What is SAP Business One Inventory Management?

Your business is unique and demands tools that can help you manage your inventory in an efficient manner. SAP Business One inventory management module offers a wide range of features to help you do just that!

A robust business system should be able to manage your inventory. Managing inventory is a key component of keeping track of your company’s supply chain, which is important for growing your business.

Inventory management systems help you keep track of products and materials, so you can manage your stock effectively. Maintaining stock levels is crucial to ensure that you have the right number of products in stock at any given time. This is to avoid overstocking, which can tie up valuable capital and cause a reduction in profits.

It’s also essential for avoiding the effects of under-stocking, where the demand for your products exceeds your supply, leading to lost revenue and dissatisfied customers.

SAP Business One offers a well-developed inventory management solution. The inventory component supports processes that optimize inventory management for large and start-up businesses.

It streamlines operations for businesses by managing master items and data records, among other things. Inventory management offers many additional functionalities to achieve objectives such as reducing inventory levels, lowering costs, and improving the company’s revenue.

The primary responsibility of inventory management is to manage stock already in storage, making orders and sales. SAP Business One provides inventory management for streamlining procurement processes, tracking receipts, and inventory levels in real-time.

Here are a few ways SAP Business One makes inventory management easy:

Manage Item Master Data

Manages all item data from a single screen. All details about the item can be kept in the system, including specific barcode numbers for each item.

Item Tracking

Product quantities are tracked according to their specific serial numbers, batch numbers, and expiration dates. This enables them to be tracked through their entire life cycle—from production to customer delivery—to ensure that they are always available when needed and in high demand. Having this information enables you to make business decisions based on accurate information rather than assumptions or guesswork.

Manage the financial aspects of inventory management (costs, prices)

When you set up a product master record in SAP B1, you can store all relevant information regarding costs and prices. You can enter information such as standard price and standard cost, which can then be used to create reports that show how much money your products are generating or costing.

With SAP B1’s inventory management module, you can also define specific price lists for different markets and customer groups. For example, you could have one price list for wholesale customers, another for retail customers, another for customers in different countries and so on.

In addition to product base prices, the inventory management module lets you set up discount schedules based on sales volume or other criteria.

Inventory forecasts

The Forecast Wizard helps you generate sales forecasts by product, region or customer segment. You can set up different combinations of parameters to suit your business needs. The wizard lets you see how forecasted sales change over time depending on the parameters you select, so you can adjust them if necessary. This gives you greater control over your inventory planning and helps reduce write-offs due to expired products.

Ordering tools

The Order Wizard helps you produce purchase orders based on forecasted demand, current inventory levels and supplier lead times. The tool will flag any items that are below their reorder point, as well as quantities that need to be ordered from each supplier, giving you an accurate overview of your suppliers and inventory levels at a glance. You can also use the Purchase Order Report to view all open purchase orders for a given supplier in one place.

Stock transfers between warehouses, locations and sites

The Stock Transfer Wizard lets you generate stock transfer orders based on which items are running low in which locations or warehouses. With this tool, you can move stock where it’s needed most without wasting time trying to manually identify reordering needs site-by-site.

Basic inventory information

Inventory management lets you create and update data records for all the items in your stock, including the minimum and maximum quantities needed to trigger a replenishment order. It also lets you keep track of units of measure and unit conversions (e.g., 12 pieces per box). You can choose what information to enter manually or upload it from a spreadsheet using a utility called Data Transfer Workbench. To help you manage your warehouse, the Inventory Count module lets you perform physical stock counts as well as stock takes at specific locations.

Other benefits include:

Multiple warehouses and locations – allowing you to manage your stock at different locations by creating a separate warehouse for each location

Multiple units of measurement – allowing you to keep track of your stock in different units of measurement (kgs, litres, meters etc.) per item

Full traceability – allowing you to trace an item’s history at every stage of production (purchase order, goods receipt, goods issue etc.)

Serial number tracking – allowing you to monitor individual serial numbers for each item in your inventory

Batch number tracking – allowing you to track the batch numbers assigned to each item in your inventory

Your business needs efficiency, and it needs a system that can automate and streamline its inventory and production processes. SAP Business One offers you both—and more.

As a user of SAP Business One, you can gain greater visibility into key functions like inventory, which allows you to plan ahead and avoid both shortages and surplus inventory through better planning.

This means that your business will be able to reduce costs while speeding up its delivery times, so you can meet customer demand and expectations. With a system that enables real-time updates of inventory and warehouse data, you will always have the most accurate information available to inform your decisions..

Overall, the SAP Business One inventory management functionality is extensive and will serve you well. SAP Business One includes all the tools you need to grow your business from idea to reality. Best of all, everything integrates seamlessly so that you can easily manage your inventory in real time.

To learn more about the inventory and warehouse management functionality of SAP Business One, request a demonstration with one of our experts or contact us for more information.

 

How the Distribution Industry is Digitizing for Tomorrows Economy

Digital tools and solutions are revolutionizing industries. Manufacturing and distribution are no exception. The industry is rapidly digitizing, and the companies that keep up will be able to save money, improve productivity and efficiency, and gain a competitive edge. These companies will also be better prepared for the future of business.

Businesses are desperately trying to keep up with the rapid pace of change that is sweeping their industry. In a world where new technologies such as cloud computing, and big data are changing the way we do business, it is essential that companies find ways to adapt and evolve to ensure they remain profitable.

The distribution industry is one area that has undergone a complete transformation in recent years as many businesses have now embraced cloud computing and ERP software. The benefits of this technology have revolutionized not only how businesses operate, but also how they can do business with their customers.

Many distribution companies have implemented ERP systems into their business to help them streamline operations and improve productivity. For example, the ability to store customer data and automate processes such as invoicing has enabled these companies to become more efficient in their day-to-day operations.

