A toast! (2020 wrap-up)

Our end of year wrap-up.

Well, friends, family, compatriots… it’s been quite a year.

It is a year that will be remembered for a long time… which sounds a bit trite in my ears as I write it; however – I’m compelled to join the chorus; what a year it has been!

ORG has continued to thrive, even through some big changes we experienced. In a large part, we have you to thank. Sometimes just an empathetic ear to hear our own challenges. Sometimes us celebrating with you the success of a new systems launch or upgrade; you’re own successes.

Each time celebrated helped us to keep moving forward.

Our team at ORG has continually emphasized the importance of listening for successfully supporting our clients’ projects and growth. We’ll continue to do so in the coming years, regardless of the challenges. And we’ll join you in celebrating your successes, and humbly remain honored to be a part of your business growth in whatever manner we can be – even an empathetic ear.

And we will celebrate conversations we randomly happen upon that let us know, we are doing alright (like this one!):
“I met Julia while working at my grandpa business, they used Syspro software in the company and Julia was our consultant that helped save the day and taught me so much! I owe a great deal to her. I wouldn’t have gone the direction I did with my work life had it not been for her.” ~ J. Waldron

It is a wonderful life!

ERP: What is the Value to Your Manufacturing Business?

The definition of ERP

Before we define ERP, let us start with the acronym which stands for Enterprise Resource Planning.  We can define ERP as enterprise software that helps organizations manage their day to day business requirements. At a fundamental level, ERP brings together customer management, human resources, business intelligence, financial management, inventory, and supply chain capabilities into one system.

An ERP system can drive significant performance improvements in manufacturing, distribution, and financial management as well as significantly reducing risk. ERP helps to drive business behavior by empowering users with business-critical insights for quicker analysis, decision making and helps businesses integrate their processes across all business functions.

An ERP system eliminates the problem of duplicated data by providing a single source of the truth as it stores all data in an available database, allowing all departments to work with the same information.

History of ERP

The ERP software industry has been in existence for over thirty years. Its reason for being is that companies had been struggling for a long time to manage their complex business processes, and they would often need to hire different specialists to manage these processes across each department.

The term ERP came into existence in 1990 and was introduced by Gartner. Before that, some of the technology within ERP was developed as far back as the 1960s, but back then, it only applied to inventory management and operations management for manufacturing. Eventually, engineers rolled out computer programs that monitored inventory, reconciled balances, and produced status reports.

By 1970, it had been developed and improved, incorporating Materials Requirement Planning (MRP) for production scheduling processes. Between 1980 and 1990, modern ERP software was being adopted by other industries, as the functionality had extended well beyond its roots in inventory management and other operational controls for the manufacturing sector.

Today ERP software, or enterprise software as some prefer to call it, is implemented across a multitude of diverse industries and it manages the complex processes of millions of organizations of all sizes, all over the world, including manufacturing, healthcare, non-profit groups, construction, and hospitality. Organizations that need to manage their staff, customers, and inventory can all realize the benefits of ERP.

Why you need ERP and the value to your business

Now that you understand what ERP software is and the origin of the ERP industry, it is important to know why an organization would need to use an ERP platform like SYSPRO’s. The short answer is that ERP systems are used by organizations that are looking to manage their business functions within a centralized and integrated system.

If growth is a big part of your business game plan, you need to think about the strategies that will help you to manage your workflows. Before getting into an ERP implementation, you should understand the business value of ERP. Some of the main benefits ERP software can bring to a business include improved business insights, reduced risk, lower operational costs, improved efficiency, smarter working, better collaboration, improved financial reporting and compliance, automated core business processes, and enhanced customer service.

For those who have never used ERP before, they need to understand why it is important to their business. But as globalization and the impact of the global pandemic, it is essential to find ways for your business to gain a competitive edge with an industry-built ERP solution designed to fit your business now and into the future. The benefits of ERP will far outweigh the initial cost, time, and effort involved in implementation.

By Jakes Mantle (SYSPRO author)

ERP Solutions According to the Outcomes You Seek

5 key strategies manufacturers should adopt to ensure the future agility and resilience of their supply chains.

There is no word for the exact opposite of fragile. So, let us call it antifragile. Antifragility goes beyond resilience or robustness – the resilient resists shock and stays the same; the antifragile gets better.
The Black Swan / Nassim Taleb

Global pandemic have severely impacted supply chains around the world. As a result, the ability to identify and plan for future scenarios has become a strategic imperative to mitigate risk and ensure business continuity.

SYSPRO recently released a white paper; 5 Supply Chain Strategies for Agile Procurement.

