As a wholesaler distributor, you are the go-between of the manufacturer and retailer. You shop large quantities of products at a lower price point and resell them to retailers or other businesses.
This positions you to be in a constant state of flux and because of this, your business may face several challenges and pain points. And this can affect the flow of distribution and revenue. The blockages causing pain and slowing down the flow for wholesalers vary from one wholesale business to another. There are however, a few common pains.
From the difficulty of maintaining an ongoing balanced inventory to meet demands, to the challenge of keeping everyone in your team connected, communicating, and coordinated in their workflow – to deliver the product and keep the customer happy. Implementing new processes and technologies can also pose new roadblocks and resistance for an already busy or stressed team. Companies need to experiment with and find new and creative ways during these especially tumultuous times to flow easily with these fluctuations in the marketplace.
These more efficient ways of managing your warehouse, harmonizing your team communication and keeping workflows in synch should be manageable from anywhere and at any time to keep their business running. We will have a look at these challenges and propose suggestions at how they can be fixed to make room for better productivity and increased revenue. So, what can lessen these pains?
Efficiency in Inventory Management
The first pain-causing blockage is often inefficient inventory management in the warehouse. As your business practices change and evolve with the marketplace, you may realize that you do not have the right tools to keep track of a fast-moving inventory. Where it once was easier to be aware of what is coming in and what is going out, now you need to know in real time at the click of a button. You may have an antiquated system, or no real system to speak of. You may be running into problems like having overstocked one product, and find yourself in short supply of another product in demand. There are imbalances in what you have on hand to ship and what you do not.
Your solution is to optimize the efficiency in your warehouse with a platform that gives you constant access to real-time data flow to manage inventory and orders rapidly. All your system’s data must be consolidated and accessible particularly at peak times of the year. The same is also true during your slower seasons, so you can apply whatever adjustments you require to balance out your inventory as you move through each quarter.
Second is the all too familiar communication breakdown. The more links in the chain of warehouses and distribution centres you have to cater to, the worse it can get. Even with the best customer service representation, poor communications and important order information falling through the cracks can be critical to your business.
Maintaining a connection between team members, especially when many of your staff work remotely, can be challenging. You may even be dealing with various currencies and time zones and working across several platforms. Important messages by phone or email may not get to the right contact at the right time, and follow-up might be difficult. You have no way of tracking who within your group dealt with an issue or what person has the correct and latest information about an account, a shipment or a customer.
Your solution is to harmonize your team’s communications. A well-integrated ERP system will provide you with the support you need in real time across many locations—keeping everyone on the same page in any time zone.
Next, we must look at workflows and where they may be out of synch. If you are experiencing a backlog of orders, the problem might be with your inventory or something else in your process. Either way, if the workflow is not running smoothly, goods are not reaching their destination quickly. Inevitably, you risk affecting your customer relationships and, therefore, your bottom line. You are likely also selling through multiple channels, and if your workflow is not well coordinated, this will cause you other pains.
Seamless workflow rules for sales and purchase orders must be kept in synch. Keep it all running together smoothly and consistently with an ERP that has been customized to work with your business and team.
When considering the transition to a new system that will save you time and money, such as an ERP, you may have questions about finding an affordable one – a system that always allows for remote access for your whole team. But other pains are cause for concern around implementation, you may also find some resistance from your team challenged by learning a new system with little time to do it. This investment of time and resources is also why some companies wait too long to implement a new system, causing them still more pain!
When onboarding a new system, you want a team of seasoned experts who will be there to suggest the best options for your team. They should provide thorough training, be a resource to answer questions and help you troubleshoot whatever issue comes up.
There is a Solution
So there is a solution. Spire ERP specializes in inventory management that aggregates information from your accounting and sales along with your warehouse. An all-in-one system that will simplify your wholesale business by combining accounting, sales, and inventory management. Cencomp, a Spire partner, can help you make a seamless transition to an affordable ERP system.
It is a robust system with room for integrations such as Microsoft EDI, E-Commerce, and more. Spire will also allow you to easily link your purchase orders to work orders and provide you with advanced detailed reporting options to suit your wholesale business and offer a complete view of your finances in just a few clicks. Customize your Spire ERP to work for you in the ways you need it to work!
Cencomp, has you covered when it comes to implementing and training to help you to get the most from your new ERP software. You will benefit from years of experience and the knowledge of experts who are happy to provide the training and support needed to ease the learning curve that inevitably comes with working with any new system.
Spire can help you run a better business with a more efficient and accurate platform. Reduce the pains and blocks and allow your wholesale business to flow with greater ease, mobility, and profits.
Talk to a Spire Expert at Cencomp today! Try it for free!