However, there are still some challenges facing distribution companies that have not yet implemented EPR software into their business. One of these challenges includes keeping up with technological advancements in other industries such as retail or healthcare.

These industries have a fast-paced environment where technology constantly changes and there are always new innovations being developed which could benefit distribution firms by improving efficiency or increasing profits.

One of the main ways that companies in the distribution industry are transforming themselves into digital enterprises is by adopting Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software solutions.

What is ERP software?

 

ERP software has been around since the early 1970s, but it wasn’t until recently that companies started to realize how much they could gain by using it. Before then, they were using MRP: Material Requirements Planning. MRP was what they used to handle their inventory, scheduling, and purchasing before ERP came along and changed everything.

These days there’s no excuse for not having an ERP system in place if you want to stay competitive in this industry — and many others besides!

The benefits of enterprise resource planning systems are undeniable: They can save you money on your logistics costs; improve productivity and efficiency throughout every department within your company; give customers better.

As the world is constantly changing, new technologies are becoming more popular and widely used. Automation has become more common in many industries and this allows for a quicker and more efficient way of working. The distribution industry is not exempt from the integration of new technologies and digital tools.
There are many benefits to using a digital tool such as ERP software, these include:

Distribution industry ERP allows you automate many processes that would otherwise be done manually:

 

Automating these processes also makes them more accurate, which means they can reduce errors and waste while increasing productivity by streamlining production processes al whilst saving you time and money.

Distribution industry ERP allows you to manage your inventory more efficiently:

 

You can track what you have in stock at any given time with an ERP system, as well as how much inventory needs to be ordered or shipped out based on customer demand. This enables companies to avoid overstocking their warehouses with products that aren’t selling well while making sure popular items stay available at all times; it also maximizes warehouse space usage so they don’t run out of room for new products coming into the facility each month or year (depending on how often deliveries occur).

Distribution industry ERP allows you to Improve productivity and efficiency:

 

ERP will allow you to improve the process of getting goods to your customers by making it quicker and easier. There is also no room for human error when most of your processes are automated.

Distribution industry ERP allows you to provide a better customer service:

 

By using an ERP system, you will be able to make your customers journey easier and simpler by giving them access to information that they need. This will help with customer retention and brand loyalty as they will be able to access information whenever they want, rather than having to wait for someone from the company to get back to them.

And finally, ERP enables higher profits & lower costs:

 

When your processes are automated, this means that there is less work for employees to do manually so they can focus on other tasks which will increase their productivity.

Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software solutions may be the difference between your company surviving or falling behind in the digital economy.

These integrated solutions can help you manage all of your business processes using one system. They can also allow you to access data in real-time, giving you an accurate picture of what’s happening in your company at any given moment.

Many ERPs also provide planning tools to help you make decisions that are well-informed and strategic, rather than being reactive or in the dark.

To conclude, it is apparent that the future of the distribution industry is digital and distribution companies need to adapt with an ERP solution that will not only help them to change but also be able to handle their complexity.

Ultimately, the technology that helps fuel success in distribution is similar to what will help power success in many other industries. ERP software is not just becoming a standard; it is standard.

As the world becomes increasingly globalized, companies are looking for ways to simplify their systems and make all operations more efficient. ERP software, like SAP Business One, is a great way to do that.

To discuss your options for digitising your business through ERP, contact us for a friendly, informal chat.

Supply Chain Management: Building the Future with ERP

The digitization of supply chain management is inevitable, with more and more manufacturers and distributors looking to take advantage of the revolutionary advantages ERP systems offer.

Supply chain management is the process of overseeing the flow of goods from raw materials to finished products. It’s an incredibly complex system that includes all of the steps it takes to get a product from the factory floor to the customer’s doorstep.

Today’s supply chain managers are tasked with optimizing every step in this process while maintaining high levels of quality control, which can be challenging when there are so many variables involved.

The supply chain is traditionally managed by a variety of software tools and spreadsheets, which requires manual data entry, often with some degree of human error and lots of room for improvement. With the right ERP system, you can streamline your entire supply chain and gain efficiencies along the way.

Modern ERP systems are more integrated, more flexible and better able to communicate with other systems. As a result, they can handle complex supply chain management issues, from forecasting and demand planning to safety stock optimization.

ERP systems are also being used to manage procurement and inventory. They can establish new business rules around when orders are placed, using sophisticated algorithms and predictive analytics to determine the most efficient way to maintain inventory levels.

The supply chain is one of the most important pieces of the puzzle when you’re considering your business strategy. If you can’t deliver on time or make your customers wait, you’ll lose their trust and potentially their business as well.

A modern ERP system will give you the data-driven tools to stay ahead of your competition. Here’s how:

An ERP system can help you predict demand and optimize production

An ERP system is a valuable tool for predicting demand, optimizing production, and reducing inventory costs across the board. Modern machine learning algorithms let you forecast demand, automate material planning and replenishment, and set up optimized cost-based production plans with real-time data that’s synchronized across all systems within your company.

When you have a handle on what’s happening with your inventory, it becomes easier to predict demand and plan for future orders.

Increased productivity with cloud based sap business one

An ERP system can significantly improve efficiency and inventory management

If your inventory isn’t organized, every step in the process becomes more difficult and time-consuming — not just for employees, but for your customers as well. The longer they have to wait, the less likely they are to stick around!

When everything is in one system, it’s easier for everyone involved in the process to manage inventory, manage logistics, plan production schedules, and track orders and payments. This real-time visibility helps prevent bottlenecks that slow down operations or lead to underperformance from any part of the company.

An ERP system streamlines your business processes by consolidating data from multiple departments into a single platform that saves time and minimizes human error.

