Better financial decisions
For many businesses and executives, it’s so easy to fall into a data-driven rut, always using the same information points on which to base commercial actions writes David Jackman.
is the managing
director of Pronto Software.
Anew financial year is a great time to reassess the analytics you are using in your business for decision-making purposes. Often, there’s a host of information right in front of your eyes, which, if you’re working with the right software provider, can help make your business leaner, smarter and faster.
So this new financial year, why not step back and take some time to focus on how you could improve access to critical business information, no matter where your staff is working?
Fire up the sales team
Sales staff at various levels of seniority in a business require up-to-the-minute information to help them access current client details while on-site, close deals in shorter timeframes, and assist in driving revenue growth.
This new financial year is the time to make sure your sales team on the road can easily access thorough client information, as well as insights into previous meetings. Being able to access this information from wherever they are working, using a range of different devices, prior to a client or prospect meeting gives sales staff a real edge over competitors that can only find this information when they are at head office. Not to mention access to such key information at your fingertips energises sales staff with the confidence and arsenal required for almost any query or request.
Additionally for sales managers, it’s essential they have up-to-date data about revenues and margins for more accurate sales projections and pipelines. For example, it would be of great benefit if they can be instantly notified when a sales order has been transacted below the minimum gross profit percentage threshold or when a sales order has been put on hold, so corrective measures can be put in place promptly.
Financial insights at your fingertips
Having clear visibility of your business, with a consistent stream of information that you can trace and drill down, across the various departments, is critical to increase your agility and sustain your success, especially against the backdrop of an uncertain economy.
As you review your business, you might have started to understand the cost associated with double entry of data and poor data integrity. This can ring true particularly if you have multiple warehouses with different costs in each warehouse, or buy and sell in multiple currencies or have multiple operating entities that need to consolidate to a parent company.
So use this time to undertake an audit of the key data points your finance executives need to ensure it has a helicopter view of the financial performance of every unit of the business, from staff utilisation to sales revenue and margins. The right data can not only reduce the time it takes to produce monthly profit reports but also help your business concentrate on efficiency and future growth.
Support for people in the field
If your business has a team of technicians on the road, the ability to deliver the information they need anytime, anywhere is a huge competitive advantage.
Access to real-time information can help them stay connected to the back office and manage their day-to-day workload, particularly when there are unplanned events. Being able to easily capture parts used, timesheets, photos and signatures at the client site, reduces the time between doing the job and charging it will make a big impact on the bottom line.
So now is the time of year to look at what information your technical staff need while they are on the road, and whether your current systems are able to meet this need. If not, it’s worth reviewing whether your software really meets the needs of your business.
A superior Enterprise Resource Planning system integrated with business intelligence, mobile and analytics that can be customised to the niche needs of the organisation to provide staff all the information they need to do their job to the best of their abilities – no matter where they are in the world – is one of the most valuable assets a business can have today.
This new financial year think about what information key staff don’t currently have access to, and how you could provide them with this data, to help ensure your enterprise is making important decisions on the right basis.
Businesses that do this will be able to take advantage of new opportunities as they arise faster and fix problems more rapidly. Importantly, they will be able to embed a culture within the organisation in which actions are based on accurate, up-to-date facts, which is a mark of a company at the top of its game. David has more than 30 years business and technology experience spanning C-level roles, recognised as an expert in generating business value from IT investments. Since joining Pronto Software in 2000, David has doubled the company’s profits and expanded the business into new, international markets including the US, Canada and PNG. www.pronto.net.