Questions? Call us now at +1-888-344-2652
Agriculture is rapidly changing, with more change anticipated. Government policies and regulations are demanding more of food distributors, who in turn are requiring more of agricultural growers and processors in the form of transparency of information and improved communications between parties, and higher product quality and greater accountability and traceability.
What does this mean for growers and processors today?
By beginning to adopt greater integration and communications between systems across organizations along with new, smarter methodologies, it is possible to automate processes, improve accuracy, reduce costs, eliminate redundancies and duplicated data entry, and reallocate human resources to higher and better functions. The result of this is significantly improved quality, productivity and profitability.
An example includes the ability to automate the scheduling of deliveries from the farm to the processor, to auto detect the physical location of incoming vehicles and auto-generate load tickets.
The global food chain is complex, bringing together farmers, warehousing, shipping companies, distributors, and retailers. And currently these types of organizations are using outmoded methods of record keeping and are only loosely tied together using inefficient manual processes and communications.
More and more information is being captured every day, and this information must be properly integrated and managed for analysis and real-time decision making. And systems and communications across organizations need to be integrated.
Food industry leaders are poised to revolutionize utilizing blockchain technology. This will bring about higher standards of food quality and greater health and safety for the public at large.
The agriculture blockchain will bring great value to consumers by improving the accuracy of their purchase decisions, and by potentially halting the spread of illness. By reading a QR code on a smart phone it will be possible to ascertain the entire supply chain of food products, including identification of the source farm and all parties involved in processing and distribution, and anything affecting the quality and safety of these food products.
“The World Health Organization estimates that nearly 1 in 10 people become ill every year from eating contaminated food, with 420,000 dying as a result. Food crime is a rising trend, and Arc-net points to national reports claiming 30 – 40 percent of the food we eat is either adulterated or mislabeled… and according to the TÜV SÜD Safety Gauge Food Segment Report, only 64 percent of companies say they can trace every component of their products through the supply chain. In a time dubbed the “era of transparency,” this is disconcerting to say the least...”*
*Blockchain Lures the Food Industry, by Ramy Caspi, radarZero, Mar 6, 2018
Marketing campaigns are coordinated series of steps that can include promotion of a product through different mediums. Many businesses create marketing campaign to increase sales and provide a steady stream of prospects. Customer Relations Management Systems can play a primary role in marketing campaigns by targeting right audiences and intelligently segmenting the potential buyers of your products.
There are different technology products for managing marketing campaigns, but unless your marketing campaign manager has the ability to import all the data on your prospects from your Customer Relations Management program, you face a difficult challenge in data entry to set up one of these specialist programs and to keep its database synched with your Customer Relations Management System. Except in special cases or very large collections of marketing campaigns, your CRM offers the practicality you need without an additional program.
CRM offers many advantages in marketing campaigns. One of the major advantages is the granularity. Instead of working with a generalized prospect list that doesn’t focus on the best potential Customer Relations Management Systems will let you segment your prospects who are most likely to respond to this particular marketing campaign.
Targeted marketing campaigns in CRM will let businesses to maximize the benefits companies get for the money spent. Besides saving money on campaigns, CRM also lets to target your campaigns more precisely. A precise campaign will be more successful.
Almost every business has several marketing campaigns going on simultaneously and some medium to large businesses will have hundreds of marketing campaigns. It’s important to keep the prospect clients separate so you can trace them back to the campaign that generated them and draw a conclusion on the success of each campaign. Determining of the success of each campaign is especially important if you are running several test campaigns to decide on different approaches to your audience.
CRM keeps the responses in one centralized place so you can judge the success of each campaign. It also makes it easy to keep track of the details of each response, not just which campaign generated it. Information is collected on each prospect, including demographics and where the prospect comes from. Knowing the source of prospects has a strategic advantage because a several different lists are purchased by a business to generate particular campaigns. It is important to judge the responses from each list so that a more focused campaign starts again. A more focused campaign will increase the possibility of closing the sale.
