Wednesday, 20 March 2019 10:34

Profitsflow launch into United States

Following on from successful ERP implementations with customers in North America, Profitsflow are ready to launch into the United States

Published in Features

The first Profitsflow ERP Information Morning of 2019 was held on Thursday March 14th at the Park Inn by Radisson Shannon Airport.

Published in blog
Thursday, 07 February 2019 09:55

Benefits of Field Service Software

Profitsflow provides Eagle Field Service software, authored by Profitsflow’s partner, Exel Computer Systems in the UK.

 

The three main benefits of any field service software is:

  • To increase efficiency
  • To reduce costs
  • To improve customer service
Published in blog
Tuesday, 18 December 2018 10:35

Spotlight Series: Menu Dashboards

Within version 6 of EFACS E/8, Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and Reporting are embedded into the Menu Dashboard. These dashboards can be either a BIRT report or a Microsoft Power BI report.

Published in blog
Friday, 30 November 2018 11:39

Reasons to Begin Your ERP Journey in 2019

The New Year is the time for making resolutions to change habits. Businesses are no different, with many companies pursuing an ERP implementation, or replacing an existing ERP system, when the new year comes around. Are you or your company thinking about pursuing an ERP project for 2019? 

Published in blog

The last Profitsflow ERP Information Morning for 2018 was held on Wednesday November 21st at the Carnegie Court Hotel, Swords, Co. Dublin.

Published in blog

Profitsflow are delighted to announce that we will once again be taking part in the Lumenia ERP Head to Head event. For this event, we will be demonstrating the EFACS E/8 ERP software.

 

Profitsflow was established in 2009. Since then, we have built a reputation as an expect ERP provider to Ireland’s manufacturing and field service sectors. We provide a full sales, implementation, development and ongoing technical support service to all of our customers throughout the island of Ireland and beyond. As an end-to-end solution provider, our clients benefit from the fact that we are a local resource with a wealth of experience implementing our products in their industry.

Authored by UK based Exel Computer Systems, EFACS E/8 is a modern, fully integrated, flexible ERP software solution encompassing a broad range of business functions aimed at driving improved efficiency, visibility and organisational performance.

 

The ERP Head to Head event will be taking place over two days, 16th and 17th of October, in The Crowne Plaza, Dublin Airport. Over the course of these two days, 12 vendors will showcase their ERP software.

Vendors will be giving an in depth 60 minute demonstrations on Finance, Production, Procurement, HR, Projects and Sales. This year, Profitsflow will be taking part in the Production and Sales Quotation demonstrations.

There will be vendor-independent presentations from Lumenia Consulting and there will be plenty of networking opportunities.

 

If you are planning to select, upgrade or replace your ERP system, then this is the event for you. It is an ideal opportunity to efficiently review 12 leading ERP products and vendors. Each vendor is working from the same predefined demo sheet, ensuring easy comparisons for the attendees.



You can pre-register your interest in this event now. 

Early bird tickets are available before August 31st.

 

We hope to see you at the Crowne Plaza, Dublin Airport on 16th and 17th October!

Published in blog

The Capacity Planning module in the EFACS E/8 software aids the manufacturing sector by alleviating the pressure of controlling and planning many manufacturing jobs, which are composed of a number of operations using limited resources.

Published in blog

There are some common misconceptions surrounding ERP systems which can mislead customers away from pursuing an ERP system. This post will take a look at some of the most common misconceptions that Profitsflow have encountered from customers and how we answer these misconception. 

Published in blog
Tuesday, 12 June 2018 08:06

How to Plan for Your ERP Success

This post is about helping you to plan for a successful ERP implementation. It could have been called “How to Avoid an ERP Implementation Failure”, but by following these steps, you will be set on the path for a successful implementation.

Published in blog
Wednesday, 09 May 2018 14:09

Top Tips on Choosing an ERP System

Choosing an ERP system can seem like a daunting task. It is a big undertaking but in the end it will streamline your business workflow. If you are thinking of implementing an ERP system, consider our top tips for choosing an ERP system that is right for YOU.

Published in blog
Monday, 26 March 2018 10:50

Why Choose EFACS and Profitsflow?

EFACS E/8 is a modern, fully integrated, flexible business solution. Built using the latest internet technology, EFACS E/8 can be run either in the cloud or on-premise. It has a component structure that enable an economic and precise fit to the most demanding of business requirements. It is browser based and operates on either a Microsoft platform with an SQL Server databases, or can run under linux on an Oracle database.

 

The benefits of implementing the EFACS solution are endless; users have a flexible and customisable software system in place which can be adapted to perfectly suit their business’ needs, while also increasing the profitability and efficiency of the business.

