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Business Process Improvements that Will Build Resilience in 2022

Allan O'Donnell
July 13th, 2022

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In 2022, economic uncertainty and inflation, supply chain issues, talent shortages, and continued new coronavirus variants have Aussie put businesses under pressure. They’ve (once again) had to navigate challenging times.

But, Aussies have been through uncertainty before. Many have already invested in technology to help them adapt. And many more are planning to invest. Gartner has projected a total Australian IT spend of AU$117.2 billion in 2022, increasing by an incredible 13.1% from 2021.

Gartner distinguished research vice president John-David Lovelock comments, “CIOs are accelerating IT investments as they recognise the importance of flexibility and agility in responding to disruption. As a result, purchasing and investing preference will be focused in areas including analytics, cloud computing, seamless customer experiences and security.”

Along with technology investment, companies in Australia are placing a sharp focus on business process improvements.

While planning and discipline are needed to enact process improvements that increase efficiency and operating profit, smaller-scale improvements can bring more immediate results.

Given the uncertainty many companies have faced in recent years, there’s never been a better time to focus on initiatives that improve business resilience.

Here are the top business process improvements that will build resilience for your organisation in 2022 and beyond.

Take stock of previous years

Hindsight is 20/20, as they say. A look back at the previous years provides context for opportunities ahead. It provides a valuable chance to analyse what’s worked in the past (and what needs to be improved upon).

To understand past performance, you need clarity of your company mission and vision, and the time-bound business goals you’ve been working towards.

A quick refresher on mission and vision: a mission statement defines what the company does, its objectives and how it will reach those objectives. A vision statement describes the ideal future position of the company. Think of “mission” as a reflection of today and “vision” as an aspiration of tomorrow.

When reviewing last year’s performance, use accurate, relevant data. Are your performance metrics critical to achieving specific business goals – and were they reached within set timeframes? Do your metrics support your company’s mission and vision in some way, moving you closer to that aspirational tomorrow state? Start with a clear idea of relevant data and metrics you need to identify what’s worked and what needs improvement.

Re-examine your business processes

It’s common to think that all business processes need to be set up, documented and running consistently before considering BPI (business process improvement). But in reality, you can make significant, iterative improvements by focusing on the low hanging fruit – those missing, time-consuming or undocumented processes.

BPI can be highly successful when removing low-value and convoluted processes. It will save you time, lower operating costs and increase outputs.

Lean six sigma is a popular BPI methodology that reduces “downtime” and bottlenecks between process steps. By following a “define, measure, analyse, improve, and control” system, you can attack each issue methodically and make progressive gains.

The best place to start with any process improvement initiative is talking to the people responsible for sets of processes. Ask them which issues can be improved quickly and which need more extensive planning. These conversations are critical to BPI. It isn’t just about solving problems; it’s also about building a culture of continuous improvement that will strengthen your business processes and provide lasting value.

Increase collaboration with tools for the “new normal”

Workplace operations underwent a serious upheaval during the pandemic as businesses were forced to work remotely where possible. However, the silver lining was uncovering how remote work helped employees work more efficiently, increase collaboration, and build long-term business resilience.

Video conferencing applications like Zoom and Google Meet enabled teams to stay connected and collaborative during lockdowns – and helped salespeople stay in touch with customers. In addition, cloud file storage and sharing platforms like Sharepoint and Dropbox have let businesses work cooperatively and gain greater consistency of information. With these cloud-based services, there are less static documents sitting on desktops and more live collaboration. Cloud-based ERP systems have also brought secure role-based access to employees across entire business operations and empowered companies to work remotely with all the data and functionality of being in the office.

Most companies now have a toolkit of cloud applications that keep everyone productive and collaborative regardless of where teams are working. These companies are now set up to work more effectively and keep thriving – whether that’s in or out of the office.

Leverage automation

The Pareto principle, commonly known as the 80/20 rule, shows that 80% of results generally come from 20% of a company’s efforts. Conversely, businesses can spend up to 80% of time creating only 20% of the desired outcomes.

Think about the manual, repetitive tasks your team is doing each day. Which tasks need human intervention, and which don’t? Automation of repetitive tasks can help manage that time-consuming 80% much more effectively and give your team more time to focus on strategic initiatives.

Simple automations are a great place to start, like email auto-responders that acknowledge customer queries and set expectations of when they’ll hear back. When you’re ready to save serious time, cloud-based ERP solutions like NetSuite can automate processes across your entire business. Find out 9 Key Areas of Your Business to Automate to see the possibilities.

Get ahead with planning and budgeting

Unexpected changes and rapid shifts in product category demands make it difficult to take decisive action. Many companies rely on spreadsheets to manage financial planning, pulling static information from multiple disconnected sources. It takes significant time to manage complex spreadsheets, verify data, and manually rework assumptions as situations change. Without data that’s connected to wider business operations, you also end up with a limited view and less meaningful insights.

NetSuite Planning and Budgeting is a system-agnostic solution that unlocks access to a single, cloud-based environment. Data is entered and managed in one central system, making information management faster and easier for all stakeholders. When finance teams collaborate on planning and budgeting reports, they can leverage meaningful input from business and operational managers.

More accurate financial insights, paired with a collaborative approach to planning and budgeting can put your business in a much more resilient position.

Work with the right technology partners

Working with the right technology partner is just as important as choosing the best technologies to build your business resilience.

When you’re assessing technology partners, think about the critical factors for your business. Transparency of communication is a big one. You’ll want to build a trusted partnership and this requires clear and transparent expectations to be set by the partner. Transparency is also about understanding your unique business needs. Make sure the partner takes time to uncover your challenges, goals, and needs before delivering their expert advice.

Reputation is also vital. Look for a technology partner that has an industry reputation for delivering projects on time and to budget. Have they met deadlines in the past while also delivering high-quality outcomes? Ask for testimonials and references or speak with other customers to get a strong sense of that partner’s reputation.

DWR is a trusted Australian technology partner who delivers the tools to amplify success; by bringing the right cloud ERP technology, process framework, and business experts together. The team has executed 250+ projects on time and to budget. The cloud ERP experts form lasting relationships with their customers, consistently looking for ways to add value to new and existing implementations.

If a cloud ERP system is part of your business resilience plan, talk to an ERP expert at DWR. They’ll give you the advice and ideas you need to continue building your business resilience well into the future.

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9 Ways CRM Boosts Customer Acquisition & Retention Strategies

Allan O'Donnell
May 19th, 2022

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Global search and social media advertising rose by an average of 45% in the 2021 financial year, as reported by Mi3. Cost increases aren’t limited to digital advertising either. As inflation creeps up, so do wage expectations. And with ongoing supply chain issues and climbing fuel costs, event budgets are also rising. With factors across the board contributing to higher cost of customer acquisition (COCA), you want to be sure that leads are turning into paying customers.

It’s also critical to ensure your customer retention stays high to keep your customer lifetime value (CLV) healthy. So how can you increase lead conversion while also boosting? It all comes down to experience. Customer experience, that is.

When you get the customer experience right from the outset, you stand to boost acquisition and retention. By focusing on the experience, you can also increase CLV. For example, Emplifi shows that 61% of buyers would pay at least 5% more if they knew they would receive an outstanding customer experience.

To nail the customer experience throughout the buyer lifecycle, from lead to customer advocacy, you need the right platform and processes. With CRM software, you can:

  • Target the right leads with the most relevant messaging.
  • Have value-driven conversations.
  • Better understand which potential and existing customers need focus.
  • Drive alignment between your sales, marketing, and customer service teams.
  • More effectively turn acquisition into long-term customer retention.

Before diving into 9 ways a CRM system will boost your customer acquisition and retention strategies, here’s a quick overview of what CRM means.

What is CRM Software?

CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management, but it could also be described as an experience management system. Three essential aspects of customer experience management include information, integration, and organisation.

A CRM system helps you log, track and consolidate all lead, prospect, and customer information. That data is made available to all stakeholders, who can then use the information to support and improve the buyer journey.

By integrating all data into one system, sales reps can leverage buying signals from multiple channels and explore cross-sell and upsell opportunities. In addition, feedback from sales and customer service managed in your CRM can deliver greater insights into the end-to-end customer experience, helping refine marketing campaigns and drive higher retention.

