Implement ERP to Improve Customer Service
An enterprise resource planning (ERP) system gives businesses the power to capitalize on useful data around their inventory, demand and sales process. Analyzing this data allows users to make informed decisions in all areas of their business, including ordering, scheduling and marketing. But what many companies don't realize is that when all of their processes are backed by hard facts and running smoothly, their customers gain optimal service. Not enough users are taking advantage of ERP for customer service—here's why it's time to start.
ERP Software and Big Data
Your ERP system has the potential to store massive amounts of information about your business’s supply, inventory and manufacturing processes. If you are not analyzing this "big data" to reap critical insights into your business, you are missing out. It contains key insights into your company, including where it’s been and where it’s going. Your ERP system's extensive data on inventory, product sourcing and purchase history should be leveraged to gain a 360-degree view of customers from initial interest to sale. With sophisticated demand planning tools, you can use historical data to ensure that you’re never out of stock nor overflowing with surplus materials.
When you use your ERP data intentionally, you also ensure that no customer query is left unanswered. A consolidated system provides consumers with more transparent inventory information—whether a product they are looking for is in stock at a particular store, or when they can expect it to be delivered. Big data helps you not only appeal to a target market but also find one. An integrated CRM and ERP system will allow you to recognize the leads you make the most sales from and what channels are getting you the biggest interest. You can also use data analysis to focus your marketing dollars on the most effective channels.
These are only some examples of the many ways you can harness your back-end data to transform your front-facing customer transactions. It’s hard not to impress potential customers when you can answer any questions they have about your business or products; ERP software allows you to do just that. The term "big data" may sound like another ambiguous IT buzzword, but the concepts behind it and the power that it can put in your hands are truly going to transform the landscape of software, technology and business.
Hosting your ERP solution in the cloud can help you reap even more benefits from your data. Cloud computing offers tremendous scalability and flexibility to facilitate a variety of business needs. For example, you can operate your brick-and-mortar and online business through the same software, bringing data and sales insight from every aspect of your company together into one all-powerful enterprise system. This enables your business to drive powerful omnichannel experiences.
Instead of wasting time collecting data from several different sources and risking errors, the cloud also allows you to streamline information and focus your efforts on your true mission. Plus, with information available through the cloud, sales reps can answer customer queries and provide real-time information no matter where they are. They just need to take out their mobile devices to access the data they need to close a deal.
With the cloud it’s easier to sync information across disparate systems, multiple offices and off-site employees—no matter how big your business is. But don't think this solution is only for large-scale enterprises. Off-site hosting means that you only pay for the server and storage space you need, making the cloud the most attractive option for small to midsize businesses. As long as team members have access to the internet, they can harness data to make decisions, close sales and drive revenue.
ERP and CRM Integration
An integration of your ERP and CRM software can take the marriage of big data and enterprise software even further. As CRM systems track all of the information on the sales side of your business, ERP tracks all of the production and manufacturing. Distilling all that data into a single source gives you the most valuable information for analysis and demand prediction, truly driving the ROI on your software purchases. An interconnected enterprise can also mobilize data from CRM and ERP for customer service that is out of this world.
Are you running legacy software, or struggling to consolidate a bunch of different systems and finding that you’re not achieving the full potential of any of them? Epicor ERP could be just the solution you need. With its comprehensive array of modules and data analytics tools, Epicor has the power to track every stage of the supply chain and transform big data into actionable insight. With its recent partnership with Microsoft Azure, Epicor is set to offer its most secure and scalable cloud-hosted solutions yet, making this the prime time to implement your ERP in the cloud.
As an Epicor Platinum Partner, Datix is the optimal consulting firm for executing your ERP implementation. But don't stop at an implementation. With Unity, our pre-built integration solution, we can quickly connect your ERP instance with CRM and other systems to help you provide premium customer service. Contact an expert at Datix today—we can streamline your software solutions and align them to your business processes.