Most marketing campaigns involve repeated communication with prospects at carefully timed intervals. Customer Relations Management System allows you to set reminders on when the next prospect communication should be initiated, or in some cases will automatically send the next contact email. These features prevent contacts from slipping through the cracks and throwing your carefully planned schedule off.
A Marketing campaign management is another example of the tool built into modern Customer Relations Systems. In today’s competitive environment, more businesses are recognizing this fact and moving away from just using their CRM program as a contact list manager. They are finding that CRM includes powerful tools to help them manage their sales and marketing functions better, increase sales and improve the bottom line.
For more information please contact us.
The agriculture industry is evolving, and big changes are coming. Digital product traceability is increasingly required by government regulators and by large food suppliers who are the customers of agricultural processors, where in the past this was far less pressing. This implies the need to capture and manage more information about inventories and business processes, and to integrate growers, processors and handlers onto a common platform with shared information and communications.
Agricultural processors are getting flooded with information. More and more data is being generated and captured every day. And managing this information for decision making is becoming increasingly important.
But how can almond growers, processors and handlers benefit by upgrading their systems now?
There are several approaches an organization can take when it comes to ERP implementation. It is important to remember that each organization must choose the best strategy for its particular needs:
• Big bang rollout - Here, the implementation happens in one single go. All users move to the new system on a given date.
• Phased rollout - Here, the implementation occurs in phases over an extended period of time. Users move onto new system in a series of steps over a period of time.
• Parallel adoption - Here, both the legacy and new ERP system run in parallel. Users learn the new system while working on the old.
A big bang ERP implementation happens in a single major event. The installation of ERP systems and all the modules happens across the entire organization at once, hopefully after a
great amount of proper planning. Of course, there are many pre-implementation activities that need to be carefully planned and carried out in preparation for this big bang event but once these activities are carried out then the old system will be turned off so the new system can take over. This implementation methodology was commonly used in the earlier days of ERP -- and also contributed to the higher rate of failure – but it is also quick and often less costly in the long run. Here is a quick look at the advantages and disadvantages.
• Shorter implementation cycle
• Cost effective in the long run
• From an employee perspective this is much easier to use as they don’t need to use two different systems for different needs
• Implementation date is fixed and everybody is mentally prepared
• Needs very meticulous planning in terms of fall back options
• More difficult to manage and there may be multiple dependencies
• Employees may have less time to familiarize themselves with the new system
• Planning has to be absolutely flawless as the risks associated with this approach are very high
• Any failures on one system can have a cascading effect on others
• There could be an “Initial Dip Phenomenon” which happens shortly after any implementation because users are struggling with the new system and organizational performance suffers
This is different from the Big Bang because the changes do not happen all at once but rather in a series of pre-determined steps and over a period of time. For example, a phased rollout might be approached by module, business unit, or location:
Phased Rollout by Module - This is the most commonly approach. The modules are implemented one by one. The critical ones are implemented first and then the rest get added
over time. In this approach the recommendation is to begin with core business functions – those necessary for daily operations -- and then slowly add in more modules and functionality with each phase. The reasoning behind this is that you are going to gather a great amount of learning and the necessary experience since the nuances of the system are exposed to you much earlier which makes you better prepared for the implementation in each subsequent phase of the project.
Phased Rollout by Business Unit - This approach is usually done by larger organizations. Here, implementation is carried out in one or more business units or departments at a time. For example, you begin with implementation in Material Management and then move to Inventory, Accounting, Payroll etc. As the team gains more experience with each implementation, the subsequent phases become more efficient.
Phased Rollout by Geography - For organizations with multiple locations, a phased rollout by geography is a common approach. For example, you begin with implementation in Asia,
and then slowly you move to Europe, Americas and other geographic locations. Each of the geographies will have their own business process defined and the challenge here is to
agree on a common business process at least 80% and the other 20% could be customized depending upon the specific needs of the geography. This approach is also called pilot
approach. Again, there are advantages and disadvantages for phased implementations.