CRM software also keeps your teams highly organised with tasks, reminders, calendar entries, and more. With integrated information forming a 360-degree view of leads, prospects, and customers, CRM ensures that relevant, targeted customer interactions are organised and happening at the optimal times.

So how can CRM software improve customer acquisition and retention?

1 – Understanding your perfect customers

Before you even acquire a new lead, you need to have the correct targeting in place. Not every contact has a need for your products or services; and for those who do, it may not be the right time or the right fit. When your targeting is aligned with your ideal customers, however, you’ll dramatically increase the chance of doing business with them.

With a CRM system to log, track and consolidate customer data, you can gain valuable insights that help you target potential new customers much more effectively. For example, what do your existing customers look like? Why did they purchase from your company? And can they be sorted into categories that will help you target them in groups, such as age, geography, and interests? These types of data help you understand your perfect customers and how to segment your communications to potential new customers.

2 – Relevancy and value

As Gartner reports, an astounding 43% of B2B customers say they prefer not to interact with a sales rep at all. Almost half of your revenue generation pool wants to navigate the buyer journey alone. But what if you could ensure sales reps are always reaching out to leads, prospects, and customers with highly-targeted information based on individual needs, preferences, and stage of the buyer journey? What if every rep called customers about a recent webinar your customer attended or promotion for products they’ve shown great interest in, rather than trying to push an unrelated sale? The approach can change the conversation – and the outcome.

A single source of truth can empower sales reps with more informed, targeted conversations. By leveraging the integrated customer data that CRM collects and organises, you stand to see more customers answer your sales calls and messages – because they know the conversation will be relevant and valuable to them.

“Every time I place a call to a potential customer, I’m thinking about how I can add value to them. With the insights and organisation of data in NetSuite CRM, I know what’s most important. And that lets me connect with people on a whole new level.”

Michael Hart, Business Development Executive at DWR.

3 – Proactively answering sales questions

Sales teams have a lot of conversations and inherently collect a lot of information about potential and existing customers. If that data only stays in the salesperson’s brain, however, you lose the ability for everyone to better anticipate what customers need.

Your CRM software will help log, categorise, and view customer pain points, common queries, and recurring questions when set up correctly. You can then ready your sales teams with answers through analysis of that data – before the next lead or prospect has even asked the question. What better way to build confidence in your company right from the initial sales pitch?

As part of your CRM setup, also define how your teams will use it. The technology partner you work with to implement your CRM solution can customise the system to your current or desired processes. Give your sales team the tools to easily log, track and review the data you’re collecting on all your potential and new customers.

4 – Tailoring your communications

It’s not just sales teams that stand to understand customers at a deeper level using CRM. With a system that includes marketing automation and analysis, you can measure the most effective campaigns. You can also tailor communications to what’s important to each customer category by further segmenting your audiences.

Whether you’re marketing to leads about new product offerings or to customers who may be interested in upsells or cross-sells, keeping your communications targeted is sure to see much higher engagement.

A CRM solution like NetSuite is fully-integrated as part of its ERP platform. This includes consolidated information and functionality across sales, marketing, finance, inventory, customer service, and more.

5 – Process automation to sell more with less effort

https://dwr.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2022/03/DWR-NetSuite-ERP-Financial-Management-Software-Cash-managementYour processes are just as important as the platform in making your CRM solution a success. By automating lead management (including lead scoring) functions, you’ll build consistency, save time, and develop more significant insights.

It’s vital to focus efforts on the leads most likely to result in new business. Think about how you score and assign leads right now. CRM software streamlines these processes and, depending on the setup by your technology partner, can score every new lead based on predefined criteria and assign them directly to sales reps based on round-robin, sales territories, and more.

Sales rep follow-up time on new leads is also critical. A Harvard Business Review study, for instance, found that companies contacting potential customers within an hour of receiving a query were 7x more likely to qualify the lead. With your CRM system automatically routing new leads to sales reps and notifying them immediately, they can take fast action and increase their chances of closing the sale.

Nurturing those leads can also be automated with marketing campaigns, tailored to each buyer journey stage. Even sales follow-up activity can be automated post-campaign or manually scheduled to initiate highly-relevant discussions based on your marketing offers and content.

CRM software can enable effective lead scoring to make sense of lead data and prioritise sales activity. In addition, automation of targeted campaigns with sales follow-up triggers ensures your potential new customers have great experiences, right from the start, with relevant, personalised communications across all marketing and sales touchpoints.

6 – Progressing your pipeline

When your sales team is prospecting their leads database, they need adequate background and detail about those leads to have conversations that connect.

Pay close attention to how your sales reps are accessing lead information (and how much time it takes them). Do you have a system for centralising lead data across marketing and sales teams?

A CRM system empowers sales reps with a complete view of lead and prospect information. Teams store all prospect data in one place so it can be quickly accessed and leveraged when needed.

With the system and processes in place to effectively organise prospect data, reps can spend more time generating pipeline. Using a CRM, you’ll also be able to make better predictions about your pipeline activity. For example, with standard classifications for the likelihood of deal success, a CRM can give you weighted sales predictions based on more accurate pipeline data. These automatic calculations make predicting sales outcomes faster, easier, and far more accurate.

7 – Staying on track while sealing the cracks

https://dwr.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2022/03/DWR-NetSuite-ERP-Financial-Management-Software-Cash-managementYour teams need to be highly organised to ensure valuable communications are happening at the correct times. CRM software helps your sales, marketing, and customer service people stay on track with tasks, reminders, calendar entries, and more. Additionally, sales process automation takes the hard work out of organising follow-up tasks and progress reporting. With shared calendar views and dashboards with automatically updated KPIs and reminders, sales spend less time chasing information and more time selling.

Even more critically, everyone has a live view of leads, prospects, and customers to understand which contacts are at which stage of the buyer lifecycle – and the most recent actions that have been taken. A CRM system like NetSuite provides full tracking on every interaction and automates follow-up tasks and reminders to ensure nothing ever falls through the cracks.

“Providing an excellent customer experience is paramount for our business. So having a central source of information I can trust, across all customer touchpoints, is truly invaluable. At any time, I know how we’re performing and what the team needs to focus on. I can see it all in real-time on my NetSuite CRM dashboard view.”

Tiernan O’Connor, Director of Customer Engagement at DWR.

8 – Turning acquisition into long-term retention

It’s critical to understand your new customers – what their buyer journey was like and what could be improved in future. As part of the customer acquisition and onboarding process, consider customer surveys, introductions to account managers, or regular customer service check-ins to ensure your new customers have the best experience possible.

Automation of new customer communications can save you significant time while ensuring your customers are sent the information they need about your company. Whether this is a simple “how to contact us” email, links to knowledge base articles, or suggestions of complementary products and services, staying in contact with new customers can help turn them into long-term advocates.

9 – Continuously improving the customer experience

A Qualtrics survey of 1,292 executives from Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Japan, Singapore, U.K., and U.S., found that a staggering 89% of companies leading with customer experience performed financially better than their competitors. That’s why it’s vital to keep improving the experience.

It may sound like a lot to get a handle on. After all, experience applies to every touchpoint your customer has with your company. However, with one system tracking all interactions from lead to customer advocate, you can make sense of your important customer data and understand what’s working (or not working) at each stage of the buyer journey.

CRM software can help you analyse and understand your customers’ experiences. Then, you can use that data to inform decisions on how to adjust products, services, and processes around engaging with customers.

To consistently grow revenue, you need to continuously improve the customer experience. Ensure you have the platform and the processes to do exactly that.

Taking the next step

With many external factors contributing to higher cost of customer acquisition (COCA), it’s more important than ever to target the right leads with the right conversations to increase conversion. It’s also essential that customer retention stays high for a healthy customer lifetime value (CLV) and higher profitability. 

To boost customer acquisition retention, focus on providing an outstanding customer experience at every touchpoint. A CRM system is the platform to support your efforts, keep you on track, and bring greater understanding of your customers. When implemented by experts, optimised processes and automation will also help you realise ROI faster and do more with less effort.

To take the next step and understand if a CRM system is right for your business, organise your quick Q&A session with a CRM expert.

Why CRM Software Is Vital to Your Revenue Generation Strategy

CRM

Get your in-depth CRM business guide with detail about:

✔️ The 7 signs your business needs a CRM now.
✔️ Managing leads, pipeline, and forecasting more effectively.
✔️ How sales teams can improve the customer experience and boost revenue.

