Enhanced Web-based ERP Application to Manage Business Development Operations
A leading manufacturer of computer hardware products, laptops, desktops, servers, monitors etc.
The customer is a market leader in Australia and New Zealand. Majority of their revenue come from the manufacturing and distribution of computer hardware products in these regions.
The key challenge was to enhance and maintain the web application (ERP application) used by their Business Development team to track details on production, sales, and inventory. Some of the significant business development procedures like forecasting, budgeting, and other critical workflows were not automated.
Following challenges hindered their day-to-day operations:
Forecasting of sales which is done on a monthly basis was not automated.
Budgeting which is done twice a year was not automated.
Some of the business functions were managed through Excel spreadsheets and emails.
Huge amounts of product information were maintained in spread sheets for further analysis. It was difficult to know when a product was added or modified.
An enhanced tool was required to perform analysis based on the product information.
Difficult to calculate the Gross Profit Percentage (GP%) within various modules. There was no feature that takes into account the changing parameters behind GP% calculation.
Absence of several critical modules that are vital to run business operations.
Effective Business-to-Business communication was not occurring.
Lack of coordination between business development managers (sales person) and product managers.
Involvement of complicated business rules and conditions.
The reports and dashboards were not optimized. It was difficult to know at which point they are losing their customers, revenue and profits.
Heavy maintenance cost to run the application.
The requirements included the following:
Automate the budgeting and forecasting functionalities, which were done manually using the current system
Automate the Business Development Planning / Proposal system workflow.
Functionality to dynamically calculate the Gross Profit percentage based on the changing parameters.
Feature to upload large amounts of product information to the database and seamlessly manage the workflows.
Following solutions were implemented:
Fully automated module that allows sales person to enter the forecast plans for various products. The ERP system offers a window period, during which the sales person can enter the forecast plan into the system. There is a workflow to manage the entire forecasting process (such as approval, rejection or amendments).
The budgeting module is also fully automated. It allows the sales person to enter the budgeting details into the ERP system during a window period. The module comprises a workflow for approval, rejection or modification.
A web service client was created to automatically calculate and view GP% information for each module. There is a facility to download the details as PDF files for review and approval.
This module provides a feature to upload spread sheets with bulk product information to the database. There is also a feature to download the information in a desired format.
Reduction in operating and maintenance costs
Easy to maintain the product information
Simplified the analysis of product information
Remarkable improvement in workflow management
Streamlined Budgeting and Forecasting processes
Attained more visibility into sales operations
Reduction in operational delays and unnecessary overheads
Automatic task delegation in the absence of any employee
Results at a Glance
85+% effort savings with automation of business development processes
3x improvement in product information analysis
200% accurate tracing of GP% information
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