You can also use an ERP system to manage inventory levels in real time, minimizing labour costs while maintaining an accurate view of your inventory levels at any given time across multiple locations or warehouses.

Increased efficiency with cloud based sap business one

A modern ERP system can streamline your regulatory compliance process

Regulatory compliance is a major concern for most companies. And it should be. One misstep can lead to enormous fines and even cause your company to lose its license to trade.

The typical supply chain management process is complicated, involving a number of companies, each with their own set of rules and regulations. Adding to that complication, the regulatory landscape is changing constantly, often with little warning.

To add to this complexity and challenge, achieving compliance is critically important — it could be the difference between being able to ship products and losing thousands of pounds in potential revenue.

A modern ERP system can streamline your regulatory compliance process. As rules and regulations change, you need an ERP system that can adapt quickly, ensuring that your business remains compliant at all times. This is one area where a traditional ERP system falls short — it lacks the flexibility needed in a constantly changing regulatory environment.

Supply Chain Management with ERP

A modern ERP system offers Just In Time processes, inventory management, and tracking technology.

In supply chain management, better information leads directly to better decisions.

Just-in-Time (JIT) processes, built into a modern ERP system, allow you to monitor inventory levels on an ongoing basis, giving you data that helps determine when you need to reorder materials so they arrive when you need them — not too early or too late — which improves efficiency and minimizes waste.

With JIT processes in place, you are also less likely to run out of supplies because these processes keep your inventory at optimal levels at all times.

ERP and Intelligent Enterprise

The distribution industry is approaching a major paradigm shift. Many distributors are still using outdated technology, and they’re feeling the pressures of increased competition, tightening margins, and new consumer expectations.

Your customers have come to expect real-time tracking on their packages. They want to know exactly where their order is, at any given time—and they should. But traditional warehouse management systems are not designed for this kind of visibility, making it difficult for you to meet these expectations.

>Upgrading to a modern ERP solution allows you to provide the kind of service your customers demand while driving down costs and increasing efficiency in your business.

The supply chain industry is evolving rapidly. With the rise of ecommerce, factories are under pressure to keep up with increased demand.

To stay competitive, distribution companies need to adopt the latest technology and digitize for the new economy.

A modern ERP system is the only solution that can keep up with this evolution. Today’s leading ERP systems are integrated solutions that combine normal business functions like accounting and inventory management with industry-specific features (like compliance and quality control). These systems enable companies to automate processes, optimize production, and manage everything from anywhere.

With a modern ERP system, supply chain companies of all sizes can take advantage of the latest technology to streamline operations. These systems allow for better collaboration between departments, as well as between companies in a supply chain. Businesses can also take advantage of powerful analytics software that provides insight into every aspect of their operation – from suppliers to customers and beyond.

All of this means increased productivity and better customer service, which translates into higher profits, lower costs, and more satisfied employees.

ERP is no longer just a nice-to-have—it’s a must-have if you want to survive in today’s market.

To discuss SAP Business One for manufacturing for your business, please contact one of our friendly industry experts today!

Warehouse Software Helps to Save Time, Money and Resources

A Warehouse software system is pretty much what it sounds like, a Warehouse Management System or WMS for short. Essentially, it’s an application that automates the movement of your products through your warehouse.

Warehouse software can be one of the greatest investments you make for your company. It consolidates, tracks and distributes data using a wide variety of methods in order to give you full transparency into your warehouse. Warehouse management systems also have in place special features to help you plan in advance and prevent unplanned downtimes and overall system failures.

What is so great about warehouse software? What can it do for your business? How does it help you maximize profits and minimize costs?

If you’ve been looking for an upgrade for your antiquated way of tracking your inventory and shipping records, here are six reasons why a warehouse software solution could be the answer.

Enhanced Inventory Management

Inventory management is absolutely crucial for any business. It is the key to understanding the financial performance of your business.

If you don’t know how much stock you have, then how can you analyse the performance of your company? And without knowing if your inventory is profitable or unprofitable, or at what point over and under-costed inventory may potentially be, how can you properly manage your finances?

Being able to keep track of, move, and maintain inventory goes a long way towards making sure that products are available for sale and that orders can be fulfilled quickly.

An effective warehouse software solution is one of the ways to reduce the stress of running a business. It helps you gain an accurate insight into what you have at hand and delay backorders to give your customers uninterrupted service.

Bottom line: you save time and money.

Informed data-driven decision making

A warehouse management system allows the creation of records for all of the products in the warehouse, including date received, the quantity on hand and the location. And whilst this is all very useful, it doesn’t give us any indication of how things are performing.

A good warehouse management system will also allow you to monitor your key performance indicators (KPIs) for each stock keeping unit (SKU).

These will be specific to your business but could include handling times, pick rates (for example, percentage of orders fulfilled within 4 hours), inventory accuracy (number of discrepancies investigated every month) and spoilage levels (rate at which products are spoiled or damaged on arrival).

An effective warehouse software system will assist with forecasting demand as these systems link directly into the accounting, giving you a full view of your business and allowing you to make data-driven decisions.

Continuous improvement

Once a warehouse facility has a clear vision of its goals and objectives, the implementation of a warehouse management system can be built to support those. If a warehouse management system is regularly implemented in phases, it can allow the warehouse to effectively keep up with current changes and regularly introduce improvements.

In addition to providing a lean, efficient platform for managing operations, a warehouse management system often integrates or is included within enterprise resource planning software. This may provide the benefits of information sharing across different functional areas within an organization that can help to maximize success across all aspects.

Enhanced Customer Service

All customers expect their goods to be delivered on time, accurately and at the right place. A good warehousing solution track your stock, calculates the lowest-cost logistics strategy, optimizes inventory levels and predicts future demand – so you can deliver what customers want, where they want it.

