What are your goals and priorities for growing your distribution business this year? And, can your current order management processes, technology and infrastructure support that growth?
Many companies in manufacturing and distribution plan on growing their business by introducing new products and expanding their ecommerce capabilities in the coming year. Those initiatives will increase the volume of orders making automation and streamlining of order processing a critical priority.
In fact, this white paper with survey results on Order Management Strategies for Efficiency and Growth, from cloud based ERP provider NetSuite, indicates that most companies rely on home grown integrations or manual, paper based processes. Improved Order Management is the #1 customer focused initiative from their respondents. Satisfying and retaining customers requires high inventory validity and fast, accurate delivery of product orders.
The key area’s to focus on for optimizing order management are:
Are all of the platforms where your orders are entered (think front end ERP screens & Ecommerce sites) integrated with your order processing, picking and shipment systems? If not, and paper based manual data entry is required, the chance for error is high.
More than 50% of the businesses surveyed in the paper referenced above indicated that their operational fulfillment systems were “all paper with limited automation”.
54% of those surveyed said their Core IT order management systems were fragmented or different applications with custom integrations.
Have you introduced mobile devices into your order management and warehouse processes? Barcode scanning equipment can significantly speed inventory counts and order picking. These mobile devices allow you to handle higher order volumes with fewer personnel and they reduce fulfillment errors.
Mobile devices in the warehouse, with integrated wireless data transfer to your order management system, will eliminate manual paper and data entry processes.
Finally, converting to cloud based systems may offer many distribution companies the quickest and least expensive path to end to end systemintegration. This survey’s results show that organizations with cloud based ERP’s have a higher fulfillment rate for customer orders.
Nearly 80% of companies with fulfillment rates below 95% (meaning on time fulfillment with no partial or backorders) run on premises ERP systems. With a cloud based ERP system businesses spend less time managing IT and focus their efforts on streamlining and automating processes.
Obviously, now is the time to get ahead of the more than 50% of your competitors with their lack of integration and automation. Socius has a partnered with NetSuite, and is able to offer their integrated and cloud based ERP, CRM and Ecommerce capabilities. Please give us a call at 800 .589.6614 when your Order Management processes need updated or moved to the cloud.