5 Supply Chain Strategies… provides a number of strategies to help you and your organization to be more prepared to manage supply chain disruption by:

  • Anticipating and planning for uncertainty
  • Ensuring end-to-end supply chain visibility
  • Embracing the limitless possibilities of digitalization
  • Building a robust procurement model
  • Diversifying your supplier base

SYSPRO ERP has the built-in digitalization capabilities to create a truly agile supply chain with end-to-end visibility and collaboration across the entire ecosystem. This robust single-source solution created specifically for manufacturing and distribution will enable you to optimize your organization’s supply chain now, and well into the future.

Not only do we at Operations Resource Group know SYSPRO inside and out, we also know how to integrate with extensions and bridges so you are getting the support for your unique operation.

Contact ORG today and find out how we can support your growth and business systems.

Back to Business Challenges: Post COVID-19

“We all know that the world is going through a major change that will lead to us running our lives differently than we did BC (Before COVID). What some businesses are beginning to realize though is that their workforce will need to learn new skills AC/DC (After COVID/During COVID).” ~ Tiffany Gierke | SYSPRO

This week shows some real movement towards coming out of quarantine in the United States. For a lot of 2019, we saw a lot of articles and talk regarding automation, robotics, and AI in business operations – especially in warehouse management systems. Robotics, AI and AR has taken a large leap in implementation. Production and warehousing was struggling to their labor force before our epidemic situation. The pandemic actions for businesses this first and second quarter of 2020 only increased the dire need for human labor.

With pressures to keep the supply chain running for the health of the global economy, businesses are turning to automation with heightened urgency.

However, people are going to return to work; and it is not business as usual. Helping people learn the new skills of today’s operations is not just important for the returning workforce. Tiffany Gierke of SYSPRO points out that it is equally important for successful businesses. Valuable staff who could easily be re-skilled with operations will be lost if management does not put energy into their education and training.

Training and support is one the key aspects of Operations Resource Group’s methodology.

Gierke’s article is a succinct read supporting the importance of education and training for a returning workforce. And, as stated at the beginning of this post – hiring labor is a major challenge operations and HR currently face. The promise of increasing one’s skill-set, along with strict safety and health standards, is going to be important to those returning to work.

(read complete article)

 

SPECIAL NOTICE

As I was wrapping up this article, I was discussing this topic with a colleague. He mentioned the TESLA “Return to work playbook” as one of the best resources he’s seen as a guide for businesses post-COVID. It is; you can download it here.

Increase: the good and the bad

…it goes without saying right now. There is a definite increase in people’s vigilance. Survival is key.

So today we have two articles to share with you; both about increase. As promised, the good, the bad, and the ugly.

The Good

What does an international company do when they find that “there (are) gaps in how content (is) being stored and shared across the company”? The company in this article, Panova, moved to an ERP system that allowed them to utilize systems and platforms already in place.

Now employees easily access data that used to be in divergent locations. “Managers noted impressive gains in productivity, improved user experience for employees, enhanced file access and a reduced paper trail for the company as a whole.”

The immediate result from system integration? Panova accrued an increase of 400% in productivity gains.

We saw improved efficiency, more opportunities for future process improvements and, most importantly, a significant increase in productivity among our employees and their workflows. ~ Ehren Dimitry, president and CEO of Panova.

(read complete article here)

And now The Bad

Yes, it is on everyone’s mind…the coronavirus pandemic has industry scrambling.

In an article today from Logistics Management, we quickly learn how challenged supply is as consumers rapidly stock up on goods. Empty shelves in major supply chain stores is normal. And the same is found in the local corner store.

And as author Rosemary Coates warns, “This is just the beginning.”

Small and medium size companies rely on China for manufacturing. They didn’t, and still don’t, have the resources to research and find other sources for manufacturing and supply.

Finding new suppliers, qualifying them, and scheduling production is no easy task.

Being resourceful is key to success. As Tony Robbins is quoted as saying, “It’s not the lack of resources, it’s your lack of resourcefulness that stops you.”

Coates warns that not factories in China are running about 25% normal—and delivery costs are increasing as the shipping industry continues to get hit.

(read complete article here)

So many systems

I just learned today that there are visitor management systems… a VMS? yep! Upon first look, it seemed like an automated system for the convention industry. The manufacturing sector is one of the key industries served. According to the Traction Guest site, “Traction Guest’s visitor management system is built to solve security and compliance challenges for manufacturing facilities.”

Security Systems

A primary focus of a VMS is security; both for visitors to a facility and for the host. Knowing where visitors are in emergencies, knowing the visitor is vetted to protect proprietary information, and compliance with regulations and laws—all handled with a VMS.