And a lot more to uncover. Download your in-depth CRM guide now.

 

 

See our brief video overview of NetSuite CRM functionality

This quick NetSuite CRM video overview details how to empower your sales team to sell more.

The pace of change has accelerated exponentially in recent years. The pandemic heavily impacted how we live and work, forcing businesses to adapt rapidly. Many companies that focused on updating their technology not only survived but thrived.

The 2022-2023 federal budget highlights the need for continued technology investment with additional tax deductions on offer. $1.6bn in tax revenue will be put towards supporting tech investment. In addition, SMEs with an aggregated annual turnover of less than $50 million will be eligible for the Small Business Technology Investment Boost and Small Business Skills and Training Boost schemes.

Federal-Budget-Tax-Deduction-Bonus-for-Cloud-Technology-Investment-01In his budget speech, Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said he hoped these schemes would encourage small businesses “that are embracing the digital revolution” and reward them for investment in new technologies.

“Every hundred dollars these small businesses spend on digital technologies like cloud computing, e-invoicing, cybersecurity, and web design will see them get a $120 tax deduction,” Frydenberg said.

 

The Small Business Technology Investment Boost

Small businesses with under $50 million turnover will have access to an additional 20% bonus deduction for the cost of business technology expenses and depreciating assets. According to the ATO, “portable payment devices, cyber security systems or subscriptions to cloud based services” will all be covered.

The bonus deduction will apply to purchases made from 7:30 pm AEDT 29 March 2022 until 30 June 2023, up to a limit of $100,000 in expenditure per year. These deductions include expenses for cloud ERP systems.

 

Small Business Skills and Training Boost

Small businesses can also access a 20% bonus deduction for eligible external training courses to upskill employees and help businesses “become more productive and competitive”, according to Frydenberg.

For every $100 spent on external training courses for employees, the business can claim a $120 tax deduction. There is no spending limit for deductions on training courses at the 120% bonus rate. Still, rules will apply, such as the course being run by an external education provider registered in Australia. Internal or on-the-job training initiatives are not eligible.

This bonus scheme will apply to eligible skills and training expenditure incurred in the period commencing from 7:30 pm AEDT 29 March 2022 until 30 June 2024.

See the full details of the Small Business Technology Investment Boost and Small Business Skills and Training Boost at ato.gov.au

 

A cloud technology platform for business growth

NetSuite is one cloud ERP solution that is designed as a platform for business growth.

Blog-Why-ERP-is-the-foundation-what-is-an-ERPMany companies add single-use systems to their infrastructure over time, such as an accounting system, a separate inventory system, a separate CRM, and so on. However, running several disconnected systems in parallel introduces a range of issues – particularly as a business grows.

Data needs to be exported from one system, re-imported into another, consolidated, checked, and re-checked to get an accurate picture of finances and operations across the company. Many companies rely on complex spreadsheets for reporting, though this also means relying on static, often-outdated data. As a result, systems and processes start slowing you down when they should be helping you grow faster.

NetSuite is a core technology platform that brings together all core business functions. Inventory, CRM, sales and marketing, project management, HR, and more are managed within a single system. Key advantages of using a single ERP system include:

  • You gain an accurate, real-time view of business performance.
  • Manual, repetitive work like re-entering and re-checking static data is eliminated.
  • With a reduced manual workload, your team can focus on strategic initiatives
  • Live dashboards with KPIs and report snapshots help you make faster, more informed decisions.
  • Secure, cloud-based access enables decision-makers to react quickly to changes, wherever they are.

Learn more about why ERP is the foundation of business growth or get a live demo of cloud technology with an expert now.

 

How DWR can help maximise your technology investment

Implementation

https://dwr.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2022/03/DWR-NetSuite-ERP-Financial-Management-Software-Cash-managementThe implementation of an ERP is just as important as selecting the right technology platform. When set up by a team of cloud technology experts, company-wide, streamlined processes are put in place. This approach puts everyone on the same page, increases digital process efficiency, and creates a holistic solution that enables rapid scalability.

To maximise the ROI of your ERP investment, DWR takes a personalised approach. The team listens, understands, and takes a considered approach to solve current problems and set up best practices for long-term business transformation. Crucial areas which DWR focus on to deliver implementation value include:

  • Time-saving automation that increases your company’s bandwidth
  • Streamlined processes for high-performance operations
  • Live, consolidated reporting that empowers decision-makers

 

Training

Whether you’re considering a new ERP implementation or running an existing NetSuite instance, user training is essential to maximise your long-term ROI. DWR can tailor training options to your specific needs, which may involve: 

  • New starter training to work effectively with NetSuite, faster
  • System admin training to stay up-to-date with NetSuite processes, form customisations, reporting, workflows, and more.
  • Optimising your existing setup and configuration
  • Automation of business processes
  • Industry-specific system configuration

DWR’s lasting relationships with customers are driven by a passion for consistently adding value to new and existing implementations. So book a live demo of NetSuite or get in touch with an expert now.

Small Business Digital Transformation Strategies

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Australian small businesses are under immense pressure in the current environment.

Find out 3 digital transformation growth strategies that small businesses should prioritise right now to gain a competitive advantage.

Grab your complimentary eBook now.

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NetSuite Technology

NetSuite vs MYOB Advanced – Which ERP System for Growth?

Allan O'Donnell
March 11th, 2022

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Supply chain disruptions and various unexpected challenges have severely affected the modern business landscape. In 2022, it’s critical for businesses to re-focus on strategic growth initiatives – and the technology to supporting faster growth.

According to Gartner, IT spending is projected to total USD $4.5 trillion in 2022, an increase of 5.1% from 2021. More specifically, enterprise software is estimated at 14.4%, 11.0%, and 11.9% growth respectively for 2021, 2022, and 2023. It’s clear that enterprise resource planning (ERP) software is now a key strategic focus for companies moving from critical IT spend to long-term growth initiatives.

Not all ERP systems are created equally, however. Your choice of ERP can significantly change the outcomes and ROI derived from ERP software investment. And that, in turn, has a profound impact on profitability.

Many growing businesses looking for the right ERP solution will often compare two well-known players: NetSuite vs MYOB Advanced. Read on for an in-depth look at the differences between these two ERP systems to understand which will support your business most effectively.

What is an ERP system?

The adage, “The whole is greater than the sum of its parts”, isn’t exactly as Aristotle first penned it. However, the original expression has changed over time and has become applicable to more than just metaphysics. For example, when applied to modern business management software, it describes ERP software perfectly.

Companies using multiple systems often end up with disjointed processes. For example, sales use one system and follow one process, finance follows another, customer service another, and so on. This process complexity becomes a roadblock when your company begins to scale its operations.

ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) is a single software application that manages all core functions of a company and its operations. When used effectively, it also helps companies operate more efficiently, profitably, and become much more than the sum of its parts.

An ERP system acts as the central source of truth. The application becomes the single back-end platform bringing together all core business functions. Inventory, CRM, sales and marketing, project management, HR, and more are managed within one ERP system.

What is NetSuite?

NetSuite is a cloud ERP system that enables companies to manage all core business functions within a single, cloud-based platform. The company was founded in 1998 by Evan Goldberg, with the backing of Oracle’s executive chairman Larry Ellison. Mr Goldberg is currently the Executive Vice President of Oracle NetSuite.

NetSuite is widely considered to be the first cloud computing software company and a pioneer of SaaS technology. The company’s 14,000+ employees support over 28,000 customers worldwide. NetSuite cloud software replaces basic accounting software that can limit business growth, streamlines operations, and delivers real-time visibility to make decisions more strategic and companies more efficient and profitable.

What is MYOB Advanced?

MYOB Advanced is a version of the Acumatica ERP system, modified for the Australian market. Acumatica was founded in 2008 by John Howell, Serguei Beloussov and Mike Chtchelkonogov. A small team of employees from Parallels were developing a billing solution platform and believed the technology was well suited to the ERP market. Mike Chtchelkonogov started the conversation to create a split company from Parallels, creating Acumatica to focus solely on ERP software.

The initial billing solution is now the Financial Management module of Acumatica, and the company currently has 350+ employees. According to some reports, Acumatica has between 6000 and 8000 customers, though it does not publish its customer numbers. Acumatica was acquired in 2019 by private equity fund EQT Partners. The company, which started in Moscow, Russia, has seen a relocation to rented headquarters in Northern Virginia, and then most recently to Bellevue, Washington.

