Professional services have a lot of different things to deal with, from handling clients with unique requirements to managing internal aspects such as finances and human resources. As a professional service entrepreneur, you certainly know how difficult it is to manage these processes separately, especially if you still depend on manual methods.
However, you won’t have to stress out anymore if you start using an ERP system. This software could be the right solution to overcome various challenges that you have been facing. Not only does an ERP system integrate all operations, but it also provides complete information on all aspects of your business.
Here are five main benefits of ERP software for professional services that you need to know.
1. Increased Efficiency & Productivity
ERP software automates various complex processes, from customer and financial management to staff management. It allows you to get any data in real-time with a high level of accuracy. You don’t need to worry about human errors or miscalculations (especially in financial statements). You will no longer have to spend operating costs on paper and stationery or individual apps.
Since processes are made simpler, efficiency and productivity can be significantly improved. Your employees will be able to perform optimally. You can focus more on profitable aspects rather than taking care of repetitive activities. This will ultimately result in increased revenue.
2. Better Customer Service
ERP helps you improve your customer service through modules like CRM and reservation management. However, not all ERP systems provide a reservation management module. Only complete ERP software comes with the module.
The CRM module enables you to maintain complete data of customers in a centralized repository. You can utilize it to check appointment schedules, monitor and update leads’ statuses, figure out whom to follow up with (and on what matters), and keep track of your sales progress. This will certainly help you understand your customers better so you will be able to provide the right solutions to them.
The reservation management module allows you to automate your booking process. It comes with a customer portal that allows customers to make reservations according to the available time slots. The system enables you to set up reminders and send them to your customers in advance. The system also provides an online payment gateway with multiple payment methods.
3. Enhanced Team Communication & Collaboration
ERP software integrates all processes within an organization and allows everyone in it to collaborate with each other through the same system. With centralized information, each division and even branch office can work together without interrupting each other.
The marketing team can provide the leads’ information they get from ads to the sales team through the CRM system. The sales team can inform the marketing team about leads’ qualifications so that the marketing team can focus more on effective lead sources. The finance department can find out expenses incurred by each division or staff without having to ask them directly. At the same time, the HR department can keep track of staff activities including their attendance, leave, working hours, reimbursement requests, and so on.
4. Greater Financial Visibility
Accounting is one of the most important aspects of any business, including professional services. ERP helps professional services gain greater financial visibility through real-time cash flow reports, allowing them to see the actual financial health of the business.
You are perhaps already familiar with financial statements, but you may haven’t completely seen all the facts yet. An ERP system allows you to figure out your profits and losses comprehensively, based on your business locations (if you own multiple worksites), your customers, your services and etc. This will help you understand your profit and loss sources better, so you can cut unnecessary expenses and spend your budget more wisely.
5. High Flexibility & Scalability
So you need a vacation, but there are a lot of appointments you have to manage? Or you’re dealing with clients from various countries with different languages and currencies? No problem! Because ERP software allows you to keep up with your business no matter where you are and serve clients from all over the world.
Cloud-based ERP software enables you to access real-time information from anywhere using any mobile device connected to the internet. You don’t need to be in your office to delegate tasks to your staff, track appointment schedules, or send invoices. Advanced ERP software also comes with features such as multi-currency and multi-language management so you can work with anyone with no boundaries.
A Guide to Successful ERP Implementation for Professional Services
To facilitate the ERP implementation process in your business, we have put together a few steps that you can follow:
- Understand your business needs and get your teams involved
- Conduct research on the cost of ERP software
- Provide some extra money if you need customization in your ERP system
- Meet a few ERP vendors that suit your business needs & budget
- Talk to a business software consultant if you find it hard to make a decision
- Make sure the ERP vendor provides full support during and after the deployment