 

EFACS E/8 is a browser-based solution, and is in real-time, which allows users to have up-to-date information on stock levels, scheduling and CRM. By having a single-data input, efficiency is once again increased as repetitive work is eliminated as is having duplicate information stored. All of the EFACS E/8 modules are fully integrated so one solution can cover the widest possible range of business functions.

 

EFACS E/8 is a business solution that applies to many different types of company. For example, it satisfies the requirements of discrete manufacturers from automotive, aerospace and electronics companies, who have strict requirements for traceability and engineering change management. It is also suitable for high volume schedule-driven component manufacturers who require lean manufacturing techniques to reduce work-in-progress and to provide Just-in-Time performance.

 

Established in 2009, Profitsflow has built a reputation as an expert ERP solution provider to Ireland’s manufacturing and field service markets.  From our Arklow, Co. Wicklow base we provide a full sales, implementation, development and ongoing technical support service to all of our customers throughout the island of Ireland and beyond.  As an end-to-end solution provider, our clients benefit from the fact that we are a local resource with a wealth of experience implementing our products in their industry. In 2017 we opened our second office in Wexford and have further expansion planned into the medium term.

 

To learn more about Profitsflow and EFACS click here

 

Follow us on Social Media

Facebook

Twitter

LinkedIn

Published in blog

It was a successful morning at the Profitsflow ERP Information Morning, held on Thursday, March 22nd in the Wexford Enterprise Centre. This event had originally been planned for March 8th but due to the snow was postponed for 2 weeks.

 

Companies from a variety of industries met and a brief introduction to Profitsflow and EFACS E/8 was given by Profitsflow MD, Tadhg Henderson. After a short coffee break, the group reconvened and discussed the EFACS solution in greater depth, while also focusing on field service modules within the software.

 

The new EFACS Mobile Solution was of great interest to attendees, bringing a whole new range of benefits to EFACS customers. The Field Service handheld devices were also a particular point of interest for those in the sector due to the easy-to-use interface and the realtime recording, which can benefit the field service agents and also those in the office for recording.

 

An informative and engaging morning was had, with participants gaining expert knowledge in the world of ERP.

 

For more information on how your company can benefit from the implementation of the EFACS ERP solution, contact us here

 

Don’t forget to follow us on social media:

Facebook

LinkedIn

Twitter

Published in blog
Monday, 26 February 2018 11:09

Profitsflow Information Morning - March 2018

The first stop in our 2018 Information Morning Series is in our new office in the Wexford Enterprise Centre on Thursday March 22nd.  The event promises to be an informative morning, giving attendees a full view of the EFACS solution and the opportunity to get a comprehensive understanding of the software and its benefits.   

Published in blog
Monday, 26 February 2018 11:04

Irish ERP Market Survey 2018

 

Here at Profitsflow, we love setting ourselves new challenges; so for this quarter, our task is to compile the Irish ERP Market Report for Q1 2018.

 

Published in blog

 

The largest industry in the world, the food and beverage industry is also one which is extremely regulated and requires full traceability, a task made easy with the EFACS E/8 ERP solution. Companies within the food and beverage sector require tailored solutions, in order to fit their exact requirements, with EFACS E/8 it is achievable as the software is fully customisable, suiting precise needs and requirements for an individual company. Easy customisation of EFACS means that familiar user friendly terminology can be used; works orders can become cooks plans, bills of materials become ingredients lists and routings become recipes.

 

Published in blog

 

The electronics industry is faced with the most dynamic challenges of any industry. With fierce global competition these firms must compete with how rapidly they can develop and launch new products, especially when they are faced with constant change. In order to be competitive and effective, the firm must incorporate change as a normal business procedure. Implementing a highly-flexible ERP solution can help make some of these day-to-day challenges a little bit easier and therefore creating a more efficient workplace.

 

Published in blog
Tuesday, 20 February 2018 14:46

Benefits of EFACS E/8 in the Chemical Industry

 

Today’s chemical manufacturers and distributors are facing many modern challenges encompassing compliance and legal hurdles and their own software infrastructure; outdated business software can slowly damage even the most healthy of businesses.

 

Published in blog
Friday, 16 February 2018 11:09

Benefits of ERP in Field Service

 

Eagle Field Service provides an end-to-end solution that enables companies to achieve increased efficiency and customer service, maximising profits and building competitive advantage.

 

Published in blog
Friday, 16 February 2018 09:22

Benefits of EFACS for the Engineering Sector

Exel’s EFACS E/8 is thoroughly invaluable to the engineering sector, and Profitsflow’s Irish customers are reaping the benefits. Each client is able to respond to their specific market pressures with the assistance and flexibility of the EFACS integrated manufacturing system, irrespective of whether they need to manufacture bespoke items, prototypes, tooling or products with high or low volumes. Effective product lifecycle management can be achieved using EFACS Engineering Change Controls  and its fully integrated mechanisms for serial number and batch traceability.

