According to a recent Knowledge@Wharton paper, the need for business simplification has never been more urgent. Even small companies are having to become more global, outsource parts of their operations, create digital businesses that serve many channels, and meet complex tax and compliance requirements.
It’s imperative that as they grow, small and midsize companies fight the natural tendency to create complex business processes that will only bog them down, limit transparency, and rob them of the agility needed to meet demands for change. Because once these processes are in place, they are difficult and costly to unravel.
The most successful high-growth companies are forging a better path – one that will allow them to stay agile, scalable, and responsive, regardless of how big they grow.
As noted in an Economist Intelligence Unit paper, “Scaling SMEs: Building a flexible platform for growth,” many are choosing to deploy business software that supports connected, automated processes and full business transparency. And they are reaping the benefits of simpler, leaner, more efficient operations, even as they grow.
For example, to work more effectively with partners, gain transparency, and support continuing growth, many small and midsize SAP customers are deploying integrated enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions. An ERP solution can enhance operations in ways that improve the quality, consistency, and on-time delivery of products and services. It can also provide greater visibility into purchase orders, resulting in better inventory management, data access, collaboration, and customer service. And as a result, these organisations can stay ahead of the competition – both now and in the future.
Similarly, legacy IT applications (and continued reliance on spreadsheets) can make it hard to keep up as inventories and orders grow – which eventually leads to fulfillment bottlenecks. Small businesses are solving these issues by replacing their outdated software with solutions connecting their e-commerce, manufacturing, and other areas of their business. A comprehensive ERP system designed for growing small businesses can provide a user-friendly interface, centralise database, simplified accounting, streamlined information sharing and reporting, and automated core processes to help staff do more in less time. Often, companies can scale significantly without the need for new hires and mange busy future seasons with confidence.
And other firms are combining an ERP solution designed for growing companies with the SAP HANA platform and analytics in order to accelerate core processes; make faster, more informed decisions; stay ahead of customer demand; and maintain a competitive edge.
These examples aren’t hypothetical. They are reality today for thousands of small and midsize firms who are realizing huge returns on their investment in SAP software as a platform for growth. For example, customers have reported:
- 67% faster monthly accounting and closing cycles (from 6 to 2 days)
- 2-3 day reduction in sales of inventory
- 60% increase in operational efficiency
- 10% reduction in operational costs
- 67% improvement in on-time shipping to consumers
- Automated data entry and credit card processing that saves 40-80 hours per week
- Vastly shorter timeframes to train new employees
These kind of improvements are a direct result of running simpler on business software that centralises, automates, and streamlines information and processes.
To speak to someone about the benefits of simplification with Business ByDesign click here.