An improved customer experience can be achieved with a WMS. By extending your customer service team to include the warehouse team, product availability can be more accurately determined, reducing the level of customer complaints.

With fewer deliveries being cancelled or postponed due to low stock levels, you will be improving your customers’ experience by meeting their needs on time.

Increased Productivity

A warehouse that’s slow and inefficient is likely to be caused by a number of small issues such as outdated or ineffective processes and lack of motivational conditions. A warehouse management system can help with this as it offers modern systems and techniques to ensure high efficiency.

Good warehousing practices and efficient warehouse management systems can ensure that workers no longer waste time and energy on unimportant or repetitive tasks, and it can also ensure that all managers and workers have the tools they need to work smarter and more effectively.

In Conclusion

Technology has come a long way, and it’s time to take advantage of that fact. Successful wholesale businesses don’t settle for outdated technology solutions. They consider investing in the latest warehouse management system to solve their problems, increase productivity, cut costs, and improve operations.

Upgrading to a cutting-edge warehouse management system (WMS) is one of the best ways to ensure maximum efficiency and profitability in your business. If you’re looking to streamline and further automate your operation, implementing a premium warehouse management solution (WMS) will bring your company into the 21st century and provide you with real-time visibility into key metrics that can be immediately applied to increase

Signum Solutions will work with you to ensure your warehouse operations run as efficiently as possible, ultimately lowering costs and overhead. Our decades of experience will guide you every step of the way.

Signum is committed to helping companies like yours solve warehouse management problems and improve internal processes. We offer industry solutions for each of our clients with the goal of optimizing efficiency and reducing complexity.

We will work with you to ensure your warehouse operations run as efficiently as possible, ultimately lowering costs and overhead. Our decades of experience will guide you every step of the way.

To discuss your supply chain needs, please contact us on 01244 676 900 or email us using [email protected]

SAP Business One Inventory Made Easy

Inventory management is one of the most important, and at the same time, one of the most challenging aspects that every company faces. Having a good inventory management strategy is essential to every business. This article explains how SAP Business One has made inventory management easier than ever before.

If a stock runs out, customers’ orders are cancelled. In larger quantities, the ordered items are shipped only after some time. In some cases, the stock is replenished right away when it becomes available again. The one thing in common with all of this confusion is that the order process is delayed and customers might have to wait before they can place an order again or buy the product from another store.

The inventory management problem has a major impact on wholesale distribution industry in addition to several challenges faced by companies across diverse industries. Companies need effective inventory management for successful operations.

The SAP Business One inventory module enables you to make stock and inventory management an integral part of your end-to-end ERP solution, connecting both processes and data across procurement, sales, stock management and finance.

The flexible user interface in the native SAP Business One allows you to put the relevant information for managing your company’s inventory at the centre of your business processes to make management decisions possible.

This short video gives you a quick insight into the benefits of using SAP Business One to accurately and effectively managing your inventory. (You can also access additional SAP Business One product and Industry videos by visiting our YouTube channel here )

Managing inventory correctly is often the key to business success. If you lose track of your stock you can end up selling products or paying for them when they’re no longer needed.

Not only does this affect your bottom line but it also stops you meeting customer demand and kills customer satisfaction.

SAP Business One is the perfect enterprise solution designed specifically with small and mid-sized businesses in mind. It can be used for both transactional and analytical purposes – helping to drive growth, improve customer satisfaction and achieve your company goals.

Ready to learn more?

Download the info pack below or get in touch for a personalised demonstration.

CTA banner, Signum Solutions wholesale Infopack

Distribution ERP for Efficient and Effective Performance

Distribution ERP is a vital part of distribution business and helps distributors in increasing the efficiency as well as effectiveness of their business.

In today’s fast-paced world, efficiency and effectiveness are now expected of all distribution systems at all times. Many distributors already use ERP (enterprise resource planning) systems to manage their shipments, inventory, accounting, CRM (customer relationship management), and more.

ERP software is commonly viewed as a mainstay of industry as well as something that should be useful in optimising operations across the board. Thus, it’s easy to assume that most distributors will take advantage of this technology as part of their operations.

Here are five reasons why you need ERP software if you’re in the distribution business:

Increased Demand Planning Capability

Today, most distribution ERP solutions are delivered with a built-in demand planning module that allows you to do demand planning at a very low cost. The module provides built-in reports that show forecast accuracy, the deviation from the actual forecast and how it affects your inventory.

An inbuilt forecasting module assists you to make educated decisions regarding inventory levels and potential purchase orders. Planning with actual historical information from your sales team will help you improve your forecasting ability.

Inventory Management

As important as efficient operations are in a business, effective inventory management is key to sales and success. Companies may think that advanced forecasting and sophisticated reporting means they can make accurate decisions about the inventory they carry.

Inventory that is not aligned to demand can lead to a drop in sales turnover and the need for more space in the warehouse. Moreover, over- stocked inventory results in increased costs and lost profit potential.

Distribution ERP maximises inventory efficiency. It makes sure that you find the right product in the right place at the right time.

Supply Chain Management

An ERP software streamlines the supply chain and automates various processes, creating efficiency and reducing wastage, as well as tracking the stock. This removes all the human errors, adds transparency, reduces time spent on data entry and reconciling and speeds up your business processes overall.

Without an ERP, it can be difficult to trace a product from its origin to each stage of its lifecycle. Distribution Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software is very important in today’s world. This software plays a major role in growing businesses through increased productivity and lowering operational costs.

Reduced Operating Costs

Bringing down the operational costs by adopting an ERP solution can result in significant benefits for any business. In wholesale and distribution businesses, where a large number of transactions are taking place daily, processes require to be automated across different functions like financials, operations, logistics and warehouse management.