• Very helpful if the team is new and less experienced in the given technology
• Provides enough time to consolidate all the learning and thus allow subsequent phases can go smoother
• It may not need such meticulous planning in terms of fall back options
• Less difficult to manage as the focus is limited
• Employees have enough time to familiarize themselves with the new system
• In case of any failure on one system, it may not have an adverse cascading effect on others
• With conversion occurring in parts, time is available for adjustments
• It is the least risky implementation
• Pace of change is much slower than big bang but faster than phased approach
• In case of any unforeseen failure with the new system, the old system still continues
• It allows overlap and fall-back controls
• Does not need very meticulous planning in terms of fall back options
• In terms of pure financial terms, this is the most expensive solution
• Employee has to enter data into both the system.
• Employee may continue to use the old system thus making the new system least effective
• Users tend to compare the old and new and take an unnecessarily negative stance against the unfamiliar
• Users have psychological issues letting go off the old system
There is no one single ERP methodology that covers all the disciplines required for an ERP implementation. There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to implementing an ERP system. The trick is to learn how to integrate these different methodologies together. Every company has unique goals, and an implementation requires careful planning and analysis.
Looking to implement ERP? We can help. Contact us.
Businesses have divisions between departments. There are sometimes problems between divisions and people don’t work in a harmony for the better purpose of the company.Most businesses must solve serious communication problems between departments to establish new processes. When the new processes are established divisions run smoothly between departments. The same holds true for data flows. When an IT process links data between departments, that link is usually stable until a change is needed.
Interdepartmental competition is usually strong between sales and manufacturing. Both departments are linked in their processes. Sales department is the basis for what is produced and sold. The products are what can be sold. The rivalries between these departments are also about the preferred enterprise application. Sales departments rely on their CRM system for daily operations and processes in businesses. Manufacturing departments operate with an ERP systems and nothing else. If the companies decide to integrate two enterprise applications, that has to be done by a professional and experienced vendor. It has to be taken seriously. There are many ways and potential benefits to integrating data. Here are the main benefits of CRM and ERP integration in manufacturing.
Companies have to deliver the products they produce for customers on a timely basis. Customers don’t want to hear that the items they had ordered won’t be available for delivery. Linking the CRM system to the ERP system allows businesses interchange data to optimize their near-term production planning. A CRM system will provide a real time sales forecast. Based on this data manufacturing departments can schedule production earlier rather than just producing when the orders are placed by customers. Better production planning place the orders ahead of time and any problems with production won’t be reflected on customers who are waiting for the items.
There are many different ways to calculate cost of production. Different numbers has different meaning to management. Overhead and indirect costs sometimes factor into costing calculations—sometimes not even within the same company. Often times the cost information is stored in both the Customer Relations Management system and the ERP system. Using a single version of costing means that manufacturing department will able to utilize the information and prioritize production scheduling to minimize the value of stored inventory.
Planning production for the future is critical for optimizing equipment, labor and raw material budgets. As product mixes change over time, those changes directly affect plans for equipment, warehouse space, vendor relations, and so on.The Customer Relations Management system functions as the early warning system. Sales professionals put clients’ preferred products into the CRM system for future sales. Data insights provided by CRM will identify changes in customer preferences. Manufacturing department will able to use this information for the prediction of future revenues.
Managing where to keep inventory is a constant battle. Missing product in one-location results in either multiple shipments or backordering, both of which can be costly to the company in terms of client relations or the added cost of extra shipment. Knowing the orders about to come in allows manufacturing to transfer finished items between locations in time to make combined shipments. This way your business saves money in shipments which will eventually increase the bottom line.
As the CRM provides data insights and the data is shared between sales and manufacturing management start to use this information to improve the operations of the company. Data analysis leads to improvements in manufacturing. The ideas above are just a starting point that applies to any manufacturing company that runs a Customer Relations Management application. The hardest part is making sense of the two systems’ data. That is where your business has to choose an experienced vendor that has the qualified technology staff and project manager to integrate both systems with no hurdle.
For more information please contact us.
CRM Systems is a full-service professional service provider of end-to-end ERP and CRM solutions for the SMB business market.
We are experts at what we do.
Contact us today for more information.
CRM Systems serves all of the United States and Canada with particular emphasis on the south-western USA, Ontario and western Canada.
Goudy Bookletter 1911