 

Published in blog
Thursday, 15 February 2018 10:43

Benefits of EFACS E/8 in the Agri Sector

 
Due to the industrialisation of agriculture, there is a requirement for high efficiency in order to remain competitive. Each farmer has a specific set of needs and requirements and therefore systems needs to be in place which can be customisable and fit in with the individual unique requirements.

 

Published in blog

In this article on the future of ERP for manufacturing and by extension field service, we catch up with Tony Pottle of Exel Computer Systems.  Well-known as an industry expert, Tony has worked in the ERP field providing solutions to the needs of businesses across the UK, Ireland and further afield for in excess of twenty years.

Published in blog

2016 was a great year for us here at Profitsflow.  We welcomed a variety of new customers to our growing family of EFACS E/8 ERP and Eagle Field Service users here in Ireland.  We won the ERP HeadtoHead Best Vendor Award in October.  But the biggest driver of change for us was the launch of our ERP Information Days in June.  This year we are expanding the number of events to 4 with April 4th seeing the first Galway ERP Information Day.

Published in blog
Friday, 16 December 2016 14:52

ERP Information Days 2017

In 2016 we launched our ERP Information Days, with two half day sessions targeted at companies at various stages of the selection process looking at a new ERP software solution.  In 2017, we are taking the event nationwide, with four dates in Cork, Galway, Dublin and Belfast allowing manufacturing and field service companies throughout the country the opportunity to see the Award Winning EFACS E/8 at a location convenient to them.

Published in blog
Friday, 16 December 2016 14:22

ERP Information Days 2019

EFACS E/8: Award Winning, fully integrated ERP solution for manufacturing and field service.  See it live in 2019, continuing with

Shannon: 14th March 2019

Published in Features
Tuesday, 04 October 2016 14:52

September ERP Information Day Report

On September 27th, the Louis Fitzgerald Hotel, Dublin was the venue for the latest in our series of ERP Information Days.  With Tony Pottle of Exel Computer Systems in attendance to launch the latest release of EFACS, version 8.6, the event was well received and all agreed that it was a success.

Published in blog
Wednesday, 27 July 2016 13:44

June ERP Information Day Report

Our latest ERP Information Day, held at our Arklow, Co. Wicklow HQ, was well received by all.  With fifteen attendees representing ten separate firms all looking at their options for ERP, the event proved to be an informative and very useful one for all involved. 

Published in blog

This is an all too familiar saying to us here at Profitsflow.  Over the years we have had companies come to us looking for information and understanding that they really need to get ERP up and running.  They then go through various periods of activity followed by long breaks.  These "active" periods are typically grouped

Published in blog
Friday, 18 March 2016 16:11

When is the best time to implement ERP?

This is a question that arises time and time again. If you find yourself asking the question, it is worth considering all of the variables. The answer will probably not be what you expect it to be. Why? Because implementing ERP will take quite an amount of time, usually at least a number of months. Therefore what may appear to be the right time will only likely be a point or a period of time during the process. Therefore it is important to firstly understand how long the project will take, then schedule key aspects or milestones during the implementation period to occur at the optimal time for the business.

Many people have an objective of implementing a new system during a quiet period of business activity. While as a strategy this appears to be sensible, it is important to remember that this quiet period may also be when cashflow is at its tightest. That may not be when you want to see lots of consultancy bills! Some factors to consider:

Seasonality
Most businesses follow seasonal patterns. There are peaks and troughs in trade and production requirements that are to some level predictable from one year to the next. It does not make sense, for example, to go live with a new system at the busiest time of the year. It might make sense however to select the system at this time.

Holidays
It is incredible how many system selection projects are put on hold "until after the holidays" - be it Summer, Christmas, Easter or whatever. The reality is, all you have to do at this point is review the options and make a decision. Whether that is done before, during or after the holiday period in question doesn't make a difference. Do it before the holidays and the elements you have no input in (e.g. prepping hardware, vendors processing orders, scheduling consultants) can happen during your downtime.

Planning
You have a project that will take many months to deliver. In co-ordination with the vendor, map out a plan that takes account of all of the considerations - individual's holidays, busy and quiet business periods, and cashflow cycles. Devise a dated implementation that sees you going live with the new system when it makes sense. And the all important payments schedule - when do you pay for consulting, licences, maintenance. Can this be phased over the duration of the implementation?

Published in blog
Wednesday, 04 November 2015 10:23

Selecting ERP in 2016? Here's our top 5 tips

If you have read some of the numerous ERP implementation disaster stories online, or even worse experienced it for yourself first hand, you may be thinking that embarking on a new ERP project for your business is a minefield and that it should be put off until the last possible moment.  However, in practice, where this approach is taken it is often left too late and the business suffers badly as a result of inefficient operation, lack of data and poor visibility.