NetSuite and MYOB Advanced features comparison

Feature Comparison MYOB Advanced NetSuite
Core Financials Yes Yes
Project Accounting Yes Yes
Inventory Management Yes Yes
Warehouse Management Yes Yes
CRM Yes Yes
eCommerce No Yes
Multi-currency, multi-language Yes Yes
Subsidiary Management Yes Yes
PSA No Yes
Support Company and partner Company and partner
Development Based on the Acumatica platform NetSuite-driven development
Upgrades Frequent minor upgrades with major upgrades once or twice per year Two defined major upgrades per year, each announced months in advance
Hosting Australian AWS servers Global NetSuite owned data centres with 2 x Australian data centres
Security
  • Distributed denial of service safeguards
  • End-to-end HTTPS encryption
  • Two-factor authentication
  • Continuous, dedicated security monitoring
  • Strong 256-bit encryption
  • Role-level access and idle disconnect
  •  Location-based IP address restrictions
  • Application-only access
  • Strong password rules
  • Two-factor authentication
Customisation API connectivity to integrate MYOB Advanced with other  applications. MYOB Marketplace also includes 70+ apps that integrate directly with MYOB Advanced. Limitless open API connectivity to integrate NetSuite with other applications. The NetSuite SuiteApp marketplace also includes 600+ apps that integrate directly with NetSuite.

Platform upgrades and enhancements

MYOB Advanced updates and enhancements

Based on Acumatica, MYOB Advanced states that it has frequent minor upgrades, delivered throughout the year according to an MYOB schedule. These upgrades generally do not result in system downtime, though may require downtime during a weekly maintenance window to implement. Major upgrades are stated to happen once or twice a year as advised by MYOB and are highly likely to result in downtime. Clients are also advised to confirm that any customisations, extensions, and add-ons operate as expected post-upgrade. Learn more about MYOB’s update process here.

The latest MYOB Advanced release 2022 R1 is set to include updates to the mobile user interface, Gl transaction validation, and reporting support for customers with entities in multiple countries. Read more about these updates here.

NetSuite updates and enhancements

NetSuite manages and controls the update and release process. The company publishes an in-depth guide for its 2 x scheduled major release updates per year. In addition, NetSuite’s technical experts thoroughly test all new and updated functionality. NetSuite also advises customers to test customisations and extensions for added certainty.

NetSuite’s 2022.1 release included major additions to cash flow visibility and management, project management, and warehouse operations efficiencies. Find out more about these Cash 360, Project 360 and warehouse updates here.

ERP vendor sustainability

When deciding on which ERP vendor is right for your needs, you should also consider long term vendor sustainability. Your chosen ERP will contain business-critical data across all core operations. Therefore, you want confidence that your data and the system housing it will be around for the life of your operations. Large, well-established software companies can bring added security and peace of mind to the management of your business data.

NetSuite began its operations in 1998 (the same year Google was founded) as a cloud ERP company. And it’s still going strong as the world’s leading cloud ERP vendor today.

“Oracle and NetSuite cloud applications are complementary, and will coexist in the marketplace forever,” said Mark Hurd, Chief Executive Officer, Oracle. “We intend to invest heavily in both products-engineering and distribution.”

“NetSuite will benefit from Oracle’s global scale and reach to accelerate the availability of our cloud solutions in more industries and more countries,” said Zach Nelson, Chief Executive Officer, NetSuite. “We are excited to join Oracle and accelerate our pace of innovation.”

And that’s precisely what has happened since Oracle’s acquisition of NetSuite. The company serves over 28,000 customers in more than 200 countries and is continually investing in keeping NetSuite ERP the first choice across the globe for growing companies.

Historically focussed on accounting and tax products for SMEs, MYOB launched its ERP solution, MYOB Advanced, in early 2015. As a modified version of the Acumatica ERP system, MYOB Advanced relies on continued development by the Acumatica team of 350+ employees.

Given that Acumatica came into the cloud ERP space a decade after NetSuite (2008 vs NetSuite’s 1998 foundations) and country-specific development of MYOB Advanced beginning in 2015, there’s a good deal of catching up to do. Whether the company can experience the same global expansion and longevity as NetSuite remains to be seen.

Weighing up suitability

ERP software is directly in the spotlight as companies move from business-critical IT investment to long-term growth initiatives in 2022. So now is the perfect time to put ERP vendors under the microscope and weigh up suitability for your specific business needs.

The implementation of an ERP is just as important as the software itself. When set up by a team of cloud technology experts, company-wide best-practice processes are put in place. This approach puts everyone on the same page, increases digital process efficiency, and creates a holistic solution that enables rapid scalability. Automation of repetitive tasks can then be built into finance, supply chain, sales and marketing, inventory, and more. Real-time visibility across all business operations also leads to faster, more accurate decision-making.

If you’re interested in a NetSuite ERP solution, get in touch with the experienced team at DWR to learn how an award-winning NetSuite partner can support your growth story this year.

DWR is an experienced cloud technology provider who brings the right ERP technology, process framework, and business experts together. Our team has executed 250+ projects with a reputation for delivering on time and budget. Our lasting relationships with customers are driven by our passion for consistently adding value to ERP implementations – new and existing.

Talk to a NetSuite ERP expert today. And take the next step to leap ahead.

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NetSuite ERP 2022.1 Release – Top 3 Business Growth Features

Allan O'Donnell
February 9th, 2022

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In 2022, rapid adaptation is critical to achieving lasting success. The world isn’t the same place it was a few years ago, and it’s continuing to evolve quickly. Fortunately for businesses, technology like NetSuite ERP can help them stay a step ahead of market changes – and their competition.

The 1990s were big for the tech industry. Linux, which runs internet servers and is the underlying platform of Android, was launched in 1991. Netflix was founded in 1997 and has since revolutionised how we consume entertainment content. And 1998 saw two cloud giants open their doors – Google and NetSuite.

As a company that’s been growing since the 90s, NetSuite has been through a significant evolution. This year, it continues its journey by helping its customers grow and adapt to ever-changing business needs. As an Australian NetSuite partner, the team of cloud experts at DWR are excited to see major updates in the upcoming 2022.1 release. Our team’s top priority is helping customers amplify success – now and in the long term. This update will further help us meet that priority and deliver even more value to every customer from their NetSuite ERP investment.

We’ll take a look at the top 3 highlights that will support business growth in a rapidly changing market. The release is packed with features to help your company better understand cash flow and financial forecasting. Project management and visibility also see substantial improvements. And, there’s a strong focus on boosting the efficiency of warehouse operations.

NetSuite cash flow and financial forecasting features

Cash flow has come into even greater focus since the pandemic hit. And while the immediate response of many CEOs and CFOs was to focus on financial survival, 2022 sees many moving from cash preservation to cash maximisation mindsets.

In uncertain times, additional cash flow can prevent a company’s financial resources from drying up. As Gary Wiessinger, SVP of product management at Oracle NetSuite, illustrates, “Insufficient cash flow is the main reason new businesses fail in the first five years, but despite it being such a critical area, many businesses struggle with cash management due to poor visibility and an inability to accurately forecast.”

Now, executives have more opportunities to manage and maximise cash effectively. NetSuite has recognised this and brings Cash 360 to the table. It’s an automated solution embedded within NetSuite that shows finance teams their cash balance, AP and AR in one real-time NetSuite dashboard. That single dashboard makes cash flow visibility crystal-clear, displaying current cash flow trends and a rolling six-month cash flow forecast that will enable more informed and agile decision-making.

“NetSuite Cash 360 turns a complex process into a simple one by giving customers everything they need to effectively manage cash flow to help ensure they have the cash reserves to maintain day-to-day operations, pay employees and suppliers, fund sales and marketing efforts, service debt, acquire capital equipment, and make other long-term investments.” Explains Wiessinger.

With Cash 360, accounting and FP&A (financial planning and analysis) teams can also add events including loan, asset purchase and receivables factoring, which are then added into the cash projection.

NetSuite also adds a new tool – Cash Flow Forecasting – which leverages multiple data points, including funding sources, planned expenditures, sales forecasts, and billing schedules to increase forecast accuracy. In addition, historical averages can be applied to current AR and AP transaction data to estimate collection and disbursement amounts.

