Jul 20, 2020

WTH is ERP Software? (AKA: What the Heck is Enterprise Resource Planning Software?): A Summary

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​Generic business software doesn’t understand you or your business. We provide NorthScope ERP software and step-by-step guidance for food manufacturers, giving them the tools to build the business they’ve always wanted. Sounds great, right? Except, er – rewind….what the heck does ERP even mean? Oh, well let us explain…

What does ERP stand for?

ERP stands for enterprise resource planning, which “is a process used by companies to manage and integrate the important parts of their businesses.” So, that means that ERP software is software that helps you manage your various business processes with a single, shared database across multiple functions and business units.

What does ERP software include?

As we mentioned above, ERP software is meant to help you manage your various business processes. Therefore, the basics of what ERP software includes are various accounting, manufacturing, inventory and customer management features. But, depending on the industry you’re in – such as food manufacturing – ERP software can actually include features that are specific to your needs.

The NorthScope Approach: NorthScope was built for food manufacturers so the “basic” features it includes are a lot more nuanced and catered to the industry – and the other included features are specific for the industry. From entire functional areas devoted to food processors like Fisherman Accounting and Grower Accounting to Fish Tickets with eLandings integration to food-specific inventory features, NorthScope was built as an all-in-one ERP solution to effectively and efficiently run your food manufacturing business. NorthScope’s entire suite of functional areas includes General Ledger, Accounts Receivable, Accounts Payable, Inventory Management, Brokerage, Rebates & Promotions, Sales Management, Fisherman Accounting, User-Friendly System, and Grower Accounting, all of which you can learn more about to discover the specific features included.

How is ERP software implemented & supported?

Implementation ERP software is a process and the timeline for doing so can vary greatly depending on the specific software, the software vendor, the team’s readiness to adopt new software, the team’s preparation, the team’s project management bandwidth, etc. Typically, once the software is chosen, an ERP implementation can consist of demonstrations, data migration, integration setup, configuration of the system and aligning business processes with the system’s features, training and testing. Then, after implementation many ERP vendors offer tech-supported services for an additional fee that typically includes a helpdesk , user manuals and documentation, etc.

The NorthScope Approach: The NorthScope approach to implementations consists of a simple, 3-step process called The NorthScope Plan. First, we identify the problem by meeting with your team to identify your pain points and understand what’s important to you. Then, we create a project plan designed to take away your paint points and is tailored for your success. Finally, we will launch your solution as a configured system with your data and hold your hand throughout training, launching and beyond. NorthScope implementations average about 6 to 9 months. The reason for this timeline is because NorthScope is super configurable in order to give you the control and to avoid custom code (which is too expensive and unnecessary). That means we put a lot of effort into understanding your business and your data to make sure that we get NorthScope setup as best as possible for you to use most efficiently and seamlessly immediately upon go live. Additionally, a lot of software companies only care about selling their solution and moving on to finding their next dollar, but that’s not us. We care about you and your success, which is why we’re thorough in our implementation process in order for NorthScope to help you succeed. And we don’t just stop at NorthScope, we’ll help you improve your business processes along the way, too. That’s the same approach we take to supporting you and your business after implementation is complete – our online help and customer support lines are available to you to give you direct access to the help you need to solve your problems throughout your lifetime as our business partner.

How is ERP software hosted?

ERP software can be obtained through on-premise installation or as a cloud-based solution or even a hybrid of the two. Web-based or cloud-based software is hosted in the cloud and is delivered via the internet, hosted software is software and data that is hosted off-site on third party servers, on-premise software is stored and implemented in onsite servers via your internal network, SaaS software is also known as Software-as-a-Service and is hosted with the vendor and is licensed to you on a subscription basis, and finally, a hybrid software can be a combination of onsite servers and cloud hosting.

The NorthScope Approach: NorthScope is web-based software that you host based on your preference, whether that’s on a physical server that your company maintains or a cloud server, which is not included with the purchase of NorthScope. Once NorthScope hosting is established, you can access NorthScope from anywhere so long as you have an internet connection and a supported web browser – no individual computer installation necessary!

What are the benefits of ERP software?

Because ERP software manages all your business processes in one place, one of its biggest benefits is synchronizing all departments at your company to make informed business decisions and work more efficiently. Additionally, because it connects different technologies used by each part of a business, ERP software can eliminate costly duplicate and incompatible technology. And, a good ERP system will allow for the automation and integration of business processes, therefore reducing the amount of manual labor that your team has to perform. The biggest thing to keep in mind, as stated by SelectHub, is “Without ERP software, data is siloed by department and can be difficult to access across a company. By using an ERP, data from multiple departments can be easily shared and visualized across an organization. This wealth of information and simplification can assist in the development of business goals and reduce the amount of time that your employees spend on tasks that could be automated.”

The NorthScope Approach: With NorthScope, you can optimize your business, grow without limitations, make informed business decisions, and save time and money. Moreover, as an Alaska Seafood Processor, NorthScope can help you serve your fishermen more effectively, save time and improve accuracy with eLandings integration, avoid miscalculations with automated Fish Ticket taxes & premiums, correct & re-price Fish Tickets without stress, easily manage fisherman loans, easily manage your business with transactions for the fishing industry, manage your tenders more effectively, increase productivity among plant staff, and seamlessly manage all aspects of your business with a single, cohesive system. Or, if you’re an Aquaculture Processor or Fruit & Vegetable Processor, NorthScope can help you serve your growers/farmers more efficiently, avoid Ticket errors with automated deductions and accruals, correct and re-price Tickets stress free, seamlessly manage all aspects of your business with a single, cohesive system, accurately trace from farm to fork, increase productivity among staff, effectively manage your business relationships, and focus on growing your business with an easy to learn and use system. Finally, if you’re a Primary Food Processor, using NorthScope can specifically help you to seamlessly manage all aspects of your business with a single, cohesive system, ensure the safety and quality of your products with lot traceability, maximize your time with an easy to learn and use system, effortlessly manage your business with a system designed for your industry, easily adapt as your business needs change, effectively manage your business relationships, accurately manage freight costs worry-free, regain control of your business for a secure future.

Will NorthScope work for my company?

As an ERP software, NorthScope was built to serve food manufacturers specifically in the Alaska Seafood, Fruit & Vegetable, Aquaculture and Primary Food Processing industries. It’s best for small to medium companies requiring as little as 3 NorthScope users to as many as 100+! NorthScope is great for those who have outgrown Quickbooks (or something like it) and some common pain points our customers experienced before switching to NorthScope were: non-integrated systems preventing them from achieving their goals, lost support for the solution they had because it was old and outdated and not maintained, too high of a cost to migrate or upgrade the solution they had, an inability to efficiently acquire new companies with the solution they had, a difficult to use system, and/or never-ending implementations because of a system that wasn’t tailored to their business or wasn’t implemented by a company with expertise in their industry. To see if NorthScope could be a good fit for you and your company, book a free demo today!