familiar platform without requiring a complete reimplementation (which can be costly and time consuming).

Next Steps After Your Business Has Outgrown QuickBooks

If you need a true cloud, full-function ERP platform that scales as you grow, you’ve outgrown QuickBooks and should consider Acumatica. The cloud ERP system offers flexible subscription and perpetual licensing options. Contact us to learn more about what this full-featured business management solution can do for your business or browse the additional resources below:

Why Growing Companies Need ERP Software

Growing companies need Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software. Put another way, if your business is growing, you may need to upgrade your legacy ERP software. While software alone won’t make your business grow, executing a growth plan without the right software will be a bigger challenge than it needs to be.

What’s New in ERP?

ERP is not new. You could even argue that it’s middle aged. The core of ERP, which was created to help run big factories and logistical operations, came into existence in the early 1970s. ERP’s origins lead some to consider the software to be a “heavy iron” technology, suited to global giants and industrial processes. There is still some truth to this, but we are now into a new generation of agile, powerful cloud-based ERP solutions.

Cloud ERP, as exemplified by Acumatica, makes it possible to deploy sophisticated business management solutions without installing software or buying any hardware. It’s available over the Web, via a browser. Acumatica is an extensible system. It can do basic ERP workloads like accounting and financial management, orders and invoicing and so forth. However, from there, you can add a significant portfolio of modules. These include software for warehouse management, field service, Customer Resource Management (CRM), HR, industry-specific applications and on and on.

Grow Revenue with ERP

Used the right way, ERP can facilitate revenue growth. This happens when you take advantage of sales management tools and functionality like quote-to-order and product configuration. With these capabilities, you can engage more closely with customers, responding to their needs quickly and closing more deals. The order fulfillment and subsequent customer support features in cloud ERP keep the customer relationship on a solid footing—leading to more repeat business and client references. This is possible without ERP, but it will be a lot more work.

Save and Invest for Growth

Modern cloud ERP drives savings across the business, including Operating Expense (OpEx) and Capital Expense (CapEx). You can use the proceeds of these savings to invest in strategies that promote growth, e.g. marketing campaigns, new hires and so forth. In terms of OpEx, cloud ERP enables people to work more productively, using automated workflows to speed up business processes. The connected nature of the extended Acumatica system reduces manual process steps and re-keying of data into the solution.

The ERP toolset provides for improved scheduling of production operations and field service. With data analytics and visual dashboards, the ERP solution can help managers anticipate problems and react before they become expensive to solve. Advanced inventory management features give you the ability to conserve cash and cut down on costly mistakes like stocking merchandise for so long that it expires.

Protect Your Business, So It Can Grow

The last few years have demonstrated conclusively that a cyberattack is a costly distraction that then results in a huge remediation expense. A serious data breach, for instance, will probably put a damper on your growth plans for a good six months or more. ERP software does not guarantee security, however, modern cloud ERP solutions offer a number of security advantages compared to legacy systems. For instance, the system runs in a highly secure data center. The cloud architecture also makes possible a level of redundancy that protects you from outages resulting from attacks.

2020 promises to be a year of growth. ERP can be part of your success story. If you want to learn more about how cloud ERP can help your business grow in the coming year, let’s talk.

Additional ERP Resources

7 Important Qualities of Cloud ERP

Position Your Business for Growth in 2020 With Cloud ERP

7 Benefits of CRM Software (That’s Integrated with ERP)