It’s hard to remain competitive in the distribution space. Whether you’re working to fend off the rise of Amazon’s recent B2B initiative or stand up to traditional competitors, your customers expect you to work faster, more accurately, and more effectively than ever to deliver their needs.
From Survivability to “Thriveability”
For many businesses, Spring 2020 was a nightmare, but as things slowly get back to normal, you’re coming close to a pivot—moving from survivability and stop loss to ‘thriveability’ and growth. Understandably, you’re not out of the woods—the lockdowns have changed customer expectations, reinforced Amazon’s brand, and likely resulted in shorter fuses for your customers.
That said, you might have big pants to fill, and meeting your customers’ needs may require you to grow into them. In the coming months and years, your ability to adapt to customer needs will likely require you to embrace a smarter system of growth.
Maybe you see an opportunity to acquire a competitor or distributor in a different market who was hit particularly hard in the last few months. Maybe you need to add a few new SKUs to meet the expectations of your customer base. Maybe you could buy up an empty facility to get closer to your customer base.
Growing Needs for Growing Distributors
If you’ve been solvent over the past few months, you may have an opportunity to embrace cheap growth. But before you do, you need to ask yourself whether your people, processes, and systems are ready to handle this.
- Say you’re adding a second, tenth, or fiftieth facility. Do you know how you’re going to route your orders?
- Say you’re trying to embrace an ecommerce initiative, build up a customer portal, or start selling on a third-party marketplace. Do you have the visibility into each warehouse to provide customers with the exact information about each product?
- Say your largest, make-or-break customer wants you to reduce shipping times. Can you route and fulfill orders fast enough to satisfy them?
Not only will this require you to bring on the people to do the job, you will also need to expand the processing power required to manage the data generated from this expansion. What will that take?
Technology Needs to Scale with You
Unfortunately, for those companies who do have the money and motive to pivot, they may end up running into problems in other areas, namely technology. For example, if you’ve been using a legacy system for a while, are you ready to buy ‘perpetual’ licenses and physical servers, train new employees on the limitations and nuances of the software, and run inventory for the additional warehouses or SKUs?
Too often, those with legacy software have more trouble getting their software up at a new location than they do securing property and setting up the warehouse space. If you’re outgrowing your distribution product, you may look to the cloud. Why? For one reason, scalability.
Scalability refers to a solution’s ability to handle tomorrow’s needs—when you need them. Unlike legacy (or fake cloud) products, true cloud scalability doesn’t require you to anticipate your needs, it simply ‘grows with you’, adding or removing capacity as needed.
Acumatica: The True Cloud Product for Tomorrow’s Distributor
From new locations to SKUs, you can’t let outdated technology stand in your way. Luckily, Cloud ERP delivers. Acumatica is a true cloud solution, ready to grow with you, deliver the insights you need, and evolve when you need it to.
Not only does it grow with you, it doesn’t rely on growth-crippling per-user pricing either. Acumatica bills strictly on resources used, allowing you to add new users, suppliers, or customers without hassle. Not only this, but its true cloud architecture helps you do so much more. “Like what?,” you may ask.
If you’re looking to know this, we invite you to download the free whitepaper titled True Cloud vs. Fake Cloud: How Companies Can Tell the Difference in Distribution right now. It’s an invaluable resource for comparing your distribution management software options, including Acumatica Distribution Edition.
Acumatica and CCS: True Cloud Partners for Distribution Firms
If you’re looking for a flexible and powerful solution that doesn’t hinder your initiatives, it’s time to get rolling with Acumatica. Built in the cloud to deliver the adaptable, feature rich, and integrated enterprise resource planning software that streamlines your processes and facilitates your decisions, this solution is ready for the needs of distribution firms.
Get to know more about how this product has helped distributors like you by reading these case studies, reading 7 irresistible qualities of cloud ERP, and contacting leading Acumatica Partner CCS Technology for a consultation.