It’s something that business owners say all the time: “We’re fine with what we are doing now. We don’t need an ERP. Yet.” However, in many cases, employees and finance professionals may seriously disagree. It’s a balancing act, but how do you know when your business has outgrown QuickBooks and when you need to move on to an ERP?
The truth is, it depends. The only sure thing is that it will come to a point where QuickBooks is just not fulfilling all of your business needs, and it is time to look at setting up a custom ERP. Here are a few signs you might be outgrowing QuickBooks.
You’re Growing (And Want to Keep Growing)
One of the signs you need an ERP is rapid growth. Often QuickBooks just can’t keep up, and if you see growth happening, it is better to make a proactive change than to make one when your business just can’t operate any more in them.
This is the kicker: good implementation of even a simple ERP can take six months or more, and it demands at least part of your time and energy. Waiting too long means you will be working at a distinct disadvantage for the time it takes to get your ERP up and running. What does that mean to you?
It means don’t wait too long. As soon as you are in a rapid period of growth, or even see it start, set yourself up to implement an ERP. The headache and money you will save yourself down the road will make it worth it.
You’re Doing Many Things Manually
Are you making a lot of manual entries? Are you manually transferring data from your CRM to other documents or programs? If the answer is yes, then you are probably ready for or overdue for an ERP.
Think of it this way: all of those manual entries take time, and time is money. You are paying someone to do that if you are not wasting your own time doing it yourself, and that time could be better spent elsewhere.
Manual entries also increase frustration for both you and your employees. They increase the potential for errors and mistakes, and they take valuable efforts from more important work. If you are doing a lot of things manually, it is time for an ERP.
You Have Too Many Spreadsheets
There are way too many companies who suffer wounding and even death by too many spreadsheets. Files can be lost or corrupted, entries forgotten and remembering where certain data is can be frustrating and even result in costly mistakes.
The truth is, spreadsheets are good for some things, not so great for others. Too many can really slow your processes down, in the long run, cutting into your profits. The best solution is a custom ERP, one designed for your industry and your company.
You Need More Financial Visibility
This is where things get tricky. With many industries, financial visibility is a must, and it gets more critical the more growth you experience. With the combination of QuickBooks, a bunch of spreadsheets and even a CRM, you are not integrating those things for better visibility.
This can be driving your accounting department and other professionals mad. When you need more financial visibility, it is time for an ERP. For many industries, this means early adoption of overall process automation.
You Have Complex Reporting
Again, the larger you get the more critical this is, but also the more regulated the industry you are in, the more this matters. Reporting is often critical to business success, and the more departments and C-suite personnel, the more reports you need to be able to create.
But it’s about more than that. Complex reporting also can impact how you are using your data to be more efficient and profitable. Beyond the requirements of your business or industry is the simple need to make data-driven decisions, and an ERP makes that all possible.
You Need Tighter Internal Controls
When a startup is first developing, it is like a little family. Everyone knows everyone, and trust is high. However, as you grow, there are more people you have hired that you need to keep an eye on processes. It is not just a matter of trust, but also of uniformity and predictability.
That is where an ERP comes in. It makes standardizing processes and controlling them much easier. A good, custom ERP will scale with you, handling new issues as they arise. Once these controls are in place, it gives you and your team a certain peace of mind.
Think you might be outgrowing your QuickBooks? If you think you might be, you probably are ready to start developing and looking at an ERP. That’s where we come in. Here at SixtySixTen, we provide custom business solutions based on your needs and desires. Give us a call today for a free consultation. We’d be happy to talk with you.
About The Author: Marawan Aziz
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