Where budgets permit, bringing in external expertise in the form of a selection consultant is generally advisable, however for the SME this is not always possible.  In addition, available internal resource to commit to the project can be limited leading to a less than ideal selection process and ultimately impacting the system implementation and timeline.

Published in blog

If you’ve ever been through the process of selecting new business software systems for your engineering company, you’ll know that it is a daunting process.  ERP for Engineering is what we do at Profitsflow.

We have worked with many Irish manufacturers, from precision engineering to sheet metal fabrication, on to the high tech sectors of aerospace and automotive.  Also catered for are businesses feeding into the supply chain of these verticals, including electronics and parts manufacturing, amongst others.

Published in Webinars

A good enterprise resource planning system needs many different moving parts working together to ensure success. Those with ERP experience know that having the support of top executives and getting them to buy into a change or upgrade early on is crucial. Complete and current documentation of business practices is needed on a practical level as well. This makes sure that the ERP partner working with a business is helping to select the right platform and the correct components to boost efficiency and visibility and improve return on investment.

Training and education is another key for a good, useful and long-lived ERP system. Here's a run-down of concepts that businesses need to focus on to make sure adoption and knowledge among employees is as strong as possible:

Consider all the parts of ERP learning: A great ERP partner will help provide the technical education that employees need to access and use a system competently and offer ongoing support and troubleshooting. What an ERP partner can't do is encourage adoption and understanding in the long term. This task necessarily falls on the managers, executives and ERP transition team at a company. Businesses need to start this process before a new system is close to being ready for use. Simply put, major upgrades or an entirely new ERP platform can cause concern and frustration among employees. After all, they have to learn new and different processes, make changes to daily routines and deal with the additional training efforts potentially taking up part of their already busy schedules.

Because of the potential for employees to view the addition of a new ERP system as a negative because of the perception that it creates more work, business leaders have to show their staff the positives of a new system. Acknowledge that there will be more work in the short term, but streamlined workflows, better visibility into business data and other advantages will make their jobs easier for years to come after the new platform has been installed. This is where the implementation team and company leadership need to understand the difference between technical training and employee education related to the benefits of a new system on an individual level. Generating employee buy-in makes it much easier to get the most out of ERP and start realising ROI.

Make sure there's enough time: ERP education can take up a lot of time between technical training and convincing employees to embrace the change. The implementation team at a business needs to make sure that they've built in enough time for all the educational efforts needed. Trying to squeeze training activities into a short period of time or overloading employees is a good way to sour the general opinion of a new system and make adoption and successful daily use much bigger battles than they have to be. This is a relatively minor consideration that can be handled by creating an educational schedule, but can be overlooked in the face of larger or more immediate concerns.

Know that not everyone learns the same way: People have the most effective learning experiences in different ways - some people learn best through visuals, others through hearing and still more from reading or taking notes. Tech Target pointed out that a lack of educational options means it's harder for some staff members to learn. Businesses need to use their resources to provide things like cheat sheets and instructions, hands-on learning demonstrations and other supplemental materials and events. These are the materials that will get the message across to employees regardless of their preferred learning styles.

Published in blog
Wednesday, 22 April 2015 00:00

10 Key Criteria for ERP Selection

The 10 key criteria successful manufacturing companies apply when buying or replacing an IT Manufacturing System: A Brief Guide to Software Selection

This article is for anyone considering the purchase of an ERP/MRP system in manufacturing, whatever the size of your organisation. As gathered from our experience in ERP implementation, it presents a short guide to the top ten considerations used by successful manufacturers when buying or replacing an IT system for manufacturing. This article is intended to share our knowledge of what we see as key factors to take into account prior to selection.

The value or return on investment of integrated manufacturing and finance systems to manufacturers is well documented but principally includes both ‘quantitative’ and ‘qualitative’ benefits. These can be used to build the business case required to justify the expenditure on ERP. They include:

• Superior Efficiency: Increased annual stock turnover due to the ability to rotate stock more efficiently throughout the year, as excess stock situations are avoided and material purchasing is strictly tied into production schedules.

• Reduction in Annual Stockholding Of Between 10 – 15%: By tying stock requirements into demand (in the form of sales orders and production schedules) streamlined MRP Planning can reduce the average value of stock held by between 10-15% in the first year of implementation.

• Improved Liquidity: Significantly improved cash flow positions, through a) Purchase Invoice Matching functionality that allows only those supplier invoices to be paid that can be traced to original purchase orders and material receipts and b) the ability to start invoice collection immediately upon sales order dispatch.