The cost savings from implementing a distribution ERP solution are many. It also makes running a business easier as all critical functions are integrated into one system that is easily accessible on-the-go.

Enhanced Quality Control

You can manage your inventory with an ERP solution, keeping a detailed record of all your products. By tracking and reporting lot numbers, batch numbers, and serial numbers, you’ll be able to identify issues as soon as they arise.

With a comprehensive view of your entire warehouse, you can keep an eye on quality control across all your products.

Conclusion

No matter what kind of distribution business you operate – from wholesaling to e-commerce – the goal is to sell and deliver products efficiently and effectively.

Of course, survival requires both, but efficiency is the name of the game since distributors that waste money are more likely to see shrinking margins in an ultra-competitive landscape.

ERP software can help distributors save money and improve efficiency, allowing them to run and grow their businesses more effectively.

Our Distribution ERP system is a proven and scalable solution for your business. If you want to maximize your profits and minimize your costs, then act now—we can help you reach every goal with the most effective, user-friendly platform available.


Contact us today! 

Benefits of using Business Management Software

A business management software system (or ERP) is a software package that automates business operations. It can be used for everything from retail to production and can help you work more efficiently and accurately.

Business management software has become a popular way for small businesses to run more efficiently, and many large companies continue to adopt this practice in order to reduce their expenses and cut their time for administrative tasks.

In addition, there are many specific benefits to using business management software. These include improved supply chain activities, better inventory levels, more cost-efficient manufacturing processes, and fewer errors from human data entry.

A business management system (or ERP) gives you more time to analyse and grow your business, making your business more organized and profitable—while better serving customers.

The following are the top 3 benefits of having a business management system.

Increased Productivity

One of the biggest benefits of using a business management system is that it cuts out a great deal of the time spent on administrative tasks, which is one of the most significant costs for many organizations.

Using business management software allows your employees to get more done, because it does the tedious jobs for them. They can spend their time doing other, more valuable, and meaningful work.

Improved Inventory Management

Having a quality business management software system can be very beneficial. It will help you optimize your inventory levels and make inventory control more precise, which in turn prompt you to make informed decisions. This will certainly raise your company’s profits significantly.

Real-time Reporting

With a business management system, your business will be able to gain in-depth knowledge about its financial situation. True real-time reporting can dramatically improve your business and direct access to information means faster, more accurate business decisions every time.

Summary

There are a lot of business managers that might wonder whether or not technology is good for their company. It can often be hard to tell whether the benefits of business management software outweigh the costs until you make the decision to implement.

But in reality, technology is good for just about any company no matter its size.

A business management system makes running your business easier, allowing you to focus your attention on the growing aspects of your business. It also allows you to manage finances, projects, and human resources efficiently and easily.

There are so many business management software solutions available on the market and it can be difficult choosing one that you can rely on.

However, if you’re looking for an efficient solution which will enable your business to work more effectively, get in touch with one of our Signum Solution experts today!

PiP Chemicals; Funding for Growth

PiP Chemicals Logo

Signum Customer, PIP Chemicals have recently been successful in securing funding for a new WMS solution. We caught up with Adam Hunniford, Managing Director, to talk about the challenges, the process and what advice he is able to offer other companies who may be considering the funding option.

The Company

PIP Chemicals is a chemical manufacturing company based in Newtownards, supplying cleaning, care and protection products, to the auto and sanitising industries.

The Challenge

As PIP Chemical has grown, requiring the need for additional staffing and resources, it has become increasingly difficult to maintain quality standards. In earlier times, the individual doing the manufacturing would likely have been deeply involved with the product development as well as material sourcing.

As a result, operator errors could be easily minimized because the operator knew what he was expecting. As staffing levels increased, this connection is impossible to maintain. Errors in production were becoming more common and were only picked up at quality control stages. This then led to time and money wasted reprocessing and remanufacturing products. Additionally, increased physical size of the operation has meant that goods are much more widely spread.

Consequently, there is the further time wastage trying to locate materials within the warehouse and a need for operatives to keep a mental note to try to expedite their processes.

In order to move the operation forward, it was decided that these uncertainties needed removed. It was no longer acceptable that a manufacturing operative could be expected to reliably differentiate between chemicals of similar name. The chemicals would need to be able to be identified by the SAP system and be checked prior to use. It was no longer acceptable to rely that quantities used were accurately transcribed to manufacturing sheets. The quantities should be captured from weighing equipment and actual quantities recorded rather than fixed back flushing. It was no longer acceptable for operatives to have to remember where materials are stored and spend valuable time locating. The locations should be recorded and the system should be able to prompt the operative where to go to find them.

With these various elements addressed, the business will be able to move forward, operating more accurately, more efficiently and in a position where further growth requires much less reliance on operative knowledge.

Funding companies approached and reasoning why those specifically

There really only was InvestNI for a project of this kind. We have a long running partnership with them where they have assisted in several technological solutions as well as increasing employment.

Funding company involvement

As a long term partner, we were well aware of what was required. InvestNI are fantastic and worked with us right through the process, guiding not only how they would potentially help financially, but also assisting in ensuring that the solution was suitable for the task we had in mind.

The application process

As long term partners, it was very easy. All of our company records and financial reports are provided each year such that there was no requirement to duplicate. Once the general remit and costs were agreed with our client executive and IT specialist, the application process took a matter of 1-2 hours to submit in the electronic system. There was some further communication to get details sorted – something that took some weeks as it required input from ourselves and Signum – but it was straight forward and could have been done within a couple of days, had schedules allowed. There was no pressure on timescales as InvestNI are very understanding that projects like these, with multiple parties, do take time to get right. Once all was submitted, we had a positive answer within 2 week.

