How to train your employees to use the ERP system

Implementing an ERP system attracts  series of challenges. But these challenges don’t represent a dead end in the implementation process, but  are a thing that managers have to keep in mind in order for the soft to be implemented successfully in the company.

The biggest challenge is how to instruct the employees. A new ERP system is a vast platform  that can’t be operated  without a good knowledge of how to use it. In this case, the manager has two possibilities: either is buying a user manual for every employee depending on what ERP system is or will be implemented – a thing that is not recommended because in the emergency or under pressure cases, it might take longer to the employees to find the needed information, or they instruct them by keeping some training sessions that usually the software solution supplier offers so you can make the implementation.

For this process the managers must allocate from the beginning a separate budget for workshops and it’s recommended to be 17 % from the total sum of the ERP implementation.

When you opt for a training session, you must keep in mind few aspects regarding the communication with the employees:

  1. Communicate clearly to the employees which are the benefits and what abilities they will get after the training – the employees tend to be more preoccupied by the final result than the activities that they have to pass in order to get there, that is why is very important for them to understand why they need to pass through the entire process and with what this training will help them.
  2. Offer personalized information – most companies have different departments and the employees have positions in different domains , so the employees need to be separate in groups according to the departments that they are in so that the training session can be more relevant and easy to understand for them.
  3. Concentrate on  the results – the purpose of those training sessions is to help employees to understand how and ERP system works and how you can operate with it. It’s worthless to make your employees pass through modules that are not well established or  aren’t efficient. You must concentrate on real scenarios that happen in the daily activity of a company.
  4. Make special training for the industry from which the company is – these training sessions needs to be personalized, it is recommended to use specific examples that have a connection with the daily activity of the company. The purpose is to make the employees familiar with how they can use the ERP system.

The training of the employees is the key element on which the implementation on an ERP system depends on. If they have the appropriate preparation and the right abilities to operate an ERP system, then the results won’t be late in coming.


When do you need to implement the sales module of an ERP system

If you are a company that wants to improve the supply chain, then you will definitely need to implement the sales module in the ERP system. The efficiency growth in sales and distribution process helps the companies to maintain the competitive advantage.

The role of a sales module of an ERP system is to manage the entire sales process by inserting the price quotation, sending the offers, generating the most complex reports, sales forecast for the next periods etc.

The most important characteristics of a sales module of an ERP system are:

  • Allowing the definiteness and management of the company filiation so the organization can analyze the sales on individual filiation
  • Centralize the prices and product discounts, you can introduce prices on every customer or customer groups, order prices etc. and discounts on certain products, per family or global discount
  • Establish prices and payments
  • In case you also have the financial module, you can have detailed information about payments: the account code of the client, the address where the payment is done, dates about the bank account, credit limit, taxes etc.

So if you already have implemented other modules in an ERP system ( the stock management module, capital assets module, financial module etc. ) it is so much better because the sales module is in a tight connection with other modules.

The sales module from an ERP system will give you the chance to carry recordings  for the sales representatives and to calculate the commission based on the prices from the sale orders, invoices or receipts. Also, you can establish the commission percentage that every representative will take for all the orders or on some article groups, like the maximum discount that the representative can offer to their clients.

The sales module  of an ERP system can process sales orders, a primordial function for every company. The integrated sales module can allow to an organization that uses strong instruments,  but simple in the same time, to process easy and with accuracy the requests, the sales and orders.

Even if we are talking about business like e-commerce, B2B or B2C, this module can be successfully integrated in any ERP system.


How do you realize that you need to implement an ERP system

If you are having a small business that doesn’t mean that implementing an ERP system is something you don’t need. The truth is that a small business needs to be more agile than the competition.

Nowadays, no business is too small or too big to implement an ERP software.

Lots of companies have the impression that they can handle without an ERP system but the question is: which employee likes to make financial calculations manually and to manually separate mountains of data in all kinds of archives? Which employee likes to waste tons of hours doing reports and data tables manually? Implementing an ERP system will ease and streamline the return of every employee at the work place.

