Whilst good discipline does exist with some paper-based and manual processes, significant benefits can be gained by implementing, or maximising the use of, an integrated Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) System to maximise operational efficiency and to reduce customer service lead time.
Extensive use of paper-based processes and non-integrated applications leads to:
- Duplication of records
- Process delays and inefficiencies
- Lack of information visibility across the company
- Lack of performance measurement and reporting
- Significant dependency on personnel knowledge and memories
- The need for numerous or long management meetings
- Lack of adequate capacity planning of equipment and resources
- Inability to prioritise customer orders in a timely manner as orders increase
- Inefficiencies in production order planning and scheduling
- Lack of ability to adequately track the status of customer orders
- Lack of adequate tracking of costs
- Ineffective stock management
- Delays in delivering customer orders on time
- Reduced return on ERP investment if not maximising its use.
What would the efficient management of information mean to your firm?
The key lesson is to replace ALL manual, paper-based processes with a fully integrated technology solution, or simply maximise use of your current ERP. A fully integrated technology solution (or better use of the one you currently have) can reduce operational costs in enterprises by the equivalent cost of 1-2 positions; plus the additional revenue gained from increased efficiency leads to increased service capacity. We have proved this for many firms. We are not suggesting loss of positions by any means; any ‘time-capacity’ gained within positions is fully replaced with proactive duties including measurement, analysis, planning, strategy development, research, continuous improvement and implementation (wouldn’t that be nice – to work on the business!).
Paper-based Processes = Non-competitive Supply Chain
Remember this: Every time you need to pick up a pen to fill in a form in your company or for any business in your supply chain, you are going back in time. Every time you fill in a form that is not directly integrated with a fully integrated database, you are going back in time. Any company with manual, paper-based processes within your supply chains = a non-competitive supply chain. Who’s letting your supply chains down?
Move forward now, otherwise you will not achieve optimum efficiency gains that will allow you to increase your capacity to serve major supply chains, take on more work and increase revenue through increased capacity. Supplier Development and Customer Development improvement initiatives may also be required to increase the competitiveness of your supply chains.
Enterprises with disciplined manual, paper-based processes should commence researching suitable ERPs, or should seek training on how to better use current systems, to address the majority of information management and reporting requirements, process delay issues etc.
Contact us if you require more information regarding:
- The impact of ineffective and inefficient information management systems
- Why paper-based processes should be replaced by technology solutions
- What is an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) System
- The benefits of effective and efficient information management systems such as an Enterprise Resource Planning System
- How to research and evaluate ERPs including what questions should be asked of the software providers and reference sites
- How to become ERP-ready
- ERP implementation planning
- How to maximise use of your current systems.