Cash Flow Forecasting is a fully-configurable solution that allows companies to incorporate one-time cash inflows and outflows, like financing or capital investments, into the forecasting process. This improved flexibility creates a better projection of cash needs and greater clarity over the company’s liquidity position.

With greater clarity of cash flow and more accurate forecasting, NetSuite Cash 360 gives companies the financial confidence to focus on business growth initiatives.

Project management improvements to deliver projects on time and budget

For service companies that manage projects, visibility is key to keeping everything on track, billed, and managed correctly. Gary Wiessinger, SVP of product management at Oracle NetSuite, explains, “One of the biggest challenges facing services businesses is lack of visibility into project status, budget, and forecast, which hinders project managers’ ability to easily gauge project health and act if needed.”

NetSuite’s new Project 360 dashboard consolidates all project elements in a unified workspace. The dashboard delivers a real-time view of actuals vs budget, resource utilisation, and other crucial project KPIs. Exception alerts and focus pages for detailed KPI data further help project managers evaluate and make proactive adjustments to keep projects running efficiently. Consistent delivery of projects on time and budget is now more achievable than ever, especially when running multiple projects concurrently.

Wiessinger elaborates, “At NetSuite, we pride ourselves in delivering what we call ‘Suiteness’ for our customers, which is our unique ability to unify insights and actions across their entire business. Project 360 is a perfect example of this by providing customers with a unified view across projects, customers, employees, and financials, enabling project managers to be more proactive and take steps to keep projects on time and on budget.”

Additionally, Project 360 brings new, customisable invoice templates with line-item formatting to meet the specific needs of clients and projects. Granular backing sheets also include consultant time postings, subcontractor costs, and more. These customer-focused enhancements deliver greater project detail on invoices, leading to quicker approvals – and ultimately, faster payment.

Project 360 will help project managers to optimise projects through advanced project functions, including:

  • Project Budget Analysis – Project Managers can see if there’s sufficient remaining budget for project completion through spend and allocation analysis. Project Forecast Estimate at Completion (EAC) also calculates if project delivery will happen within the original budget.
  • Project Profitability – Analysis of whether profitability is being met on projects, taking recognised revenue and total costs to date into account.
  • Project Resourcing – New visualisations of project resources in a “social view” with names and images of the project team, and visualisation of the Gantt chart and time spent by resources against project assignment totals.
  • Project Billing – Project managers can easily correct and re-submit invoices to clients with a real-time view of currently billable and yet to be billed items.
  • Project Health and Status – Faster access to specific project health and status information, including billing and revenue, budgets, resourcing and planning, and financials.

Project 360 will help service companies build a robust reputation for delivering projects on time and budget, and in turn, grow their customer base more rapidly.

More efficient warehouse operations with new mobile enhancements

For wholesale distributors and inventory-carrying businesses, stock management across multiple locations with many SKUs can be a manually-intensive, often chaotic process. Relying on static spreadsheets can result in increased errors, splintered data, and a massive amount of manual work that slows down stock turn.

NetSuite’s Warehouse Management System (WMS) optimises operations through advanced automation and warehouse features, including mobile RF barcode scanning, putaway and picking strategies, cycle count plans, and more.

Zone pick and merge functionality is an exciting addition to NetSuite WMS in the 2022.1 release. As part of single or multi-order picking processes, pickers can be assigned to optimised zones, then merged for staging. The zone pick and merge function can increase flexibility for varying numbers of pickers, reduce picker movement and cut down redundant work.

Productivity is boosted with new capabilities to find and print time labels from any screen with NetSuite WMS and quickly see order and wave picking statuses. Paperless wave filtering and single actions to release multiple waves also speed up processing significantly.

Finally, NetSuite Pack Station improvements allow unit weights to be changed quickly between pounds or kilograms, boosting accuracy and efficiency. Packing operators can now also check packing instructions before starting packing. Additionally, bulk pack and unpack allows “Ship As Is” items and individually-shipped items to be selected for bulk packing.

With NetSuite WMS and NetSuite Pack Station improvements, companies can significantly boost the efficiency of warehouse operations, increase stock turn, and grow faster.

Have you made the leap?

Rapid adaptation is how many companies will achieve lasting success in 2022 and beyond. As an Australian NetSuite partner, the DWR team is looking forward to the 2022.1 release that will help customers grow their businesses faster and amplify long-term success.

It’s impossible to predict how the year ahead will look. However, the highlights mentioned in this feature update will help companies better understand cash flow and financial forecasting, gain better visibility and management of projects, and boost the efficiency of warehouse operations.

If you’re yet to invest in a NetSuite solution, get in touch to learn how an award-winning NetSuite partner can help build your growth story this year.

DWR is an experienced cloud technology provider who brings the right ERP technology, process framework, and business experts together. Our team has executed 250+ projects with a reputation for delivering on time and budget. Our lasting relationships with customers are driven by our passion for consistently adding value to ERP implementations – new and existing.

Talk to a NetSuite ERP expert today. And take the next step to leap ahead.

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Business Outlook 2022 – the Evolution of Digital Transformation

Allan O'Donnell
December 15th, 2021

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The past couple of years have been a business rollercoaster. Unexpected ups and downs had us hanging onto our seats at certain points. None of us were prepared for how COVID-19 would change the way we live and work in 2020.

Some businesses scrambled to continue operations amidst lockdowns and social distancing restrictions. Other companies, however, were already ahead of the curve. Those with cloud-based business systems responded to changes almost overnight. Workforces swiftly moved to remote work, and customers (in both the B2C and B2B spaces) connected with companies online.

Rapid digital adaptation became the priority in 2021. Remote and hybrid working environments were now familiar, but new challenges arose. As businesses everywhere transformed operations to meet customers’ expectations in the “new normal” of doing business, points of difference became less apparent. Companies with complex supply chains also felt the sting of disruptions and supply shortages. Continued lockdowns and restrictions in Australia caused product category demand shifts and unexpected spikes. Despite these complications, savvy companies already leveraging supply chain technologies like process automation and predictive demand were able to adapt and pivot strategies more rapidly.

The year ahead will bring an evolution of digital transformation that turns that business rollercoaster into a steady climb. Clever leaders have adopted and continue to drive digital transformation initiatives forward. They’ve realised it’s not just about keeping pace or implementing trend-driven solutions. With the proper business system framework, business leaders can significantly improve operational efficiency, reduce costs, and uncover new levels of long-term profitability.

Let’s dive into how digital transformation will evolve even further in 2022.

Digital infrastructure to meet customer expectations

Customers and consumers now expect to be transacting digitally and seeing real-time information as the “new norm” of doing business. As a result, companies of all sizes are under pressure to have the adequate digital infrastructure to support customer needs, leverage real-time data, and operate more efficiently (and profitably).

Unfortunately, the 2021 MIT Sloan Management Review Report found that only 7% of all companies were rated as being “digitally savvy”. On the upside, those companies outperformed peers by as much as 48% on revenue and valuation, as well as 15% on net margin. In addition, top “digitally savvy” companies were shown to generate 59% of revenue from innovations they introduced within a three-year period. That’s more revenue than they derived from cross-selling activities.

According to the Australian Government Digital Transformation Agency, Australia currently ranks second in the world for the effectiveness of our digital government services. So it’s not surprising that many Aussie companies are already far into their digital transformation journeys.

Omnichannel retailers

Australian retailers, for example, have quickly transformed service offerings into omnichannel strategies. This shift meets the new demand of consumers digitally finding and researching products available in physical stores, and using stores to see and touch products that are available online. CB Insights cites that 75% of shoppers are using multiple channels to find discounts, compare prices, or use in-store tablets to browse products online. Stores are also becoming distribution points for online orders with increased capabilities for online to in-store returns and BOPIS (buy now, pickup in-store).

Digitally-capable wholesalers

Wholesale distributors have also adapted rapidly. Wholesalers have realised they need to stand out from the crowd, and that they must meet evolving B2B customer expectations to remain competitive. As a result, wholesalers are now beefing up capabilities, including:

  • Online portals for wholesale customers to view live product, pricing, and stock information.
  • Business process automation (BPA) to do the heavy lifting of low-value tasks and return focus to customer experience initiatives.
  • Integration of CRM with sales and inventory systems (or the use of an end-to-end ERP systems) to manage communications, anticipate needs and deliver better customer experiences.