Future expectations

The funding allows PIP Chemicals to implement a class leading system which places us firmly at the top of our sector. Whilst the company remains moderately sized, we will have processes and capabilities exceeding many of those which are more than 10x the size. We will be in a position to scale up easily without expensive and painful exercises changing the core business systems.

Advice to companies looking to apply for/raise funding

Talk! Talk to your funding partners. They are there to help! They are not trying to block you from getting funding, they actively want to give it to you if you can prove the value of that input and that it will meet with their strategic goals. Additionally, don’t expect something for nothing – if you aren’t willing to invest your own money, why would a funder be willing to do it?

Adam Hunniford, PIP Chemicals

How can SAP B1 improve your business?

As one of the UK’s leading SAP Business One partners, we are often asked; how can SAP Business One (SAP B1) improve my business?

This question generally comes from companies who are looking to review or replace their current ERP or accounting software and is often followed with the question “isn’t SAP too big for my business?”

There is a common misconception that SAP is only suitable for the larger enterprise businesses however what most people don’t know is that SAP business one was specifically designed for the SME market and over 70% of SAP’s customers are small businesses.

So now we have put that myth to bed, let’s have a look at the benefits of SAP Business One for your SME business.

Let’s start with the basics… what is SAP Business One?

Often known as business management software. SAP Business One or SAP B1 as some people know it, is an ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) solution specifically designed for the small and medium enterprises. A powerful and scalable solution, SAP Business One (SAP B1) offers you an affordable way to manage your entire business processes from accounting and financials to purchasing and inventory.

SAP Business One allows you to handle all our department needs with one solution giving you greater insight into your business and therefore enabling you to make more informed decisions and drive profitable growth.

SAP Business One (SAP B1) can help you to boost your business in several key areas. These include:

  • Financial management
  • Sales and Customer management
  • Purchasing and Inventory Control
  • Business intelligence
  • Manufacturing planning
  • Analytics and reporting

You can also take advantage of extensive industry specific features built around the SAP Business One solution. With more than 500 pre-packaged, fully integrated industry specific solutions available worldwide, there isn’t much SAP Business One can’t do for your business.

Let’s now touch on some of the functionality available for Financial management in SAP Business One.

SAP Business One provides a complete set of tools for Financial Management, these cover key areas such as:

  • Accounting – SAP Business One gives you the ability to automate the handling of all key accounting processes including accounts payable and receivable and journal entries.
  • Banking –This module handles a full range of monetary transactions including processing reconciliations, bank statements and the ability to quickly process payments from various methods including cash, credit card and bank transfers.
  • Controlling – You can manage project costs, budget and cash flow with greater accuracy and efficiency
  • Reporting and Analysis – You can create standard or customised reports using real time data to aid you in your decision-making process and any audit review processes.
  • Fixed AssetsThis feature allows you to simplify the management of your fixed assets with a virtual function, eliminating the need for repetitive manual data entry

Acquiring new customers is important for business success, but maximising customer relationships is crucial to survival. The SAP Business One Sales and Customer Management functions provides you with the tools to turn prospects into customers, grow customer sales and profitability and increase customer satisfaction. These tools include:

  • Sales and Opportunity ManagementFrom first lead to closing the deal, SAP Business One (SAP Business 1) can track all your activities throughout the sales
  • Service ManagementThis module gives you the ability to respond to service calls quickly as well as manage warranty, contracts and service agreements more effectively.
  • Marketing Campaign ManagementTurn prospects into customers and grow your sales and profitability with the campaign management feature. You can create, manage and analyse marketing activity effectively with this module.
  • Reporting and AnalysisUse templates to design detailed reports, from forecasting to pipeline tracking. With this function from SAP Business One you can monitor all aspects of the sales process.
  • Customer ManagementSynchronise contacts stored in Microsoft Outlook and manage all your customer data in the one place with this module within SAP Business One (SAP B1)
  • Mobile SalesThis feature gives you the ability to empower your sales function so they can manage information anywhere at any time on a mobile device.

The SAP Business One Purchasing and Inventory module benefits you by streamlining the complete procurement process from purchase order creation to vendor invoice payment.

As well as achieving cost savings by automating this process, with SAP Business One you gain full transparency into purchasing activities, suppliers and their performance. This module offers:

  • Procurement – SAP Business One  allows you to optimise your procurement processes such as requisition requests, purchase order and good receipt creation. You can also manage returns and handle multiple currencies.
  • Master Data Management – Centralise purchasing processes by managing detailed data in a user-friendly interface. View account balance and purchase analyses while maintaining detailed item purchasing information with price lists and tax information.
  • Warehouse and Accounting Integration – Benefit from real-time synchronisation of goods receipts and inventory levels in the warehouse to perform purchase planning with ease and create an accounts payable invoice automatically from a purchase order or goods receipt.
  • Accounts Payable – This powerful module from SAP Business 1 gives you the power to plan materials needed and schedule your purchasing. You can also process accounts payable invoices, cancellation and credit memos. All this gives you the ability to lower costs and strengthen your supply chain relationships.
  • Reporting – SAP Business One allows you to gain an overview of what matters most. You can generate integrated reports from real-time data to that display in various formats or dashboards.

To aid you in making decisions faster and better, SAP Business One includes a powerful Business Intelligence module that can create reports based on company wide data.

  • Report creation and Customisation – With SAP B1 you can access data from multiple sources, create new reports, and customise existing ones in a variety of layouts with minimal IT overhead.
  • Interactive Analysis – SAP B1 allows you to see your business from a variety of perspectives by integrating with standard Microsoft Excel functionalities.
  • Intuitive tools – Get insights faster with the ability to drag and relate and drill down data and use search assistance and workflow-based alerts.
  • Powerful data visualisations – Make better decisions by enhancing your reports with powerful visualisations.
  • Analytics with predefined metrics – Improve your cash balance visibility and sales performance dramatically with analytics and predefined key performance indicators.