• Reduction in Manufacturing Costs: Direct and Indirect Labour Costs decline as staff become productive, spending less time spent waiting for overdue raw material shipments to arrive; some staff can be retrained or reassigned to more productive roles; production bottlenecks can be avoided by viewing potential conflicts ahead of time ensuring no delay in customer order shipments.
• Improved Productivity: A single central repository of information for order processing from start to finish eliminates duplication of data.

• Real Time Reporting: Unlimited custom reporting potential using your own data exists, meaning users spends less time having to go searching for information.

With the general pickup in IT spending continuing into 2015, manufacturers considering an ERP system now should consider these very real and significant benefits that accrue.

A recent positive impact in running an ERP has been the ability to allow Irish manufacturers counteract the threat of low cost manufacturing centres coming from Asia. By providing new and innovative ways of interacting with customers via Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software and techniques, ERP and CRM together can allow firms to differentiate themselves along customer service factors and help offset the impact of firms in low cost manufacturing centres relying heavily on price.

MRP II / ERP systems now scale to the smallest companies driving competitiveness, and bottom line growth. This article discusses then how to choose a product and vendor that will suit you.

10. Clearly Define The Business Requirement.

The first step in the selection of an ERP Systems is for the management and staff of a company to take the time to agree the objectives of the new system. For instance “Do Goods Received update stock lists? Do people even log Goods Received so that accounts can settle with supplier seamlessly?” When your requirements are clear then decide those that are “Vital” or “Nice to have”. Defining everything as essential will limit your choice and drive up the end price exponentially. This will also give you a false impression of a systems suitability. If a system has all the bells and whistles that’s, great but will you ever be in a position to use them. Don’t overcomplicate your system just because you can.

One well established firm recommends that you don’t specify any changes to your new system for the first year of use following the “GO LIVE” date, forcing users to get used to the new system. After that the specified changes list can reduce by 85%.

Knowing your requirements in advance of speaking with vendors is going to make the choice a great deal easier. The vendor will therefore concentrate on the solution as opposed to teasing the information out of you.

 

9. Choose A Solution Appropriate In Size To Your Organisation and your Manufacturing Process.

It may be stating the obvious but it is paramount to choose a solution that is right size technology for your organisation - as opposed to one which has been unnecessarily scaled down or ‘hammered’ to fit. Choosing the right fit will result in less cost over the project’s lifetime. Some inscrutable vendors have been known to give the software away at cost, only to make up for it by charging a small fortune in service days!


8. Value The Investment Over 3 -5 Years For A True Total Cost of Ownership

Do you want to be locked into a system two years from now with no way of making even the slightest change unless you pay for expensive custom work every time from the authors? Probably not! Ask your vendor how easy is it to make changes to the system once it’s installed. Some products allow the customers to make changes to the system without recourse to the authors for expensive custom development work. Others do not. This can have a considerable impact on total cost of ownership (TCO).

Always ask for an indication upfront of year 2 and beyond maintenance charges on both software and hardware for a true comparison of vendors. (See also point 4 about whether the software will work if you are not on annual maintenance). Identify how maintenance charges are calculated. This will allow you to accurately forecast running costs in the future more accurately.

Find out too if it can connect easily with existing legacy systems or even just your existing MS Excel or Autocad/Solid Works. The ability to connect and transfer data to or from an unrelated system. Eg. Temp monitoring system for fridges.

 

7. Find Out What Is The Likely Upgrade Path For Software.

This is one area often overlooked in the selection process. In choosing a solution today, will you be liable for upgrading to a newer version two years from now? In addition, you may find that any existing versions of any third party products required to run with the ERP application may also need upgrading, entailing additional expense here too. What are the software developer’s plans for this current version? Is the software written in a commercially available development language which is still being enhanced and supported by the supplier? This can greatly increase the cost of maintenance to a system if there aren’t many experienced individuals around to carry out the work in a few years. Don’t buy a system that will be a dinosaur in a few years time.

 

6. Invest in a Dedicated Server(s) to Run the ERP Application

Hardware prices have continued to slide, making the case for a dedicated ERP server considerably more attractive. It has been our experience that companies looking to save a few euro by not investing in adequate IT hardware end up paying more in poor system performance, compatibility problems between ERP and other applications, and general system crashes. ERP can be a considerable hog on server resources to the extent than other office applications can suffer considerably – so invest in a dedicated server! Take the opportunity to upgrade network components if required. A fast server with a slow network connection is a waste of money.


5. Arrange a site visit to an existing customer of the vendor(s).

One of the surest ways of cutting through all the ‘vendor rhetoric’ is to arrange a site visit
to an existing customer and talk to existing users. They are in best position to tell you how it has gone. Look for a clearly defined payback and benefits accrued from running the system. Do they match what the vendor claims? Go prepared with a list of items you want to see and a list of questions you need answered. This is your chance to see the system in action, make sure you see the areas of the system relevant to your company. If possible agree an agenda in advance.


