In today’s hyper-competitive markets, no company can coast on its reputation and hope to survive. Unfortunately, innovation is one of the hardest things for a company to promote, achieve, and maintain. It’s a challenge akin to knowing the unknowable and succeeding at the impossible.
There are no sure-fire ways to produce innovative products, services, and processes. There are, however, tools that create the conditions necessary to foster breakthroughs. An ERP is one of them, and its ability to usher in the new is significant. If your company is struggling to find the “next big idea,” discover how an ERP can aid your search.
Eliminate Gaps in Understanding
Without an ERP, your data is likely separated by department and only accessible to authorized members. That means insights that could prove to be essential are kept behind a locked door for all but a few. An ERP opens up these doors and gathers all your data into one expansive and cross-connected repository. Once your team has easy access to any and all relevant information, there is the strong potential for unexpected discoveries to present themselves.
A good ERP vendor will work in collaboration with you to customize your product to meet your business needs and workflows. During this process, businesses are forced to take a hard look at how they do things and how well those practices actually work. Forward-thinking companies use the implementation process to abandon what’s broken and improve what’s working. In the wake of the implementation, they haven’t just gained a new piece of technology, rather, they’ve gained a smarter and better way of operating.
Act in Real Time
Innovation is often a matter of seizing the right moment. When you have a cloud-based ERP in place, everyone on your team is working with the most accurate and up-to-date information available. Even if a change is made by a remote sales professional on the other side of the world, the update is integrated into the system immediately. Having the most current and therefore relevant information at your disposal enables your enterprise to make swift, confident decisions rather than being paused by uncertainty.
The ingredients for innovation are likely already present in your organization. You simply need to find a way to combine them to make a sum greater than its parts. An ERP is as much a collaboration tool as a data-management tool because it invites everyone to contribute to just about every project. Great ideas that may have languished in obscurity before are now brought into the spotlight.
Take Advantage of Special Skills
An ERP automates, streamlines, and optimizes many of the most time and labor intensive workflows your team is tasked with. Once the drudgery and distraction of these tasks are removed from their list of responsibilities, they can focus on what they really do best: selling, strategizing, organizing, managing, motivating, etc. Your team can spend more time doing what you hired them to do and less time on administrative work designed to maintain the status quo. Once people are free to be their best, the conditions are ripe for innovation to follow.
Innovation is about more than simply doing things differently. It is fundamentally about doing things better. If you want to make an improvement rather than just a change, an ERP is your greatest asset.
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