Increasing their competitiveness is the main objective that most companies try to pursue to increase their business and be more attractive in the eyes of the potential customer.
To achieve this it is necessary that the company management mechanisms are sufficiently developed, through complete but also adequately flexible solutions. In this context, bespoke software development is needed.
A well-configured piece of management software can represent the ideal way to bring advantages and benefits to a company: from invoicing to the organization of warehouse activities, from purchasing management to indicating deadlines, these are just some of the possibilities offered by management software that can be integrated with business processes to monitor and manage them.
The main objective, however, is not to complicate things but to simplify them: a good management software system must be easy to use, quick in carrying out each operation and above all efficient and safe, to truly offer a flexible and complete solution for a company. It must also act as a 'collector' of data and information, too often stored in different databases with difficulty in accessing them.
The choice of the most suitable management software is therefore directly linked to the advantages that it can bring to corporate work: the ideal is therefore to work on ad hoc professional solutions, or tailor-made software that allow you to optimize and simplify the business processes of the specific activity, in order to obtain not only working but also economic benefits, with an optimal cost-benefit ratio. Benefits that can be tangible, that is linked to the reduction of costs (less work by operators, reduction of costs related to human error, improvement in productivity and simplification of procedures) and intangible, detectable instead in the improvement of coordination and timing of different operational phases of a company (customer satisfaction, greater staff autonomy, improvement of the working methodology).
The configuration of the management software is of fundamental importance, to ensure immediate benefits in terms of the reorganization of processes; allowing an increase in productivity, and therefore in company growth that corresponds to a concrete return on investment in a relatively short time.
Usually, the idea is to develop a three-year plan, dedicating the first year to the realization of the investment, the second to the definition of strategic objectives and actions to be carried out and the third to recover the money invested through using the software.
During the structuring and configuration of the management system, it is first of all good to check which are the most common operating procedures, then eliminate the superfluous or inefficient ones and instead optimize and simplify all the others.
Having clear ideas about what can be improved will allow you to benefit from a significant push forward, a competitive advantage linked to maximizing operational efficiency.
Each company has different needs and often the need for a system is suited to its reality. For this reason, to understand which type of management software is best, one must start from an analysis of the activities and operational processes, evaluation of priorities to be met in order to obtain the organizational improvement that is being sought.
The main functions of a management software platform
The functionalities of management software are represented by all those characteristics that satisfy the needs of a single company or professional reality. With reference to the list seen above, we can identify macro areas that the software should always guarantee:
- Accounting and Administration: accounting, administrative, and financial management.
- Active Cycle (Customer Management): complete management of the customer billing process, from the management of orders / offers to the issue of electronic invoices.
- Passive Cycle (Supplier Management): complete management of the company-supplier relationship, offers, registration of goods, and the receipt of passive invoices.
- Warehouse: management of warehouse movements, deposits, and inventories.
- Production: management of the production process from MRP (planning of material requirements) to planning and scheduling of the entire production cycle.
In the US, most of the SMEs are Micro-companies and the most popular features are the active cycle (for active invoicing) and the warehouse.
The software that manages the billing
Electronic invoicing has greatly simplified the issuing procedures, which today are practically automatic: the software for invoicing must therefore have very specific characteristics.
First of all, it must allow the compilation of invoices in a simple and fast way: this means that it must be connected to the customer, supplier, product and service master data; must allow for easy data entry, the ability to change data relating to prices, rates, etc. directly during the compilation phase. Being able to generate an invoice from a quote is also an important feature in terms of speed of use. But that’s not everything. The ability to manage recurring invoices in all those cases where, for example, maintenance fees are foreseen in your business is important too. With the mandatory electronic invoicing, the software must allow the generation of XML files with a simple click and be connected to a Hub service that deals with transmission to the Exchange System and that is ready to receive supplier invoices.
The software that manages the warehouse
Warehouse management software, also called WMS (warehouse management system), refers to the applications that allow us to manage items and / or materials in stock and the related loading and unloading operations, inventory management. For micro-enterprises, there are elementary applications, which ensure minimum activities: generally, they are limited to inventory management, loading and unloading of goods, and inventory management. These software systems can then be integrated with sector management procedures, such as those for shops, which require specific software packages to manage activities.
In slightly more complex business situations, the warehouse management program must ensure more complex management and, above all, must integrate with other processes. For example, it must ensure the management of stocks, inventories and reorders, must be able to use the reading of bar codes, must manage the bill of materials, production, and so on. For some companies, it is necessary to request customization of this software management.