ABM Advisor: The ABM Blog.
Showing News Filtered By Date from: 2017-09-01 - 2017-09-30

  • Sep 29 2017

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    Good and bad: What makes great business management software

    No two companies are the same, and neither should the business management software they're using be.Every organisation has its own unique needs and a one-size-fits-all platform doesn't always make sense. But that shouldn't preclude an enterprise from developing a digital ecosystem to store and transmit data, gain better oversight and automate operational processes.Increased success in manufacturing brings competition.With digital disruption at the core of an increasingly competitive industry, manufacturing companies should evaluate all possible options and ensure the applications they incorporate don't just map to their needs, but are also forward-looking.Where are the needsAlthough the manufacturing sector's year-long boom has no end in sight, it certainly won't be getting any easier to stay successful. Amazon and its many subsidiaries are set to enter the Australian market and impact everything from the supply chain to the consumer. Companies will have to scale quickly to continue competing with the new face entering the country."Some businesses are concerned about the threat of competition while others are excited to embrace the opportunity that Amazon offers," Kate Carnell, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman, told Food Processing.Expert foresight and total control of internal operations should be a given, but for many manufacturing organisations it can remain a consistent problem. Bookkeeping, for example, can be difficult to stay on top of when nearly half of all small businesses are owed more than $20,000 in late payments, Dynamic Business reported. Business management software is becoming ingrained with the manufacturing industry. Connectivity is vitalThe key is incorporating a platform that has modules which align with the company's weaknesses; whether that be accounting, structured stock or import costing software. But, the most important aspect isn't what it can do, but how it transfers that information.The platform you use should connect multiple programmes.Many owners rush to integrate a solution without first understanding how it fits into the broader picture. Inventory levels should be visible to the accounting arm of the office, for instance. Data must be allowed to transmit seamlessly between point A and B.It seems like a simple requirement, but consider the programmes you might currently have in place. Ideally, you don't have to log in or out more than once per day - all information should be obtainable. Far too often, accounting platforms require you to input data because it can't sync with others.When searching for business management software, be sure to investigate whether it meets all of your needs. There's no use in purchasing licences for multiple solutions that only serve to silo departments and processes when there are technologies available that provide modules that can easily be added or removed.Stay preparedYou can't foresee every risk, but you can certainly try and prepare for them. Natural disasters aren't all too common but they can be devastating when they strike. Businesses that keep client and other pertinent information on legacy software like Excel spreadsheets or on platforms that store the data on-site are exposing themselves to potential dangers.This is because the data will almost surely be lost if there aren't any remote backups of the information. While you may have a dedicated staff member assigned to ensuring everything is downloaded once a week, it only takes a little bit of workplace chaos to forget. Business intelligence insights can give your organisation the advantage it needs. Did you know the Federal Emergency Management Association (FEMA) reported that nearly 40 per cent of small businesses never open their doors again after a natural disaster? The sheer financial exposure of restoring a location can be a burden to bear, but losing valuable information about clients accounts can sink a company...

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  • Sep 27 2017

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    The key to sustaining a high rate of growth in manufacturing

    Happy days are ahead for manufacturing organisations - at least, those that can keep up with all the success.It's no secret that the Australian manufacturing industry has been booming over the past few years, but the improved sector activity can actually inflict more harm than good for unprepared businesses. Developing efficient bookkeeping habits through the incorporation of accounting software has become vital to maintaining growth in a sometimes chaotic field.Signs pointing upTo understand where any potential issues could sprout up, it's important to first realise exactly how the manufacturing sector is doing so well. It recently received its highest rating on AI Group's Purchasing Manager Index (PMI) since 2002, at 59.8, Business Insider reported. This marks an 11 month stretch of continued gains, but not solely for reasons having to do with finances.Most manufacturing activity is tied to inventory, rather than sales."Production and new orders were especially strong, but they were coupled with a robust expansion in inventories rather than in sales," the AI Group said. "This suggests current activity is geared towards future orders and stockpiling rather than for immediate delivery."While it's excellent news that clients are seeing long-term relationships with manufacturing organisations as a viable strategy, it can also create bookkeeping issues. Accountants must be up-to-date on every outstanding balance in relation to the stocked inventory, some of which can be subject to volatile swings in currency conversion rates.Staying in commandWith the majority of manufacturers' inventory in constant flux, having a flexible accounting software system is key to managing it all. Whereas many provide rigid bookkeeping tools, growing companies should search for a platform that fits their specific business model.The application should, for example, automate the variance of currency fluctuations in relation to committed funds. Similarly, it should offer the ability to create custom accounting periods that can map to each client's needs. As the AI Group suggested, not every order moving forward will require immediate fulfilment. Manufacturing is booming in Australia, and organisations should use accounting software to keep up. All organisations should continue looking forward towards their future, which is why the software should integrate with a business management platform as well. While the rest of the industry is focused on robotics and the Internet of Things (IoT), innovative companies are taking advantage of intuitive software ecosystems that make it easy to link inventory management with accounting and other components of the business. If they aren't integrated, transfer of data becomes rigorous when it should be seamless. Contact an Advanced Business Manager representative today for more information.

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  • Sep 20 2017

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    Import costing made simple for food manufacturing businesses

    Scaling a small business is no easy feat.The difficulty rises even more in food manufacturing, where margins are competitive and politics play an enhanced role in dictating future success. Case in point: The international trade fallout from Brexit, where export and import costs could range widely over the next two years.With so much on the average business owner's plate, it makes sense why so many are turning to import costing software for help.Stiff competitionThere's more that can go wrong than right when it comes to importing. Numerous risks are involved, including fundamentals like price negotiation, quality of product upon arrival or simply getting everything through customs. On top of that, laws are always bound to change.Business owners face numerous importing risks.Delivery Duty Paid (DDP), for example, has become Australian small- and medium-sized business' responsibility recently, according to The Conversation. In the past, sellers would have to foot this bill.All of this hasn't even included the geopolitical risks that seem to swirl daily. Companies are expected to keep track of any potential threats to their supply chain, as well as changes in currency conversion rates. Staying on top of this while continuing to scale a company in the midst of continued food manufacturing industry success can leave potential gaps that could lead to a dip in revenue.One less thing to worry aboutThe popularity of import costing software is growing considering the amount of small businesses in Australia, coupled with the fact most are likely in the midst of hyper-growth. Often included on business management platforms, the application automates a variety of tasks. Import costing software takes stress out of the equation. One that is key to saving time and avoiding bookkeeping errors is detailed costing. The program automatically converts shipments to the latest exchange rate. Future-looking analysis also offers personnel the ability to plug in a "what if" scenario. Conversion rates rarely stay the same, and this application accounts for that by giving you accurate estimates of what the landing cost would be under a variety of factors.Of course, import costing software also helps your business track the shipments. This is key as you bring new employees and clients on, as well as continue to grow your inventory. It will help avoid any chance that mistakes will be made.Don't let importing be a barrier to organisational growth. Contact an Advanced Business Manager representative today to learn more.

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