Give Your Business a Spring Clean!

Prepare your business and system to be as fit for the new future as it can be.

We have identified a once in a lifetime opportunity to smooth your business processes, get the system set up re-aligned such that you can get rid of the spreadsheets and workarounds – and associated wasted costs.

We’re all finding available time to do useful things, there is no reason why you should not be doing the same with your business processes and your ERP.

What we do know is that we will come out on the other side of this, and it is vital that your business be ready and take advantage.

FAQs

In good times the extra costs and time and inefficiencies can be hidden behind growth and profit. In the current circumstances, many stakeholders are asking themselves:

  • How can I ensure the survival of my company?
  • How can I reduce my need for cash? How do I become lean and yet capable?
  • How do I grind out the inefficiencies so we can best compete when times improve?

If any of these make sense to you, the opportunity to re-align the processes, within your core ERP infrastructure with the leanest apt work processes for your staff, can get rid of the spreadsheet, workarounds and unnecessary cost associated with the inefficiencies to make you lean and capable. Ready to take full advantage when the economy begins to recover.

‘Change is Normal’, it is likely that the way your business works now is not exactly the same as it was five years ago, and probably not the same as when the system was last setup.

  • Old clients ask for new things, new clients come along, new market opportunities appear.
  • Gaps appear between the things your clients ask you to do, the processes your staff do to deliver and the ways your system processes were setup.
  • Gaps express themselves in the rise of spreadsheets, databases and manual workarounds, resulting in extra administration, wasted time and effort and additional cost.
  • It can often also show in the time taken to complete month-end and year-end, not to mention the diminishing confidence in the general reporting.

An audit allows you to re-steer the business through tweaking existing business and system processes or creating new ones. It is critical to ensure your business systems align with your general business workflow, so if one alters, so should the other.

There will never be an opportunity like this where time is available within the business to attend to how it functions effectively, to reduce the time and cost of doing and managing.

Once the economy recovers, ‘I’m too busy’ will re-enter the lexicon. In these unprecedented times, UK business is facing opportunities, and there is no reason why companies should not take this option in reviewing their processes and optimising their ERP’s.

Many companies will currently be operating on reduced or negligible throughput due to market and logistical challenges, so this provides a “once in a lifetime” opportunity to carry out a detailed ‘process-system’ audit to ensure that everything works at an optimal efficiency level for when productivity increases again.

We have the broadest range of CSI skills and experience available on the market, based on a framework of strong business and professional acumen. We provide a holistic service – considering the system’s health from all perspectives, without exposure to internal stresses. In addition, we have:

  • Over 20 years’ background in this work
  • 15 professionals who have practical industrial, manufacturing, commercial backgrounds who therefore can contribute to the discussion
  • 15-years’ experience actually setting up ERP and are accredited Infor CSI delivery partners
  • Technical expertise in personalisations and parameter setting recognised as amongst the best in the UK and Europe
  • Current projects being carried out successfully, right now, remotely

We can therefore work with you to execute an excellent, efficient alignment project without fuss that delivers real value.

Based on projects delivered for clients previously below are some of the typical problems we identify:

  • Costing issues resulting in significant variances and an inability to rely on the core system.
  • Processes not being reviewed and updated, generating a quick fix reliance on spreadsheets with manual corrections resulting in an inability to use standard functionality.
  • Supply chain challenges resulting in stock outages, air freight costs and order shipping delays all which could be avoided.
  • Data issues leading to BoM inaccuracies, stock discrepancies and shortages, inability to support accurate costing, causing operational delays that impacted production costs and customer service.
  • Production planning and scheduling are performed using a series of spreadsheets, despite the current availability of superior functionality in the ERP system resulting in the unnecessary administrative effort and avoidable mistakes that impact operational efficiency and customer service.
  • Unnecessary personalisations that were incurring maintenance costs and posed a risk to future upgrades
  • Daily re-keying of data into multiple spreadsheets, leading to silos of information with inaccurate and incomplete data – multiple versions of the truth, yet poor business intelligence around costings, margins, and other key metrics.

Typical actions flowing from our initial audit:

    • Realigning the workflows in the system
    • Reviewing and cleaning the data
    • Re-jigging the detail business processes to remove unnecessary spreadsheets, databases and manual workarounds
    • Upgrade of the system to the latest version
    • Taking advantage of hitherto unknown capabilities for costing, reporting, planning, scheduling, marginal analysis, channel p&ls etc.

The biggest risk in our view is doing nothing!  Do nothing and the extra time and costs of doing things twice, knife and forking data between spreadsheets will continue and get worse. The time window will close as the markets ramp up, and any competitors who took the opportunity of reviewing their underlying business efficiency and cutting edge will have an advantage.

The first step is not a new system, it is re-aligning the processes in your existing one with the ‘real’ processes in your business (i.e. excluding spreadsheets, double keying, workarounds etc. that only add cost and time), alongside data cleaning and correcting the setup and parameters to best suit.

So, you need to weigh up how critical it is to protect the business and ensure it can hit the ground running when times improve – taking full advantage of the new normal that is likely, then.

Survive and Thrive or Struggle and Strive?

Initially, a conversation with us to discuss what can be done, followed by conversations between us and appropriate business leads. After this, all we need is remote access to the system and any spreadsheets and databases.

We will complete the audit within an agreed short timescale, then submit and discuss our findings and the best ways forward, with you.

Key Areas We Will Focus On

Over time, any ERP system can become clogged by old and corrupt data, system set-up issues, functional inconsistencies and poor processes.  These collectively contribute to the system not working effectively, forcing the users to start working outside of functionality. We can explore all areas below for you:

We will complete the audit within an agreed short timescale, then submit and discuss our findings and the best ways forward, with you.

Processes

Audit processes to identify areas for change, such as manual activities or error correction.

Settings

Confirm parameter settings and evaluate if the as-is configuration remains fit for purpose.

Data

Review existing data records to identify elements that may cause process and integrity issues.

Technical

Audit and document customisations to determine fitness for any subsequent upgrade.

Security

Validate roles and permissions to establish whether the system is robust and processes are secure.

Survive and Thrive not Struggle and Strive

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Call Gradient now on: +44 (0)1282 463 710