There’s still more to consider as part of a wholesale digital transformation strategy. Access your complimentary business guide, Digital Transformation: Helping Wholesale Distributors Emerge Stronger, for further ideas.

Fintech onboard the digital transformation train

JP Morgan chairman and CEO Jamie Dimon captured headlines in 2021 when he said his Wall Street management team should be “scared s___less” of the fintech threat. It seems many are catching on to the power of modern fintech with many C-Level execs keeping pace with digital change.

As the pandemic accelerated the shift from physical to digital, the fintech industry had to arm businesses with powerful digital tools and processes. Changing consumer behaviours and buying patterns heightened preferences for cashless and contactless payments. But this was just the start.

Companies now understand the benefits of marrying fintech and internal business systems. For example, NetSuite recently announced it was the first cloud ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) system to integrate fintech into its SuiteBanking function. SuiteBanking embeds fintech into a single cloud ERP application to automate key financial processes, improve forecasting, and make more strategic cash decisions.

Evan Goldberg, EVP, Oracle NetSuite explains, “At the core of it is AP and AR automation, accelerating productivity through efficiency, less entering of data, less dealing directly with the bank, less manual matching of transaction.

“Growing organisations cannot afford to have teams of people entering data, dealing with banks, monitoring transactions from multiple systems, and manually processing vendor payments. The time saved from automating these processes could be spent on strategic projects that help drive further growth for the organisation.”

In 2022, we’ll see an even faster evolution of fintech that focuses on less admin and more automation. And, we’ll see many more businesses using fintech in their digital transformation plans to generate a noticeable competitive advantage.

CFOs invested in digital transformation

CFOs in 2022 will prioritise selecting digital business systems with robust financial capabilities. Rather than choosing technologies based on market trends, CFOs will look to carefully define business and finance objectives and become an integral part of systems infrastructure decision-making.

Technology selection in 2022 will involve how digital systems measure, affect and improve key performance indicators (KPIs). Data and analytics will be key to understanding which digital processes need refining or reinventing.

Speaking of reinvention, the finance function has done precisely that in recent years. Oracle’s Agile Finance Unleashed report shows teams’ progress towards an agile finance operating model. This report demonstrates how leaders are evolving the finance function in response to digital processes and accelerating the adoption of new technologies.

Stand-out actions and qualities displayed by these digital finance leaders include:

  • Automation of transactional tasks throughout the record-to-report process.
  • Re-engineering of legacy finance processes to become more efficient.
  • The adoption of advanced analytics tools with a deeper understanding of which data holds the most value.
  • Actively working with other business units to improve business decision-making.
  • Becoming widely recognised by other stakeholders as having high commercial acumen and business understanding.

CFOs are in a unique position to show the value of digital transformation initiatives. According to Gartner’s CFO Leadership Vision 2022 report, 76% of finance leaders say decision-makers increasingly have access to business operations and performance data through systems/providers outside of finance. Moreover, with the pace of digital reliance accelerating over the past couple of years, finance leaders will be driving digital transformation strategies in 2022 and beyond.

Democratisation of data and analytics

Democratisation is all about making data and analytics accessible to everyone, regardless of technical or IT know-how. With greater access, there’s no waiting around for one gatekeeper to run reports or bottlenecks to endure. A crucial part of democratisation is making that data easy for everyone to understand, use it to make better business decisions, and uncover new opportunities the business can leverage. Everyone should be able to work with data comfortably, have confidence talking about it, and make more informed decisions.

To leverage collective business experience and make confident, agile decisions, companies need to plan their transformation of data around key factors, including:

Access

To respond quickly to changes, business teams need faster access to data. Companies have realised that cloud-based software is a must-have for distributed and remote workforces. More than just supporting remote working, access to information is also the foundation of predicting and adjusting to rapid market changes.

Reporting

Some businesses still rely on key business users to run reports, consolidate with static spreadsheets, and distribute manually to stakeholders. It’s an ageing process that results in outdated information by the time it’s received and can’t support truly agile decision-making. Live reporting that’s accessible on-demand is now a requirement for businesses wanting to scale.

Interpretation and action

While business users generally have some level of data access and reporting, easily understanding that information is where things can come undone. Stakeholders now need low-touch, automated ways to see and compare reports, snapshots and KPIs, with the ability to drill down to more specific data when required. Well-presented data that requires little manual intervention will support decision-makers in taking action – quickly and confidently.

Systems

Many businesses simply don’t have the tools to see, understand, and action data. ERP (enterprise resource planning) software provides one back-end platform that brings together all core business functions. Inventory, CRM, sales and marketing, project management, HR, and more are managed within one business application. Cloud ERP options can also connect seamlessly via API to any external system, while still building the one source of truth for all critical data.

Additionally, a cloud ERP system manages secure, role-based access to business data regardless of where users are physically located. This role-based access ensures users see what’s relevant to their role without overloading them.

NetSuite is one cloud ERP system that uses an open API to consolidate data from any other system in real-time. Business users gain secure access and can clearly understand business trends, changes, and key data with live dashboards. Reports, snapshots, and KPIs are accessible from one screen, allowing decision-makers to assess and take action immediately.

Over the past couple of years, we’ve seen how unexpected changes can happen overnight. Instant, company-wide availability of data will be imperative in 2022. So, where’s the best place to start? Talk to a cloud technology expert about how an ERP platform creates the framework for your data and analytics transformation.

Technology partners that empower digital transformation

Working with the right technology partner is just as important as having your digital transformation strategy adequately planned out. An experienced partner can enhance and add value to your digital transformation through:

  • Identification of optimal outcomes for your business type and industry.
  • A deep understanding of transformation, having managed the end-to-end process for many other customers.
  • A strong focus on short and long-term outcomes that align with your business objectives.
  • Being the catalyst for your transformation journey, accelerating and keeping your business changes on track.
  • Long-term accountability and support. A true technology partner will be there for you, well beyond your initial stages of transformation to ensure additional value is realised over time.

DWR delivers the tools to amplify success; by bringing the right cloud ERP technology, process framework, and team of business experts together. The team has executed 250+ technology projects on time and to budget. DWR forms lasting relationships with customers, consistently looking for ways to add value to new and existing implementations.

Talk to an ERP expert at DWR. They’ll give you the advice and ideas you need to build a core digital infrastructure that enables faster, more successful digital transformation. Take the next step to leap ahead.

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Technologies Enabling Digital Transformation and Business Innovation

Allan O'Donnell
November 9th, 2021

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The global pandemic accelerated technology adoption trends by several years. All sectors and regions were forced to adapt and evolve how they did business. Social distancing meant that face-to-face meetings became digital. Companies selling to consumers had to meet new buyer expectations, and B2B sales strategies shifted dramatically.

Infrastructure and capability changes that happened over a relatively short period will be here for the long haul. According to McKinsey, only 20% of B2B buyers say they hope to return to in-person sales. Additionally, around 70% – 80% of B2B decision-makers prefer remote interaction and digital self-service. These figures make sense when you consider reduced travel expenses, easier scheduling, and a more focused work-life balance that’s now preferred by many.

The world has changed, and technology now provides the platform to evolve business operations and gain a lasting competitive advantage.

What is digital transformation?

Technologies-Enabling-Digital-Transformation-Business-ProcessesDigital transformation (DX) is the move from analog to digital processes. But it’s also much more than that, encompassing:

  • The technology you use
  • How and where data is stored
  • Your business’ operational processes
  • The way you bring systems and employees together
  • How your company adapts to market changes

A well-planned digital transformation strategy allows you to leverage digital technologies to create or modify business processes. These changes support evolving business goals, bring efficiency and improve customer value. The value to customers isn’t always immediately apparent but can range from creating better customer experiences that increase loyalty to streamlining internal processes to help companies serve their customers more effectively.

AI

Big data is a growing opportunity (and a challenge) for many companies. According to Statista, the amount of data collected is expanding rapidly – from 2 zettabytes (2 billion terabytes) to an estimated 181 zettabytes globally by 2025.

Technologies-Enabling-Digital-Transformation-AIBig data refers to data that is so extensive and complex that it’s extremely difficult to understand and process using traditional means. AI, however, is changing how big data is processed and used.

