4 Ways a Mobile ERP Strategy Improves Profitability
Reducing costs and meeting growth expectations is the reason 81% of companies implement a mobile ERP strategy.1 Going mobile makes sense for business productivity. The workforce today is already connected across multiple devices, from iPhones and Android devices to tablets, PCs and Mac computers, all used throughout the day however it fits their needs. Increasingly, employees expect to have access to the software they use to perform their jobs from wherever and whenever they need it. A mobile ERP strategy gives employees the flexibility they need to keep pace with business while traveling, working from home, out on the shop floor, in a meeting, or otherwise away from their workstations. Incorporating cloud ERP to your mobile strategy will increase your competitiveness in today’s fast-moving global marketplace.
If a mobile ERP strategy is in your future, consider the following benefits that cloud ERP provides:
Mobile ERP Improves Sales While Traveling
Whether at a trade show, visiting a client or otherwise out on the road, your sales reps need to be armed with current customer, product and inventory data to do their jobs well. Real-time data accessed remotely from a cloud ERP allows sales reps to respond more accurately to client questions related to inventory levels and inbound product, and to offer realistic product delivery estimates. As a result, your company is better equipped to keep its promises to customers, which in turn increases customer satisfaction and repeat business.
Mobile ERP Allows Faster Fulfillment
Fulfillment performance greatly improves with a mobile ERP strategy. Sales doesn’t need to wait to return to the office to submit an order. Your sales reps can enter the order directly into the cloud ERP from wherever they are, and the order is made available immediately to your employees in the warehouse. Using tablets or other handheld devices will speed the process even further, along with eliminating the need to periodically print reports from which to fulfill orders. Additionally, web store orders can flow directly to the ERP and into tablets held by employees in the warehouse. By reducing your order fulfillment time, there is also less opportunity for customers to cancel or change their orders.
Mobile ERP Provides Ease of Use – Anywhere, Anytime
Legacy ERP and on-premise solutions were not designed with mobility in mind. Most companies that try to give their employees mobile access to these solutions find themselves struggling to use Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) or Citrix connections. Additionally, providing and maintaining those connections means sinking both money and IT staff time into installing software and troubleshooting broken, slow and problematic connections. With cloud ERP, employees simply log in from their web browsers without any special communication protocols. This increases their ability to work remotely, stay productive and to access data from any device where it’s needed.
Improved access also impacts the quality and timeliness of decisions, especially those made while employees are outside the office. Companies that implement a cloud SaaS (Software as a Service) ERP have seen their time-to-decision reduced by 46%.2 Giving managers real-time remote access to their KPIs allows them to monitor department processes and make better decisions about issues while away.
Mobile ERP Reduces IT Spend
Moving to cloud ERP eliminates the expense of maintaining your own IT infrastructure, including the costs associated with purchasing and installing servers, and special hardware and software for your ERP. You can access your ERP from your web browser using computers and mobile devices you already have. Additionally, a cloud SaaS solution frees your IT staff from the hassles of performing upgrades, as these happen seamlessly, and from worrying about security and backups since these are managed for you in the cloud.
Clearly, there is an opportunity cost to the continued investment in outdated ERP. Moving to the cloud and adopting a mobile business strategy gives companies the advantage needed to keep pace with business. Companies can then reinvest their IT funds strategically to meet their higher-value business goals.
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1Aberdeen Group. Mobile ERP in the SME: Growth through Efficiency and Visibility.
2Aberdeen Group. SaaS ERP in Wholesale and Distribution: Enabling Communication Across a Wide Network.