Like any recipe, it’s important to combine the right ingredients to create a good dish. In ERP, Mobile has become one such element that cannot be ignored. The number of mobile Internet users in India is expected to grow to 314 million by the end of 2017, according to a KPMG report. This is significant because it means organizations that depend on literate/semi-literate workforces can leverage the mobile to significantly improve productivity, without a huge training cost.
In fact, the mobile phone properly integrated into the business organization will have a positive impact in every aspect of the business. Many businesses overcame bottlenecks by integrating mobile into various parts of their operations. Here are some instances of how mobile integration can be a game changer for your business:
- Anytime, anywhere access: One of the biggest benefits of having a well-integrated mobile ERP solution is the access to real-time information across employees, locations and even time zones. For wholesale stores dealing in fabrics and fashion materials, creating an application that gave salespersons visibility to stock across the company helped boost sales. So when a customer would want a quantity that was not available at that location, the salesperson could simply check for it at other branches or the warehouse. Since the stock position was calculated in real-time, they could better serve their customers.
- Centralized Control: Small manufacturers with multiple outlets often struggle to control different aspects of their businesses. One of our clients faced this problem due to his involvement in different businesses, in different locations. Since he could physically be present in one location at one point, he found it delayed approvals at other units, costing him business and in some cases clients. He also found, he could neither travel to grow his businesses or for leisure as he needed to be present for day-to-day operational requirement such as purchase order approvals. The solution to this, was an app that allowed him to travel freely and yet keep control of his business Creating an approval mechanism within the app, sped up the process and empowered the businessman to have total control of his business units from any place.
- Real-time data: Be it finished goods, raw material purchase, payments or receivables employees have access to up to the minute information which empowers them to do their job better, faster. A company partly solved its unmanageable accounts receivables issues, when its accountants started landing up at client offices with latest information on their mobiles. They would no longer have to depend on the client to work out the details, or carry physical files. The latest position was just a click of a button away.
- Inventory Management: Helping a steel cutting facility, eliminate dispatch errors by empowering its largely untrained workforce with mobile phones. The workers were trained to verify the code for each dispatch against the job order and then physically scan each unit that was being loaded for dispatch. This ensured the right batches would be sent out every time. Any discrepancy in loading would immediately send a warning to the supervisor. Using this technique we saved on loading time and reduced dispatch errors. As a further safety redundancy the security staff was trained at the location not to let any truck through unless the dispatch order showed a green light on their mobile, when they scanned it. Anything else and they would call up the designated authority A similar solution was deployed, for a paints distributor, who was unable to execute his marketing strategy due to dispatch errors. The mobile solution got rid of the errors, resulting in a successful marketing campaign that helped establish his brand in a competitive market.
- Cost Effective: In almost all use cases we found the mobile to be both the most efficient as well as cost effective solution. The cost of customization is lower therefore resulting in quicker ROI to the businesses concerned. For example we used mobiles costing below Rs 5000 and a Wi-Fi router to eliminate dispatch errors in the warehouse. Integrating a commercial scanner and training the largely illiterate workforce to use it efficiently would have been far more expensive.
Integrating mobile with your ERP solutions makes smart business sense as can be seen in above mentioned cases. Our constant endeavor, is to create value for our customers with our innovative ERP solutions, the EPPS mobile ERP platform is one such example.
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