4. Will The Software Work If I Am Not On Maintenance?

Maintenance agreements function somewhat like an insurance contract between vendor and customer, providing access to seasoned product technical experts on issues that the customer’s own staff may not be able to resolve once implementation is complete. Some ERP vendors may tie the ongoing usage of their software in with the issue of whether or not you hold a current software maintenance agreement. In other words it may not be yours to actually own, and if you are not on maintenance the software may refuse to function. Other ERP solutions are sold in perpetuity – i.e. their continued operation is not tied in to whether or not you are currently on maintenance.

In addition, try to find out about the proximity of local technical support staff. Does the vendor have a fully staffed local presence or is it merely just an administrative office? What happens if you require technical support on site at short notice?


3. Database – Proprietary or Standard?

ERP applications that require proprietary databases to run can prove expensive to maintain and lead to difficulty retaining the knowledge base in house to support them. Most IT staff will want to keep their skills profile current, and introducing proprietary non standard databases may encounter resistance that would otherwise act as a hindrance to a successful implementation.



2. Client Server or Web – which should I choose?

A big shift is occurring in the industry, as more ERP solutions are becoming web enabled. In the long term this has the potential to be even more significant than the emergence of NT Server Software over a decade ago. The benefits of deploying a web enabled ERP system lie in the twin areas of cost and time – time in respect of deployment times, from start to ‘Go-Live’ date, can be up to 15% faster as measured in service days, compared to traditional client server technologies; and cost in that web applications allow functional changes to be made much more easily, resulting in less time and less expense overall.

Web applications also offer the long term benefit of technological independence – i.e. they are as confined to, or restricted to work with a limited set of preferred technologies - as would be the case with client server technologies. A technology independent solution therefore can easily be ‘future proofed’ over time. Manufacturers on these systems have more freedom to choose an optimal software & hardware configuration to run ERP, but keep in mind that the system itself may operate best under a particular flavour or type of technology too. Web based systems have the added advantage of substantially lower maintenance for your IT personnel. No complicated software needs to be installed on the users PC. They simply connect through their internet browser. This can also allow your IT dept to get extra life form PC’s as the system requirements will be less.

 

1. Allow Enough Time For Implementation and Training

A crucial area this one. Whichever ERP tool you choose, you will need the assistance of an experienced ERP implementer. Search for one with a good track record here. Don’t be fooled into believing you can save a few euros by reducing the number of training days. Why have an expensive investment go to waste if you’re not willing to devote time & effort in getting your people trained up? Granted you can spread this phase of the implementation out over several weeks or months depending on complexity, but if you’re really serious you’ll want to budget for this appropriately.

It’s much more effective towards the successful adoption of any new technology that key system users are involved from early on in the project. Try to avoid leaving the implementation in the hands of a concentrated few until the very end – just 4 weeks before go-live! During the implementation, regular review meeting should be held to inform key personnel of progress and prevent the implementation turning into a last minute effort to get everyone on board.

This article then has presented some of the key considerations that successful manufacturers adopt when evaluating IT manufacturing systems. We believe that they will prove useful in their application during the selection process. Following these guidelines will result in a more ‘enlightened’ buying decision so that the final selection of a product can take place in confidence.

 

Published in blog

This Blog details how investing in ERP software can improve your Company’s decision making process.

We buy tools to make products and to increase the work capacity, we install machines and for designing and selling products, we hire people; because we know they are needed for the business growth. Information Technology and software has become a basic need in our day to day life and when it comes to run a business, whether a small or medium sized, one way or the other we are dependent on them.  As long as you can manage spreadsheets and other basic software like Sage for invoicing, account management, you avoid spending capital on other software or technology to materialise the similar need. (That can make your work much easier and quicker).

Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software has become very popular among large Industries as they use to run their businesses through it. If you think ERP Software is not affordable or you are not aware of its real benefits then this article will help you to know why ERP is real value for the business.

It is important to highlight a few things about ERP and its utilisation in the business process. ERP is business management software which is developed to manage typical enterprise; it is an integrated application that improves the business decision by creating information from every part available to throughout your business operations. Company’s use to handle and store data from every level of business, starting from product, planning cost development, invoicing, accounting, marketing and sales order entry, manufacturing, shipping and payment, financial, warehousing, payroll. ERP software has the collective source of master data which tracks the record of customers / buyers, vendors, product bill, manufacturing work processes and many other records. By maintaining such records help company to improve consistently with the same set of Information. Most of the small sized companies are used to work on Sage and spreadsheets but as the business grows these software starts impacting business results in actual ways which affects the bottom line i.e. lost data, missed shipments, invoicing and so on.

