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Do More with Less! Drive productivity with ERP Software in the New Economy

Given the turbulent economy in 2009, companies were forced to do more with less, be more deliberate with IT budgets, and demand a higher ROI from their enterprise software initiatives. To my surprise, while many large companies have been cutting IT budgets in 2009, companies in the small and mid-sized sector have been investing large amounts of their budgets in ERP solutions and I believe this strategy will pay off. Here’s why…

ERP software drives productivity by leveraging an integrated framework making it possible to “do more with less, be more deliberate with IT budgets, and demand a higher ROI”. Investment in software isn’t always an easy undertaking during a turbulent economy, but if you step back and look at the big picture, it’s an essential move if you want to come out of the downturn ahead of the competition. A study by the McGraw-Hill Laboratory shows that “companies who continued strategic spending during a recession outperformed non-spenders and experienced revenue growth of 275 percent during the first full year of recovery.” For example, in the Order Central implementation of the Dynamics ERP for the Microsoft Business Solutions division of Microsoft – the ERP implementation was able to help drive cost savings of U.S. $2 million a year in reduced IT support requirements and U.S.$1.5 million in reduced staffing requirements. That is approximately $3.5 million of savings a year! No small change even for a giant like Microsoft.

So how did these savings come into play? There is no single magic bullet. It is a combination of reduction of many manual processes that lead to higher productivity. For example at Microsoft Business Solutions a report that used to take 2 person days of effort is now produced automatically by the system in minutes. Deb Remboldt, Accounting Services Manager at MBS validates this. According to her, "All our worldwide partners now have online access to their statements and invoices. Through this online functionality, they can advise our credit and collections team on what invoices they are paying and which credit notes to allocate online. This functionality has already streamlined this process significantly and simplifies this interaction.”

According to Mary Foley in a recent ERP for Small Business article on Technology.Inc.com, “The time is ripe for small and mid-size businesses to adopt enterprise resource planning (ERP) applications." There are more options than ever targeting the small and mid-size business sector. ERP used to be a multi-million dollar project. It no longer is. By leveraging pre-built configurations that partners like Ignify bring to the table and leveraging the ERP creatively to use more out of the box functionality a sub million dollar ERP implementation can be a reality for a full organizational cross-functional implementation that can span financials, supply chain and inventory optimization.

It may just be the best time to advance your company into an ERP solution that’s right for you. What are you waiting for?

Bhavesh Ashani is the Vice President of Ignify. Ignify is a technology provider of ERP, CRM, and eCommerce software solutions to businesses and public sector organizations. Ignify is a global Microsoft Dynamics Inner Circle Partner and ranked in the top 1% of Microsoft Dynamics partners. Ignify has been included as the fastest growing business in North America for 3 years in a row by Deloitte, Inc Magazine and Entrepreneur Magazine.

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