Data can only create a competitive advantage if that data makes sense and aligns with effective digital processes. AI combines big data with intelligent algorithms and uses fast, iterative processing to learn from patterns within that data.

AI is enabling businesses to gain better insights and drive more efficient operations across the company. These efficiency gains include:

  • Improved financial risk analysis
  • Cash flow predictions
  • Customer lifetime value estimations
  • Likelihood of customer repeat business
  • Supply chain problem and solution identification

And the list goes on. Data is the new gold, and AI using that data allows companies of all sizes to gain real-time insights and predictive analysis. The digital transformation opportunities are significant, with AI driving more informed strategic decisions.

5G

Technologies-Enabling-Digital-Transformation-5GIn Q1 and Q2 of 2021 alone, global 5G connections increased 41% from 305 million to 429 million. It’s clear the world is accessing more data, and people want it faster than ever before.

As many companies were forced to work remotely during COVID-19, they realised the need for high-speed data access. In addition, many companies returning to hybrid remote and in-office environments now need seamless continuation of fast data to support their workforces.

5G brings speeds 10x faster than existing 4G technology – and it’s this speed that makes it an emerging technology driving digital transformation. When switching from an in-office environment to being out on the road or working remotely, accessing your business data and systems at consistent speeds helps employees maintain their productivity.

Cloud computing

References to “cloud computing” have been documented as early as 1996, with the first known mention in a Compaq internal document. Cloud computing has since become the great business equaliser. It used to be that only enterprise organisations could afford the on-premise server, data and backup equipment needed to run sophisticated business applications. Over the years, cloud-based applications have become mainstream, bringing the same technology large corporations use to companies of all sizes.

Technologies-Enabling-Digital-Transformation-Cloud-ComputingThe list of benefits that businesses realise from cloud computing is extensive. A few of the highlights include:

Reduced setup and maintenance costs
Implementation of cloud solutions is much faster than traditional on-premise applications, which cuts down the services component. There’s also no costly server equipment or expert resources needed to maintain them. Updates happen automatically in the background, so there’s no system downtime or update costs involved.

Rapid scalability
The moment you need to meet increased customer and transactional demand, it’s available. Licensing allows you to grow and reduce your infrastructure requirements as needed without purchasing or setting up additional equipment.

Speed and performance
Speed to market can bring significant competitive advantage. Cloud solutions allow you to add applications, functionality, and new features faster and see ROI sooner. Cloud providers also have extensive resources available, which can be added quickly to account for system user increases, website traffic surges, and other demand spikes. Cloud solutions keep performance optimised regardless of changing requirements, unlike on-premise options where hardware needs to be added to keep up.

Security
Cloud applications place massive importance on security. NetSuite, for example, employs robust 256-bit encryption and password protocols, IP address restrictions, and idle disconnection. The company even uses role-based access with complete system audit trails to ensure users only see and work on business data that’s relevant to them. Most companies with critical business data on a server in their back-office don’t come anywhere near this level of protection.

Reliability
Cloud software providers generally have data redundancy measures in place. Business data is stored in multiple server locations to ensure data is kept safe no matter what happens in one geography.

Businesses gaining the most value from cloud platforms view the implementation as a digital transformation. Critical aspects of this transformation include:

  • Understanding how and where a cloud infrastructure can increase productivity, deliver better customer outcomes, and ultimately boost operating profit.
  • Creating or modifying business processes that complement cloud-based infrastructure.
  • Selecting cloud technology platforms that support the business’ goals and are a long-term solution.

Cloud ERP systems

Blog-Why-ERP-is-the-foundation-what-is-an-ERPWhen implemented correctly, a cloud ERP system isn’t just another application in your technology stack. Instead, it’s a foundation for your business that creates a framework of flexible digital processes.

Companies using multiple systems often end up with disjointed processes. For example, sales use one system and follow one process, finance follows another, customer service another, and so on. This process complexity becomes a roadblock when your company begins to scale its operations.

Cloud ERP software acts as the central source of truth. The application becomes the single back-end platform bringing together all core business functions. Inventory, CRM, sales and marketing, project management, HR, and more are managed within one ERP system.

The implementation of an ERP is just as important as the software itself. When set up by a team of cloud technology experts, company-wide best-practice processes are put in place. This approach puts everyone on the same page, increases digital process efficiency, and creates a holistic solution that enables rapid scalability. Automation of repetitive tasks can then be built into finance, supply chain, sales and marketing, inventory, and more. Real-time visibility across all business operations also leads to faster, more accurate decision-making.

See our 90-second explainer video about ERP systems for more information.

API connectivity

An application programming interface (API) is an interface built above an application that allows other applications to access, modify, and create data. As revealed in the 2021 Mulesoft Connectivity Report, 34% of companies say legacy IT infrastructure and systems are their main challenge to digital transformation. The integration of applications made possible by APIs overcomes this challenge to connect systems and enable digital transformation across the business.

Technologies-Enabling-Digital-Transformation-APIAPIs can be used in an almost limitless number of ways to improve system and process efficiency. From end to end workflow automation to building better customer experiences, APIs connect your technology touchpoints and allow you to continually expand your digital strategy.

Cloud ERP systems like NetSuite include native API functionality. This allows you to connect seamlessly to any external system while still building the one source of truth for all critical business data within your core ERP solution.

Work with the right technology partner to empower your digital transformation

Working with the right technology partner is just as important as developing the optimal business transformation strategy.

When it comes to cloud ERP systems, an experienced ERP partner will become a critical part of your digital transformation journey. They will take the time to understand your business goals and tailor a solution that focuses on the outcomes. This type of partnership, like a digital transformation strategy, is long-term and can continue providing value well into the future.

DWR delivers the tools to amplify success; by bringing the right cloud ERP technology, process framework, and team of business experts together. The team has executed 250+ projects on time and to budget. The cloud ERP experts form lasting relationships with their customers, consistently looking for ways to add value to new and existing implementations.

Talk to an ERP expert at DWR. They’ll give you the advice and ideas you need to build a core digital infrastructure that enables your digital transformation. Take the next step to leap ahead.

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NetSuite: First Cloud ERP to Integrate Fintech with SuiteBanking

Allan O'Donnell
October 25th, 2021

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Oracle NetSuite has just announced SuiteBanking – the first unified suite that embeds fintech into a cloud ERP system. SuiteBanking helps customers improve forecasting and make more strategic cash decisions by automating key financial processes and providing full visibility into cash flow.

SuiteBanking brings together automated accounts payable (AP) and accounts receivable (AR) processes, making it fast and easy to pay bills, send invoices, and get paid – all from within the one core ERP platform, NetSuite.

NetSuite-SuiteBanking-Announcement-Evan-Goldberg“Growing organisations cannot afford to have teams of people entering data, dealing with banks, monitoring transactions from multiple systems, and manually processing vendor payments. The time saved from automating these processes could be spent on strategic projects that help drive further growth for the organisation,” said Evan Goldberg, EVP, Oracle NetSuite. “SuiteBanking is the first step in bringing the worlds of ERP and fintech together. It will help our customers automate all of these processes in one single suite and increase visibility and control so they can maintain healthy cash flow as they grow.”

The key to realising significant time savings for finance teams is in removing the need to collect and normalise data from other departments and applications. Teams can now save dozens of hours every month and do more with fewer resources. The enhanced automation of SuiteBanking delivers better expense control, effectiveness of accounting processes, and more detailed insights, all from the one system. Cash flow is accelerated through enhanced AP and AR processes.

Leading international bank, HSBC, is the first SuiteBanking alliance partner to jump onboard with this exciting fintech innovation. Integration with banking partners will give NetSuite customers convenient access to a wide variety of financial services, including a global digital wallet and virtual payment card.

“At the core of it is AP and AR automation, accelerating productivity through efficiency, less entering of data, less dealing directly with the with the bank, less manual matching of transaction.”

With SuiteBanking, NetSuite customers are able to improve the following cash flow processes:

  • Accounts Payable: Helps customers accelerate accounts payable processes with automated invoice scanning and general ledger code assignment, three-way invoice matching, and automated outbound payments. Customers can see multiple payment options and select the preferred method for each vendor. For example, they can choose either the fastest or the least expensive option.
  • Accounts Receivable: Helps customers increase on-time payments, reduce days sales outstanding, and improve the efficiency of billing staff. The new Payment Link feature makes it easier for customers to receive payment by including a “pay now” option on electronic invoices. Multiple payment methods are supported, including credit/debit card, ACH transfer, or a third-party payment provider like PayPal. In addition, customers can automate the creation and scheduling of invoices and increase collections by sending payment reminders automatically.