SAP Business One (SAP B1) can also support the business requirements of a modern manufacturer. It offers the ability to accurately and effectively manage your bills of materials (BOM’s) along with production orders and material requirements, all in one centralised ERP system.

  • Bills of Materials (BOM’s) – SAP Business 1 makes it easier for you to store the details relating to how your products are built and sold, and they can be created to cover standard, sales and template types of products.
  • Production orders – With SAP Business 1 it is easier to capture the usage of materials required to build your finished products. Production orders can be raised to cover standard and reword production activities.
  • Forecasting and Planning – Forecasts allow users to predict demand based on potential future requirements and scenarios, instead of relying solely on received orders. Forecast calculations can often help users foresee future demand for the product and adjust material planning accordingly. These demand forecasts can be used in the MRP software wizard.
  • Order Recommendations SAP Business One offers a recommendation report that the planner can use to automatically select and recommended purchase orders or production orders for automatic creation. For this process, SAP Business One considers several supply and demand sources including stock levels, production orders, sales orders amongst others and if the item is outsourced, SAP Business One easily allows you to convert a production order into a purchase order. You can even consolidate purchase orders to the same supplier into one order, this streamlines your process and saves you time.

SAP Business One can be used whether you are a small, or midsized company. As you expand your business, this cleverly crafted ERP solution, can grow with your business.

Leading technology companies across the world have created “add-ons” for SAP Business One, to help tailor it specifically to your needs. Some vendor’s, like Signum Solutions, can provide you with specific versions already tailored to your exact kind of company. We offer the following industry specific SAP Business One versions:

Food & Beverage

Signum’s SAP Business One (SAP Business 1) Industry Edition for Food and Beverage manufacturing is a complete food MRP/ERP system that encompasses management of manufacturing business alongside specific food manufacturing business processes.

Rising raw material costs, extended supply chains and increasing regulatory controls, put ever increasing demands on food and beverage manufacturers. With SAP Business One Industry Edition – Food and Beverage, Signum can work with you to deliver an integrated business platform.

Wholesalers

Using the SAP Business One from Signum gives you complete visibility across all systems in real time and gives accurate and consistent data on sales, inventory, financials, and more to help you make smart decisions and power your business forward.

SAP Business One software enables you to build long term relationships with customers by tracking their buying patterns and prompting you when up-sell and cross-sell opportunities arise. More importantly, it enables your sales and customer service teams to have meaningful conversations with customers during and after the sales process.

Chemicals and Coatings

With SAP Business One from Signum, you can manage critical business processes, including supply chain planning and execution, manufacturing planning and execution, as well as sales and marketing. Plus, you can manage assets, analyse customer and supplier data, and manage regulatory compliance and other value-added processes.

Conclusion: SAP Business One is that single-point solution which combines all your business functions and streamlines all your business processes. The result is improved business efficiency, increased profit margins, better decision making, reduction in costs, happy customers and greater command over your business.

 

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Optimise Profitability For Your Wholesale Distribution Business

A blog sharing five points to consider when looking at how to optimise profitability in your wholesale distribution business.

Increasing profitability is one of the key objectives for any business. This is especially true for wholesalers where margins can be thin, and it is even more important to make sure you are doing all you can to squeeze as much profit out of every transaction. Achieving greater profitability, however, isn’t always straightforward – there are a lot of moving parts in wholesale distribution.

Additionally, the changes implemented by competitors can also affect a business’s profitability. It is therefore important to look at your value proposition, customer acquisition strategy, and operations model – to help you decide what could be potential areas for improvement.

Wholesale distribution is one of the most competitive B2B industries, and with more than 7,000 distributors competing for business, it’s no wonder that margins are being squeezed.

The following five points will help you identify areas for improvement and how to go about ensuring you optimise profitability:

Automate your chargeback process  

When you factor in how much time and money you spend on managing orders and chasing up payments, it’s clear there has to be a better way. Automating your system for chargebacks and rebates can save you the time you’d otherwise spend logging sales, transfers, payments, and transactions, so you can focus more attention on what really matters – letting your customers know just how great your products are.

Perform analysis of your cost-to-serve

Analysing your customers based on the cost-to-serve them, is an excellent way to determine how your organization can be more profitable. This allows you to figure out which of those customers should receive the most attention as you attempt to maximize profits for your corporation. When this type of analysis is performed after a sales lead is obtained, there is potential for greater profitability.

Improve your supplier relationships

The importance of suppliers with regards to modern business has increased considerably over the years. It’s important to find the right suppliers for your business and build a good relationship with them. This will improve your discounts and terms for purchases, but more importantly it will improve the quality of service you receive. However, vendors change so you must ensure that you uphold this relationship by continuing to buy from them while being productive and servicing your customer in society. By establishing and maintaining a partnership with suppliers, service providers can streamline their business, gain a competitive advantage, and increase profitability.

Integrate your planning & execution

Working at a business means making decisions and executing on those decisions. Your strategic plan needs to be implemented and sometimes requires course corrections as the business evolves. This makes it imperative that you make data-driven decisions, which you can do by integrating planning and execution. By integrating these two aspects of business, you can streamline your operations, make smarter time-sensitive decisions, and get a real-time total view of your whole business.

Enhance your inventory management

Inventory management is crucial to ensure the stock you buy has the highest profit margin possible. By monitoring prices and trends, you are able to determine when goods are cheap so you can buy a lot of them and sell them for a higher price in the future. This real-time view of your inventory gives you the advantage over companies that do not have the same information.

SAP Business One industry edition for Wholesalers offers you the perfect for all your business functions: Sales, Purchasing, Inventory Management, Channel Management and Customer Service and provides you with an integrated view of your company’s data. You can easily analyse all your spending and see which customers offer you the best terms and profits. By automating chargebacks, you can save time and effort chasing payments. All of which can help optimise the profitability of your wholesale business with less effort.