Although Sage provides solutions to many small businesses and it is the most users friendly software but it has certain limitations and still far from being integrated ERP with proper control of auditing and scale the end to end business operations. 

Here are more benefits of ERP:

  • It uplifts sales performance.
  • It improves the visibility of organisation’s financial growth.
  • It helps in managing business operations.
  • It reduces labour costs.
  • ERP improves product’s delivery on time.
  • By consistent business processes and polices throughout the organization it improves customer services and profitability.
  • It upgrades control and planning record

 

ERP software is cost effective, affordable and can be easily customised according to the nature of business i.e. General Manufacturing, Retail, CPG, Life Sciences, Process, Distribution, and Service Industries.

Published in blog

Profitsflow.com is pleased to inform that it’s technology partner, Nottingham based Exel Computer Systems plc, celebrates 30 years in operation this year. Established in 1985, Exel is a leading force in the provision of integrated business solutions for manufacturing companies and field service providers.  Profitsflow.com is proud to work in conjunction with the innovative firm, serving an increasingly diverse customer base, which includes medium and large manufacturing and field service companies. As authors of the EFACS E/8, Eagle Field Service and Eagle Facilities Management systems Exel and Profitsflow.com are well positioned to assist their customers to achieve competitive advantage through the deployment of a state-of-the-art business solution.

It was back in 1985 that Dr John Ellis, Exel's founder and current Chairman, established Exel Computer Systems having recognised a distinct market need for capacity planning systems whilst working on research projects at PERA. This led to the development of the first version of EFACS, a Unix and Informix based software solution for capacity planning and manufacturing. Over the last 30 years EFACS has grown from a capacity planning and production solution into a fully integrated comprehensive business solution, incorporating full ERP, Financials, CRM, Field Service, Document Management, Business Intelligence, Workflow, and Mobile Applications.

Profitsflow.com’s emphasis they place on continued product development and understanding real business needs through continuous support of, and close partnerships with their client base. In Ireland, Profitsflow.com provides local expert support and development services to a number of companies on Exel’s platform.  These companies span many diverse industries. It is testimony to our commitment to their customers that all of our earliest customers have upgraded to the latest version in order to benefit from our investment in technology and the new features available. 

Published in blog
Tuesday, 17 February 2015 00:00

ERP Industry Progress

    Companies looking to improve their links across various functions, such as inventory control, accounting, and human resources may find the answer lies in ERP software. Enterprise Resource Planning systems allow businesses to improve their operations infrastructure, enabling businesses to share information and make decisions more quickly across multiple departments.

    Enterprise Resource Planning has come a long way in recent years and significant progress has been made to modern ERP business solutions. Many Companies spending for ERP projects is expected to keep growing.  52 percent of Companies plan to invest in significant IT infrastructure and computer upgrades. Some software providers are already making evident changes to their ERP platform design to address such concepts as that of automated business landscape transformation

    With ERP investments on the rise, some experts have suggested the technology will significantly impact some industries more than others. According to an accounting and advisory firm, the Manufacturing market, in particular, will be affected by cloud-based ERP software. The company went so far as to say that manufacturers not leveraging this technology will remain stagnant. Cloud-based ERP is not expected to just benefit large manufacturers either. In fact, small and medium-sized companies are already integrating their ERP business solutions with collaboration technologies, analytics and mobile applications to stay ahead of the game.

     While such platforms are considered ideal for going head-to-head with competitors, Manufacturers with cloud ERP systems can also establish themselves as industry leaders. One to watch for the Food Manufacturing and Engineering industries across Ireland.

 

Published in blog
Friday, 13 February 2015 00:00

6 Common ERP Implementation Mistakes

We have all heard about ERP implementation projects that have failed, gone on long past the planned implementation time, or gone way over budget.  In such circumstances, it is all too easy to blame the vendor or the selection team.  However, normally the fault in these cases lies in the planning and execution of the plan prior to system selection and purchase.  Detailed below are six of the most common mistakes found in ERP implementation projects.

 

1: Poor Planning/Explanation of New ERP

Planning is absolutely necessary if you want your ERP project to succeed. You simply can't Wing ERP implementation. Companies that explain up front the business case for upgrading, the benefits to the company and employees, and any changes in the end user experience are the most successful. The software will work, the hardware will work, but it doesn't matter unless the users buy in. There is nothing more powerful than user perception, and if they decide the system doesn't work, it won't. If you feel you do not have the in-house capability to properly evaluate ERP systems, consider hiring an experienced third-party, vendor-neutral consultant, who has experience implementing ERP solutions at companies in your industry.