Visitors are just one concern for manufacturing, though. Lot traceability could be a large security risk if the ability to quickly recall a product isn’t readily available.

Deliver it today

We’ve stated several times via our posts that customers’ expectations for receiving a service or product has gotten tighter and tighter. Businesses are pushing hard to match “same day delivery” expectations set by competitors. With that kind of pressure, the ability to quickly track inventory is of upmost importance. How are companies dealing the the storage challenge in order to meet such expectations?

Can one system handle it all?

The thought of multiple automated systems is daunting. Multiple systems more often than not create problems instead of solving them. Established businesses often customize their systems instead of actually upgrading, or implementing a new automated system that takes advantage of cutting edge technology.

Again, security is a concern as automated systems grow as “a broadened attack surface could be an unintended outcome” of customized solutions.

Our Experience

Operations Resource Group (ORG) has been working with automated business systems for almost a quarter of a century. Next year we’ll be celebrating twenty-five years in the industry. Our solutions monitor, track, trace and communicate business and manufacturing activities and data throughout all your departments. And we know how to do it all with a singular system when appropriate. We also know how to implement customizations and brand new systems with your company’s security in mind.

Let ORG’s experience be your ally. Give us the task of assessing all the possibilities. We’ll work with you and guide the the solution that improve and that support your business processes.

Customization personalizes your ERP

Customization today is more than modifying application logic. There should be a level of personalization and industry/region specific functionality that can be added or removed as needed.

Your ERP Experience, Your Way

An ERP system is an integral part of operations. However, no two businesses are alike. When it comes to business systems one-size does not fit-all. In many instances, it’s the operational differences within an organization that determines their distinct competitive advantage. An ERP software that fails to take the needs of end users into account is unlikely to be rapidly adopted and could lead to frustrations within your organization.

It’s About to Get Personal

The pursuit of the ultimate user experience.
User experience is crucial to rapid uptake, but UX alone is not enough – your chosen ERP software solution must engage your employees. That means empowering them to work whenever and wherever they want and enabling them to personalize the appearance and functionality of their ERP software interface.

To avoid confusing user experience and engagement it is important to note that engagement marks the intersection between commanding attention and taking action. It represents the deliberate choices your employees make when interacting with devices and software. It’s how they extract optimum value from the tools you give them. Without engagement, there can be no meaningful user experience.

Anvizent customization of SYSPRO data

The Anvizent solution for SYSPRO integrates SYSPRO ERP data, and other enterprise data into one platform, providing a comprehensive and unified view of the business. Get up-to-the-minute visibility into performance using 100+ pre-built dashboards across Marketing, Sales Orders, Finance, Banking, Projects, Manufacturing, Inventory, Purchases, and other key functions. Keep track all your operations, spot hidden trends and patterns, uncover issues and take immediate action to keep performance on the track.

Anvizent automated and simplified the entire data management and analytics process so you can rapidly explore data, uncover insights, and make smart, data-driven decisions the way you want to. It’s your personal ERP system.

Customization unlocks vast opportunities, facilitating the rapid adoption and acceptance of the technologies that are driving change. Your department teams will feel empowered to be more creative and innovative.

Anvizent

Accelerate Insights From Your SYSPRO ERP

Since our founding, Operations Resource Group has focused on bringing added value to our customers. With tax season upon us, the preparation of financial information and reports is critical. While many enterprise software products are strong in the areas of either accounting, manufacturing or distribution, SYSPRO excels at all three. This allows for accurate, deep data dives which accelerate insights for your CFO. Other members of the accounting department also can access the data. Reports become easier to manage and export… If…

You Can Understand the Data

Reporting features in SYSPRO are extensive, including the ability to output reports and documents in many different formats or standards, such as XML. Full audit trails are provided for all master data changes, as well as for all financial transaction activity in the system at sub-ledger and general ledger levels. Transaction history reporting is available throughout the system, along with online archiving of data and reports.

ORG has long championed the deep data dive that SYSPRO is capable of. However, a small to mid-sized business might find all this data overwhelming. Overwhelming data usually ends up being useless. We at ORG specialize in helping companies of your size in implementing and adapting automated business systems—like SYSPRO. We are always on the lookout for ways to adapt the big data reports from SYSPRO. We’ve recently started working with Anvizent with great success the past year.

Accelerate Insights and Understanding

Anvizent creates dashboards that report complex data in a simple, easy to read manner. Anvizent brings real-time, self-service analytics/insights to everyone’s fingertips, enabling them to continually improve decisions and performance.

