Using true cloud ERP software can help your staff to more effectively work from home. And as the UK is now back in a national lockdown, now could be the best time for you to consider implementing it.
If lockdowns continue for many months into 2021, you want to be assured that your staff can continue to be productive. Here’s some ways that true cloud ERP NetSuite could be of benefit to your business during the ongoing restrictions.
Use Any Device
NetSuite is enterprise resource planning (ERP) software that allows your employees to work remotely. They can log on to the system with any device, whether that’s a PC or Mac, a laptop, tablet or smart phone. They don’t need a special device, nor any pre-configuration with special security access. All that’s needed is an internet-enabled device and an internet connection.
This is great for convenience. Your company’s entire financial data, customer ordering information, stock levels and more are all accessible for all staff with a log in. In normal times, this means employees could work while out during their lunch break, on the train while commuting, or in a taxi on the way to their next meeting. The mobile app has a user-friendly interface, with a KPI dashboard, and ready access to recent records and saved searches.
And during a pandemic, with the added pressure of children being at home, or sharing home office space with other family members, this gives everyone much greater flexibility. Your finance manager can analyse days sales outstanding while cooking dinner; your marketing manager can view the results of a campaign while helping children with schooling; and your warehouse manager can optimise his order picking process while out for a lunchtime walk.
Make Central Configurations While Others Use the System
NetSuite is a cloud ERP system, you can make configurations centrally without the need for all your users to log out of the software so that the database can update.
This is a huge advantage over on-premise ERP software, or software that isn’t ‘true’ cloud. It means that users from all your departments can continue to work without interruption. At the same time, your IT department could be making some setting changes, or your finance department could be updating the database with a payments run.
The database for all users consists of live, up to date information, with no need to consolidate periodically.
NetSuite has two major releases each year, which are scheduled to happen in the background. The NetSuite system advises users when they will be upgraded and shows highlights of the changes. The changes bring in new functionality that will streamline and automate your operations even further. Thanks to NetSuite’s delivery as Software-as-as-Service, you will always be using the most recent version of the platform.
In between those releases, there are minor updates and patches as needed. Again, all of these are done in the background, without you needing to log out of the software or take backups. It’s all done without any disruption to your business and without you needing to plan in the upgrade, pay for anything or involve and IT staff in the process.
With remote working, it may not be so easy to co-ordinate times for your employees to log out of software, or to ensure backups are taken. But with a true cloud system like NetSuite, this isn’t even necessary.
Comprehensive Support and Training
With 24/7 online support, comprehensive help files and online training, you can be sure your users always have any NetSuite assistance that they might need.
Support resources help you get the most out of NetSuite. In a working from home situation, you can’t simply arrange on-site ERP training and support. But this sort of situation is redundant with NetSuite. Instead, the online resources can be accessed from home by all users, without the need to arrange centralised training.
The same is true for technical assistance. Different levels of support packages are available, each giving different service levels, including online case submissions, 24-hour a day telephone support, or managed services.
Most Staff Can Work from Home
Sales, procurement, planning and accountancy staff can continue to work effectively from home. They can undertake everything that they would do in the office.
Staff that are involved in processing stock or undertaking manufacturing obviously cannot work from home. But they can continue to operate the system onsite also. To aid social distancing practices, many warehouses have implemented new shift patterns or overnight working. In these cases, the operatives can update systems and the changes are made available live on the NetSuite system. So stock movements, orders and manufacturing updates are always available in real time.
Equally, while they are working on site, the information that they need – which may have been updated by remote workers – will also always be accurate and up to date. The warehouse manager doesn’t need to be on the floor to provide the picking schedule, for example. It can be arranged and provided remotely.
An Uncertain 2021
As we head into a possible lengthy lockdown in 2021, all UK office-based businesses will be in the same situation. With large numbers of staff once again likely to be undertaking remote work, the challenges of running a business with a scattered workforce cannot be underestimated. Upgrading your software to a true cloud system makes it more possible for your staff to work from home effectively and productively. With the business uncertainty that we face in 2021, getting the ERP right will be a must.
Do you need an easy way for your staff to access vital ERP software remotely while they work from home? Are you ready for a move to the cloud and want to evaluate and buy ERP software? If you’d like to discuss upgrading to NetSuite, we can have you up and running with a successful remote ERP project really quickly. Book an appointment or contact us for more information and for a senior ERP project analyst to provide you with a free business consultation.
Photograph courtesy of Staged Spaces.