Informed decision-making and being armed with the correct data and information is essential for any business. Modern business management software can make a huge difference to your immediate and long-term goals and KPIs, and help give you the insights you need to make both on-the-spot and long-term business decisions.
Leveraged by the right people, an ERP system can be an invaluable tool in facilitating improved business decision making. It lets you and your teams access the right data at the right times, which is what making intelligent business decisions ultimately hinges on.
In this post, we’ll look at some of the key ways you can use business management software like ERP to improve strategic decision making.
How to use business management software to support strategic decision-making
To progress and improve a business, you must have a clear vision of how things currently work, what can be improved, and how.
Business management software can assist with this. Providing a singular source of information and real-time data, the right management platform is the ultimate decision-making partner – giving you the insights you need to refine and control your strategy.
Here are some essential ways you can use business management software to aid strategic decision-making within your business.
1. Utilise a centralised database
Having a single, centralised point of truth from which to validate and support your decision-making is one of the biggest advantages of using an ERP system. Storing all your data in a single location as opposed to disparate systems brings greater consistency and accuracy, giving you the confidence that the information you’re basing decisions on is accurate and complete.
ERP software guarantees greater data consistency, accuracy and security, with no need to rely on manual entry or labour-intensive data processing. It leaves less room for human error, which can improve the accuracy of your data and allow it to be used more effectively for strategic decision making.
Holding key data that is easy to understand and access can also persuade stakeholders to give the green light to strategic decisions for business improvements. If a sign-off is the only thing required to push an idea further along, then metrics can help you get there.
Whether you use big data or real-time financial reporting to improve your strategic decision-making, business management software gives you greater confidence and reassurance that the data you’re using is reliable, accurate and complete.
Find out more about the benefits of having a centralised single database.
2. Improve collaboration and communication
Collaboration between departments is key to improving decision making. With access to real-time data and the status of key processes, collaboration between departments is more likely to happen. Everyone is sharing the same information and accessing valuable insights from different teams within your business, so this helps them in making more informed decisions.
For example, your credit control team can highlight in red any customer who hasn’t paid so that your sales personnel can be made aware, at the point of sale, that a particular customer’s account is not up to date if they try to purchase more from you.
When you have access to a quick flow of information, it can help your team efficiently solve queries and aid interdepartmental collaboration. By centralising databases, omnichannel data collation and retrieval become far easier, and everyone is well-informed about the areas that are key to the business’ long-term strategy and success.
3. Automate processes
Save time and effort by automating as many processes as possible. Today’s ERP and business management systems allow you to set up user-specific reports, workflows and alerts to streamline countless tasks.
With the right controls and business rules in place, you can set these alerts and workflows to authorise, prevent, warn, protect, highlight, confirm and extend tasks using solutions such as Intact Nexus. This helps channel the important, relevant information and actions to you and your team, aiding on-the-spot decision making.
4. Personalise end-user screens
With the clever use of business management software workflows, alerts, and business intelligence tools, you can really take away the noise from your daily tasks, so nothing distracts you from what needs to be done – or the strategic decisions that need to be made.
The use of tailored end-user screens and menus means you can configure your system to allow users priority access to the functions they require on a daily basis. This facilitates streamlining processes within your business and provides end users with job-related screens/menus – making it easier for them to make decisions that matter most to their role. It also enforces your company’s policies and processes across all departments.
So, by customising user screens and taking away distractions, you have more efficient and productive staff making decisions based on up-to-date, real-time data. You are essentially negating the need for them to search for the information they need.
5. Rely on REST API integrations
As you’re probably aware, one of the key benefits of using ERP software is the scalability and bespoke configuration options it affords. Integrating with other services and applications via REST APIs, for example, is rapidly becoming one of the most effective ways to augment the capabilities of your system and ensure it’s delivering insights that support your strategic decision making.
REST API integrations can seamlessly connect your ERP system to a wide range of additional apps and platforms. That means your team can manage all manner of day-to-day operations and processes from a single location – which is great news for efficiency and productivity, as well as the top-level decision-making process.
6. Improve customer behaviour analysis
Business management tools like CRM and business intelligence software support enhanced customer behaviour analysis using various methods. By providing a broad range of data-driven insights, they pave the way for well-informed assumptions regarding customer purchasing intentions. In turn, this can support other aspects of day-to-day management, such as stock control and marketing, alongside allowing the business to improve future decision making.
By using business management software to improve how you analyse customer data, you’ll be well placed to make strategy improvements that better target the wants and needs of your customers.
7. Centralised reporting
Centralised reporting can provide management and stakeholders with accurate departmental reports to help steer the business in the right direction for decision-making. Keeping everything in one place effectively aggregates data across multiple platforms into one reporting function.
At Intact, we offer advanced business management solutions designed to simplify your day-to-day operations, including fully integrated software systems supporting strategic decision-making. For more information or to explore the products and services we offer, visit the homepage.