Here are some reasons and benefits of why you should consider implementing an ERP solution:

  • Generating useful information in real time – The fact that you will have urgent or less urgent information available, at any time, it will help you as a manager, but also the employees of the company when you will have to take the best decision. Lots of the decisions that are taken inside of a company are risky and put in danger the good development of it because the employees don’t always have time to collect the necessary data. An ERP system will centralize the data and will transmit it in real time.
  • Improved visibility – generally, the clients of a company have the impression that you can give them real and fast data when they need. There are moments when the clients want you to deliver an urgent order, but the employees are not sure that there are enough stock to honor the order or to deliver in due time. In cases like that, the role of an ERP system is to offer exact information about the stocks and visibility on every operation and on the supply chain.
  • Generate fast reports – The end of a month can be a true burden for some employees of the company because of the reports that they have to prepare. An ERP software can generate instantly all kinds of reports that can be personalized after the preferences of the client/employee. Also, the ERP solution can sense if there are any abnormalities, can simplify the repetitive entrances and other activities that are complex and time consuming.
  • The satisfaction of the clients is increased – Implementing an ERP software will help you to retain customers and to create a connection between the company and them, offering the exact delivery data, inventory data and the DIFOT rate ( Delivered In-Full, On-Time ).
  • Give a performance analysis of the business – the software that are available nowadays are very modern and are offering  performance analysis on the business. This helps the owners to get a better understanding of the way their business works, what are the market’s directions and also which are the client’s preferences.
  • The return growth of the employees and managers – An ERP system allows the employees to plan more efficient their work time succeeding to focus on the priorities of the company.

The ERP software won’t come on a “standard size”. This kind of system is divided in various types that are adapted specifically for certain jobs or industries and that ca be customized acting to the necessity of the company that uses it.


How can you find the perfect ERP system for your organization?

You took the decision to implement an ERP system but you don’t know where to start searching for the perfect contractor for your company’s domain? First of all, you have keep count of what the employees want: some of them may be enthusiastic, but some of them may be skeptic because of the fact that they think they might not know how to handle such a software.

In case your team is part of the last category then you make sure that you choose an easy ERP software using the following advices:

1.Simplify the business processes. An ERP system represents a part from resource planning of the company; the processes that are in your business will define the complexity of the ERP system. Thereby, you should first simplify the business processes from the interior of the company before your start implementing an ERP system.

2.Analize the needs of the company to know exactly how the ERP implementation can help. Along with the managers of the departments of the company you have to analyze very well which are the needs of the company and which is the role of an ERP system in the firm activities. With a list of precise “requests” it’s almost impossible to choose the wrong ERP system.

3.Which are the features and how easy you can use the ERP software. Take in consideration the challenges that the company is confronting and which of them can be solved through and ERP implementation. Evaluate what software solutions would cover these features and which do you plan to use. If it is possible, plan a demo with the contractors so you can see if the employees find the platform easy to use and if it allows them to fulfill their daily plans.

4.Imply the entire team. The ERP solutions tend to be implemented by the managers to reduce the costs and to develop the business, both processes been supervised by the entire management team. If the rest of the employees are not engaged in the decisional process of choosing and implementing an ERP system, then probably the final solution will not fit with the needs of the employees that will have to use it daily.

The ERP system represents an important instrument in every organization, and this could have a big impact over a business: planning activities, research and development, supply chain management, sales, marketing etc. There are numerous ERP systems available, that is why choosing the right software for the company needs a lot of dedication and attention from the managers.


Why the communication is important in a company after the ERP implementation?

Communication is a very important aspect that takes part in the implementation process of an ERP system.

An ERP software has the role to achieve particular goals, no matter if is about profit growth or a better efficiency in the company. No matter how expensive or complicated the ERP implementation is, it won’t have a big impact over the business if there isn’t a good communication strategy between the managers and the employees of the company.

A lot of companies offer to their employees training sessions after implementing the ERP system to help them to get used with this software, but also to raise the level of communication between the employees and the entire organization.

Here you have some advices of how you can improve the level of communication in your company after implementing an ERP system.

  • Announce the change. In this way the employees of the company will be interested to take part in the training of using the ERP soft.
  • Early communication. Make sure that you inform the employees in advance about the change that is going to happen in the organization.
  • Share FAQ. Make a list of questions and answers and send it in the entire organization or in the department where the implementation of the ERP system will take place.
  • Constant communication. Try to maintain a constant communication with the employees during the training, keep them informed about the changes that are happening and in which stage the ERP implementation is. In this way it will be easy for them to concentrate and apprehend the information during the formation and accommodation process with the ERP software.
  • Keep count of the feedback. The feedback of the employees should never be neglected, especially during the training and the ERP implementation.

The communication is an essential key for the general management strategy of changing at an organizational level. Using ideas and innovative tactics to transmit various information about the implementation of an ERP system towards the employees it will ensure you a better and successful implementation.


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