5 Building Blocks to Help Small Growers Run Their Businesses More Efficiently

Velosio welcomes the chance to show how your business can improve with Dynamics 365 BC. Learn about the benefits of centralized data today.

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    Fast access to accurate information is the key to running any business more efficiently, particularly for small growers. Their limited resources naturally focus on plant production in the nursery and customer service to drive sales.

    To run back-office functions like sales, production management, purchasing, and inventory, many growers rely on manual processes. Some of these processes work well thanks to powerful spreadsheets. But the functions may be managed by multiple users. Their spreadsheets are isolated, so there’s no integration and no real-time access for other users.

    If the person managing one of these functions happens to leave the business, it can result in a mad scramble to pull together information on customers, vendors, or sales items. And even when function owners share information by emailing spreadsheet files, the data quickly grows old as new sales orders, purchase orders, and inventory replenishment come in.

    There’s also extra work to move spreadsheet data into an accounting system, such as QuickBooks. The accounting team typically has to rekey sales and purchasing information to generate invoices and payments, and to start tracking receivables and payables.

    All this creates a lot of extra work for the entire staff as it spends time finding information to keep the day-to-day business running. This in turn detracts from the amount of time spent on plant production and selling to customers—the ultimate keys to operating profitably.

    The Value of Centralized Data

    centralized data

    A great tool for helping small growers solve these challenges is Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central. Velosio accommodates the specific process workflows of growers by tailoring Business Central, which includes sales, purchasing, inventory, production, accounting, and financials. Business Central also natively connects with all the Office 365 productivity tools your staff is familiar with—including Outlook, Excel, Word, Teams and PowerPoint—as well as Microsoft Power BI to streamline report analysis.

    One of the attributes of Business Central that our grower customers appreciate most is the flexibility to implement only the functions they’re ready for. Some, for example, continue to run plant production in another system, such as Excel spreadsheets. And that’s where the integration comes in handy. We can show you how to format your spreadsheets so that you can quickly copy production and other data into Business Central.

    Then the true value of Business Central kicks in: It becomes your master database of all your information in one place—customers, vendors, items, pricing, and inventory.

    With all your data in one centralized database, it’s easier to keep the information accurate and up-to-date. And with Dynamics 365 Business Central running in the cloud, you can make that data accessible to everyone in the business in real time—anywhere they’re working—the nursery, the back office, home, or while visiting customers and vendors.

    Functionality to Drive Process Efficiencies Across the Business

    For a preview of how Dynamics 365 Business Central can help your grower business run more efficiently, check out our webinar, Small Growers – Solutions to Fit Your Operations. We take you through a screen-shot demo of Business Central in action for a sample grower business.

    In addition to centralizing all your business data within a master database, Business Central gives you four more building blocks for an ERP system that will enable you to drive process efficiencies across your business:

    • Sales – track all your customers along with who is buying what items and at what price. The sales order function lets you see when each customer is expecting your items and automatically applies pricing based on customer price groups. You can also quickly see order status, customer balance, and order history so you can immediately provide answers to customer inquiries.
    • Purchasing – determine what you need to purchase and when based on the current inventory, open purchase orders, and open sales orders. The system updates you in real time as the supply and the demand change. Whether it’s cuttings, liners, seeds, pots, or any other production item, you know when it’s time to order more.
    • Inventory – identify what your team can sell and when items will ship so you can confidently make and keep customer commitments. We tailored this module for the grower industry so you can also look back on time periods to see what you planned to have on hand vs. what you actually ended up with so you can make sure inventory meets customer demand in the future.
    • Financials – run financials in real time as all sales, purchasing, and inventory data automatically flows into the accounting module. This lets you easily compare rolled-up costs vs. revenue to determine your margins for each item, customer, and vendor. You can also streamline invoicing AR and AP to manage your cash flow.

    Since all of your data will be in one centralized database, you can incorporate these functions into your business all at once or one at a time. You can also integrate Business Central with third-party software if there’s a particular add-on tool that works well for your business. Each function can also integrate with Microsoft Power BI to run any type of report you need to analyze KPIs and historical data, or to forecast future sales and inventory availability.

    Start Your Revolution Today

    Whether you start with a base standard system or deploy the full functionality, we welcome the opportunity to show you how Dynamics 365 Business Central can revolutionize your business. To learn more, watch the Small Growers – Solutions to Fit Your Operations webinar or contact us today.