The video below gives a quick overview of Anvizent’s Finance dashboards. Incorporating Anvizent with your SYSPRO ERP will give you quick access to data, allowing you to understand the factors driving revenue, cost, and profitability across products, business units, and locations.

Contact us and ask how we can assist your departments in accelerating data capabilities within your business systems.

“Right Now” does create conversions

Vince Atkin, Overstock’s vice president of supply chain, stated that a delivery message of 2-day shipping has a 30% higher conversion rate than a 3-day or more delivery message.

Overstock.com knew from the previous year’s data, they would need to improve their delivery times to customers significantly to close sales and compete with other online ordering services during the holiday season. To do so, they would need products warehoused closer to the customer.

This only made sense though for the highly impacted holiday season. “It would be foolish to build a network that could handle Cyber 5 volume and let it sit there for the other 51 weeks of the year,” Atkin says about shipping carriers handling increased volume.

So Overstock.com staged its promotional products at its third-party logistic warehouses so it could ship products to customers faster.

This is from a very brief article from Digital Commerce 360.

It’s a very quick read. It also highlights the importance of decipherable data for Overstock.com to arrive at the important insights regarding customers’ sale conversions and customer retention.

Overstock also uses a machine-learning model to forecast fulfillment that factors in historic carrier performance. It builds rules into its reporting to flag issues. For example, if an order hasn’t moved in a couple days, there is likely a problem. Overstock will reach out to its carrier if an order hasn’t moved within 48 hours to proactively deal with any issues, instead of waiting for the carrier or a customer to flag an issue.

(read entire article – 1 minute)

 

ERP data analytics

ERP conversion data

Data Mining: The Hidden Treasures of Your ERP

The boss is unhappy with the company’s ERP. After a costly implementation, delivery delays, and bugs being worked out – she still isn’t getting the answers from the data she was hoping for. The promised treasure from data mining remains elusive!

Why?

Upper management and company leaders have a primary responsibility; get answers and insights beyond the obvious. This is what keeps a company a world-class leader. And industry leaders also lead in profit – which is the bottom line. The timeliness of the answers to these hidden questions is what supports improvements on, “speed to market”, production management, P/L, waste management, customer retention – and more – company growth. Yes, default data analysis is useful; it’s also the default. It isn’t leadership data.

Remember, world-class leaders are thinking beyond the obvious.

Too much data?

ERP Systems are excellent for funneling data from a multitude of disparate sources. The information to answer a company’s key questions is collected and stored – that’s a given. Accessing it in a manageable manner is the challenge.

The value of data usually remains in a holding pattern. The technical knowledge to query data from a database, or databases, is yet immensely complex and challenging (SQL statements, Db management, programming languages). College degrees are created for such expertise. And we live in a time when big data is the norm. So data isn’t the problem; accessing it in a legible manner is.

Whose responsibility is it to go into the mine?

Most IT departments are already topped out with major responsibilities. Adding data management and reporting most likely will either get your IT department giving their notice, or have the responsibility back-burnered as they continue to concentrate on site/information security, hardware maintenance, and the day-to-day support for staff’s use of your company’s technology.  (How do check email on my phone again?) I’m sure you CIO has some others, more important, that I’m unaware of.

So… Consistent, timely reports are still not getting to the company leaders.

DIY: Data Instantly Yours

Ok, that’s a groaner – however, it happens to be true.

Operations Resource Group partnered with SYSPRO, a world leader in creating an ERP software solution for manufacturing and distribution, because of their capability to integrate complex business systems into a single platform. This integration of multiple departments (customer orders, production, inventory control, etc.) creates large data sets with the information your looking for to answer those subtle, hidden questions you’ve been asking.

ORG recently partnered with Anvizent, a soup to nuts Analytics Solution for robust ERP Systems. In a short time, we and our clients have experienced phenomenal success. Anvizent reporting easily allows a person to track operations, spot hidden trends and patterns, uncover issues and take immediate action to keep performance world-class. By integrating Anvizent with SYSPRO, company leaders get the power of deep data mining while also receiving the insights from your SYSPRO ERP data in simple, manageable dashboards and reports. The people who want the answers and information are getting it when they want it – because they get it themselves.

Those hidden treasures are now readily available.

Data mining is for everyone

Because Anvizent is customizable, one can create user accesses for all departments appropriately. Now everyone from Executive to HR, Warehouse to Sales – everyone is safely, and most importantly, accurately reading and analyzing the reports that support their daily work.

Give us a call. We’ll happily answer your questions and concerns as we continue to support you and your business growth. We strongly believe that our partnerships with SYSPRO and Anvizent support our excellence in customer service.