 

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5 Signs to show you have outgrown Sage 50

Have you outgrown Sage 50? The answer is more complex than you think. You didn’t suddenly “outgrow” your accounting software. It’s more likely a shift in operations or your approach to business has outpaced the power and capabilities of Sage 50, creating a need for more effective processes and better information management.

So, how do you know if your business has outgrown Sage 50?

There’s no way of knowing for sure. It may be that you’re looking to grow into a more powerful solution, or you’re looking for additional functionality than Sage 50 can offer and now require an advanced, comprehensive solution.

We know that it’s not easy to say goodbye to a long-time partner. Regardless of whether they were a good friend, or they never did anything the same way twice, it’s always hard to walk away from something that you have grown up with.

With Sage 50, we know you’ve gotten lots of value from the software. But just as life changes, so does your business software needs.

There are a few tell-tale signs that you have outgrown Sage 50 and need to look at upgrading your software, let’s take a closer look at the top 5.

1: You work with manual processes and your data is often out of date or inaccurate

Manual data entry and slow, inefficient processes cause outdated or inaccurate business data that is bad for your bottom line. One of the most prevalent signs you have outgrown Sage 50 is that your business has manual workflows, either within your accounting software or through your own processes.

2: You have limited business visibility and difficulty getting the report you need

Ideally, you want to be able to get an immediate snapshot of your business and know how the business is performing. Sage 50 gives you the bare minimum. For example, it may take you a few weeks to get organized because having to cycle through your chart of accounts to find a particular transaction and then copying/pasting transactions from other areas of your system to build a report

3: You operate disconnected systems and feel it is holding you back

A healthy business relationship requires coordination between different departments. Financial data like payments and purchases should be immediately available to all personnel involved in approving and making it happen. Customer and product related information should be communicated to the right people as soon as anything happens. Better integration between systems leads to better communication, which leads to better business relationships and more effective decision-making.

4.You need more of your employees to have access and don’t feel it is scalable

Once you have more than a dozen users, performance becomes an issue. It is necessary to spend a lot of time tweaking the system to avoid bottlenecks, including implementing small changes. You might be running a business and notice that there are several people working in the same area and it slows down your work when you need to produce reports or create invoices. When you enter data into Sage 50 you may notice that it does not take long before typing starts becoming an issue and mistakes occur. This can result in frustration and loss of productivity among your employees.

5: You are experiencing system crashes and data corruption

With business expansion comes expansion of data and when you have ten times more data than what your system was designed for, Sage 50 will eventually start to crash unexpectedly and show incorrect data in reports. There is a chance that as your database system becomes overloaded, some of the underlying data may be corrupted. This is caused by an error in the database where your information is stored. There are a number of reasons this could happen, one of which is an overloaded database.

Does any of this sound familiar? If so, your business has most definitely outgrown your Sage 50 software and it’s time to consider alternatives.

For many companies who have outgrown their Sage 50 software, SAP Business One (SAP B1) offers the next level of business management. After transitioning to SAP Business One, you’ll be able to take advantage of its additional features and capabilities which make it easy to manage your growing company.

SAP Business One offers you the freedom to choose the right ERP system for your business. Scale it from small to large, and from lean to mean, as your business evolves. Reduce IT costs and risk with a single point of entry for integration with other enterprise systems.

 

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The problems with inefficient picking in a warehouse & how to overcome them

So, how do you tell your warehouse has any problems with inefficient picking? Well, first of all: what is inefficient picking? Unlike other warehouse operations, picking is not just about putting things in boxes and shipping them out.

Efficient picking actually means having the right inventory at the right location at the right time, to eliminate waste and delays from wrong orders. In fact, if your warehouse is not already measuring its efficiency, it is a sure sign that something is wrong.

Let’s take a look at some of the most common problems with inefficient picking in a warehouse:

  1. Zero visibility of current storage levels
  2. No stock visibility to picking lanes / workstations
  3. Lack of real-time updates on picking activities
  4. Picking activities not synced with actual picking locations
  5. Exact location of items not known at the time of pick
  6. Employees spending time walking from one place to another
  7. No cross-training / overburdened employees
  8. Fragmentation of data
  9. Items are not correctly sorted
  10. Wrong picking order within same SKU
  11. Incorrect cycle counting practices
  12. Manual checking done repetitively

 

The picking processes in your business are one of the most critical components to ensuring that you are maximizing inventory turns and getting the right products to the right place at the right time.

 

Whether you run a small business, or are responsible for an entire network of warehouses, the ability to effectively make and coordinate pick deliveries is one of your most important responsibilities. The efficiency of your picking processes greatly impacts your ability to meet customer orders while minimizing inventory costs.

One way to improve your current operations is to implement a new business management solution that can help reduce cycle times and errors, optimize your order selection and routing, while being flexible enough to handle changes in requirements.

While automating all processes is not always possible, it is important to have a full view of how inventory moves through your supply chain when you consider ways to improve picking processes.

The good news is that today’s business management technologies can help you quickly address those challenges and other inefficient practices in your warehouse by providing a streamlined, integrated solution to capture which items are needed; who needs them; where they’re located; when they need to be picked; and what route or vehicle will get the items there on time.

This is what SAP Business One as a warehouse management system can do for you.

SAP Business One delivers full visibility across the enterprise and into your suppliers, providing an accurate view of your inventory, cycle counts and planned purchases. Whether you need a complete inventory solution or just want real-time visibility into what items are available, SAP Business One provides a single version of truth to help make smarter business decisions with confidence.

Run A More Efficient Warehouse, Run SAP Business One

 

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