Goldberg also revealed, “There’s a full portal called MyAccount, which lets them manage all of their invoices and other information that resides in NetSuite, 24×7, on the web.”

  • Bank Reconciliation: Helps customers eliminate manual, error-prone, and time-consuming tasks and accurately match transactions with their organization’s bank account. Customers gain improved cash flow visibility through real-time insight into the status of inbound and outbound payments. In addition, customers are able to increase the accuracy of accounting data by matching and reconciling cleared transactions more often and are able to gain a better understanding of their current cash position so they know how much cash is available in their accounts at all times.
  • Spend Management: Helps customers control corporate spend through better visibility and reporting capabilities. It enables customers to create approval workflows to fit their organization’s structure and customise expense policy rules to flag expenses that need a manager’s review. In addition, budget validation capabilities help managers avoid overspending by automatically comparing open purchase requests to available budget and alerting to potential budget overages prior to approval. Budget versus actuals reporting also helps managers control spending by comparing actual expenses against budgets in real time.
  • Expense Management: Helps customers control costs, enforce internal policies and procedures, and improve the timeliness and accuracy of employee expense reports. Customers can pay vendors that accept credit cards directly out of NetSuite via their SuiteBanking virtual payment card, which extends payment terms and relieves cash flow. Customers can also better manage business expenses by using the virtual card to cover employee expenses or corporate credit card charges. Expenses are captured and submitted electronically and automatically flow into NetSuite, eliminating double entry and accounting errors. In addition, customers receive cash back rewards on all transactions when using the virtual card to make payments.
  • International Payments: Provides customers with a global digital wallet to make and accept payments from a single account, utilizing HSBC’s global footprint and presence in more than 60 countries, instead of using country-specific payment providers that result in separate AP processes. This makes it easy for customers to make and receive international payments and removes the complexities of opening and managing multiple foreign bank accounts.
  • Access to Working Capital: Helps improve cash flow by giving customers a convenient way to convert unpaid invoices into cash. NetSuite enables quick, convenient access to additional working capital with accounts receivable financing.

Learn more about amplifying your success with innovative ERP technology, implemented by an award-winning NetSuite partner.

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NetSuite Technology

Why ERP is the Foundation of Business Growth

Allan O'Donnell
July 14th, 2021

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How strong are your business’ foundations?

In building construction, the foundation does the hard work. It must be strong enough to support the whole structure. And, it needs to withstand external forces such as the building’s load and internal forces such as stresses placed on the structure.

Every business has external and internal forces acting against it.

Throughout COVID-19 many companies felt the load of restrictions and economic uncertainty adding stress to the business structure. However, those with solid foundations stood a much better chance against tumultuous conditions.

A company is built on its business management software, its processes, and its people. An ERP system links all of these aspects together to create a strong foundation for your business growth.

What is an ERP system?

Blog-Why-ERP-is-the-foundation-what-is-an-ERPERP software (Enterprise Resource Planning) isn’t exactly a memorable acronym. The outcomes it creates, however, aren’t easily forgotten. ERP is essentially business management software that helps companies become more scalable, mobile, and profitable. It gives you clarity across all business operations that leads to faster, more accurate decision-making.

How does ERP work?

ERP provides one back-end platform that brings together all core business functions. Inventory, CRM, sales and marketing, project management, HR, and more are managed within one business application. Cloud ERP options can also connect seamlessly via API to any external system, while still building the one source of truth for all critical business data. See our 90-second explainer video about ERP systems for more information.

The original problem solver

Companies running multiple, disconnected systems will recognise some of these common problems:

  • Complex and disjointed processes begin to inhibit business growth
  • Time is spent on manual, repetitive low-value tasks
  • Financial decisions being made reactively on data that may be days or weeks old
  • Difficulty anticipating demand and adjusting to fluctuations
  • Poor visibility of the customer experience – and potential issues

How ERP solves business problems

Blog-Why-ERP-is-the-foundation-problem-solvingWhen implemented correctly, an ERP system isn’t another piece of software. Instead, it’s a foundation for your business that creates a solid framework of flexible processes. ERP becomes the lens through which you can clearly see your business operations, what’s working and what needs improvement.

The use of multiple systems often leads to disjointed processes. For example, sales follow one process, finance follows another, and so on. This process complexity becomes a significant roadblock when a company begins to scale its operations. Because an ERP system acts as the central source of truth, the implementation of company-wide best-practice processes happens during setup. With everyone on the same page, efficiency increases, and your company becomes quickly scalable.

If you’re in the growth phase, you may also notice the amount of time spent on low-value, manual tasks. ERP reduces this by automating repetitive tasks throughout supply chain, finance, sales and marketing, and more. Read more about how a NetSuite ERP system can automate tasks across the business.

ERP also gives you valuable, future-focused insights. Knowledge is power, as they say, and these insights are what create strong business growth. Just a few of these to touch on include:

Financial insights

The faster you can identify any adverse trends or unexpected changes, the sooner you can switch gears to minimise the impact. An ERP system brings together data from across the business into one system. Financial data from all operations can be related and reported on to power more informed decision-making.

CFOs and finance staff gain live visibility on any number of financial reports, consolidated onto role-based dashboards. These reports can be adjusted to any timeframe and filtered to any criteria as needed. For example, how is profitability for NSW vs VIC? How about the costs associated with a department this month vs last month? It’s all available at the click of a button. Reports can even be scheduled to arrive in an email inbox each morning to speed up your everyday workflow.

Stock and inventory insights

Blog-Why-ERP-is-the-foundation-stock-and-inventoryControl over warehouse operations is imperative for any growing business, and this is another area where ERP shines. With one system to understand sales demand, backorder and supply time, warehousing across multiple locations, and more, ERP brings control and visibility to make operations much more efficient. Purchasing, receipting, warehousing and sales demand all speak the same language with all information updated in real-time.

Live stock and warehouse performance information help you make fast decisions and stop potential stock-outs from happening. Stock differences between order and supply are also immediately visible, reducing the risk of impacting customer orders down the line.

The increased stock visibility lets you minimise the impact of unexpected changes. For example, when order demand fluctuates or supply delays happen, real-time reporting and tailored alerts help you react quickly. Automation also keeps you one step ahead with the ability to set min and max stock levels to manage supply better.

These features work together to improve warehouse operations, boost profitability and provide a better customer experience with faster supply times and fewer out-of-stock items.

Customer experience insights

Customers have more than one touchpoint with your company. It’s therefore vital to understand the customer experience across all touchpoints and the feedback various departments may be given. ERP includes robust CRM (Customer Relationship Management) functionality that provides 360-degree tracking and reporting on customer activity and experiences.

Does your marketing team know when customers receive consistently excellent customer service and when to approach them for case studies? Does your sales team know the last NPS scoring or when a missing order might flag an opportunity to show some extra care? All departments gain much better insight into the customer experience with a centralised system – at all touchpoints. So your organisation knows, as a whole, what the customer experience looks like and how to continuously improve it.

Start building the right foundations now

Blog-Why-ERP-is-the-foundation-start-buildingEveryone should be equipped to amplify their success; this starts with strong foundations to support continuous business growth. If you’re re-evaluating the strength of your current business systems, it’s the right time to consider ERP software.

It’s easy to feel overwhelmed when researching new business systems. There are a lot of options out there and even a lot of ERP systems. NetSuite is one option that’s used by over 26,000 customers worldwide and has 2 x local data centres in Australia. NetSuite is also an ERP solution with heavy ongoing investment by Oracle, which means continued improvements and development.

Regardless of the ERP platform you choose, the implementation process is critical to maximising value from your investment. There’s no such thing as a “one size fits all” business model, so an ERP system should fit your individual business needs. The right technology partner for an ERP implementation will take the time to understand your current systems and processes and create a tailored implementation plan that’s right for your company.

Take the next step to leap ahead

DWR delivers the tools to amplify success; by bringing the right ERP technology, process framework, and team of business experts together.

Take the next step now and have a chat with an ERP expert about your individual business needs.