2: Not understanding/Using key features of New ERP Software

Without knowing features of the new ERP Software, companies miss opportunities to automate business processes, complete functions faster, and meet business objectives. In addition upgrades, enhancements, and maintenance are more costly, and less likely to succeed. Create a master list with all features, tracking usage, and periodically reviewing the list to determine which features are being used and which are the most helpful. This knowledge catalogue can be used to train new employees, write test scripts, and assist with audit, compliance, and reporting requirements. The only way to determine for sure is to load test the system. The most accurate way to load test a system is with load testing software and scripts and with real users. If you just use scripts, you won't see the effects of user mistakes, and if you just use people, you can't really simulate the effect of batch jobs and EDI. But if you can't do both, pick one and run with it.

3: Not having the right people on the ERP implementation team

Sometimes Companies do not bring the right people together from the very start of an ERP implementation. Companies should focus on gathering key participants from across the staff force, from finance, operations, manufacturing, purchasing, and the warehouse, in addition to IT staff. The benefits: employees who are actively engaged with the ERP implementation, who have an investment in getting it right, right from the start. A lot of customers think they can save money by eliminating the Project Manager and doing it themselves. For an ERP upgrade, this could be fatal. A consultant Project Manager's focus is on upgrades so they know any pitfalls. Navigating these pitfalls ahead of time will make all the difference in an on-time/on-budget ERP Upgrade.

 

4: Not investing in training up Employees on ERP

A lack of proper training is one of the most common reasons that ERP projects fail, and it can also result in employees resenting the new system because they don't understand it. Making sure employees have a chance to become comfortable with the new system before it goes live will do wonders for your chances at ERP success. If you make training and frequent communication with users a top priority, it will hugely benefit the ERP implementation. Classroom training and a Knowledge Vault of recorded videos to help employees to adapt to new ERP Software will go a long way in a successful ERP implementation strategy.

5. Not performing a Mock Go Live of New ERP System

A mock Go Live is the time when you find out whether everything will go as planned ahead of time. It is also the point when you capture timings for all the different Go Live tasks. If you don't practice under the same conditions you'll have when you plan to go live (e.g., if Go Live is on a weekend, mock Go Live needs to be on a weekend), you will run into issues that you never planned for, such as: Do I have access to everything on a weekend? Will we run into backups or maintenance windows? Are the offices open? Some of these may sound trivial, but when you are under pressure and have spent thousands on a new system, the last thing you want is to be delayed because you missed something that was easy to catch.

6. Not having a maintenance strategy

By not applying maintenance, their systems will quickly become obsolete (from a technical perspective) as will their business processes. With improvements in installation technology, customers will experience only limited disruption when implementing support packs. ERP upgrades don't happen every day or every year. So it's important to utilise the most experienced technology consultants to keep your system running during the upgrade. If you're like most companies, you probably have several consultants and internal people working on the project. If it is down all the time, no work is done and money is being wasted. Experienced consultants will know the ERP system and will keep it performing during the ERP upgrade.

Published in blog

Unable to get data from your system

Your business needs to make important decisions, Poor reporting capabilities can delay a business and waste valuable time in improving the business.  Limited reporting capability can lead to a poor user experience which inhibits roll out and adoption of new products. Poor reporting capability also relates to vendor enablement - usually there is no simple way of getting all your suppliers on the system. And poor data which is heavily reliant on the data provided by suppliers.

 Old, “clunky”, unintuitive screens

Today’s global business world is more complex and interconnected than ever, constantly posing new challenges on productivity and business agility. There is therefore a growing demand among companies for enterprise applications that are intuitive and easy to use. ERP providers must improve their software in order to meet these demands.

  Lack of visibility of customer data

Nowadays, it’s all about Customer Relationship Management (CRM).  Do you have it? Is there effective communication with your business customers? Can your business specifically target markets with a marketing/email campaign? Is there inadequate customer contact and call centre support? Are there inadequate service options offered to your customers?

  Old systems cost more to maintain

Old ERP systems can take away the innovation from your company’s IT budget. How much of your business IT budget is devoted to innovation rather than maintenance? The mobile workforce can’t perform efficiently with an outdated ERP System.  Old ERP doesn’t satisfy the appetite for real-time information. Old ERP systems generally make reporting an onerous and error-prone exercise – leaving organisations to manually generate reports and create budget or forecast spreadsheets. To compete, businesses need modern ERP designed for today’s needs.

 Lack of or Poor support

Very often older products go “end of life” with no backup support available.  Sometimes, support can be made available via freelancers, old distribution agents for the product, or groups of individuals coming together with the objective of providing a support service in return for a secondary income.  Do you really want to put your business on the line?  These people may not be available when most needed.  And for those cases where there still is “official” support, it is often the case that one or two “seasoned” support consultants are retained to service the few remaining clients on that product or version.  New entrants to the support team are only trained on current products.  This can mean increased cost, lack of availability when most needed, and ultimately longer down time.

Published in blog