Tips for wholesale distributors; choosing the right ERP software
Warehousing and distribution is a rapidly changing and demanding industry, with complex inventories and supply chains. It’s critical that your processes and systems are as efficient and easy to manage as possible to retain your competitive advantage.
As your business gets bigger, your business demands grow. It’s common for wholesale distributors to experience growing pains and these can be a significant driver of change.
The infrastructure you have in place can help you achieve your company goals or hold you back.
Choosing an ERP (enterprise resource planning) system is no small feat. It is part of the core infrastructure of any wholesale distribution operation, connecting every function within the organisation. You must be sure the system you select will address any challenges you currently have and also offer longevity for what’s to come.
We’ve outgrown our current system so, how do I go about evaluating our options as efficiently as possible?
As this represents a significant investment for wholesale distributors (and so it should), we can’t emphasise enough how important it is to give each step the time and resources needed to get it right. Thorough preparation and evaluation will reduce business disruption and unnecessary costs during the implementation phase.
It’s important to review ERP systems that are widely used in your industry. For example, as a wholesale distributor, look at two or three systems with advanced inventory and warehouse management that integrates easily with barcode scanners, POS systems and eCommerce. This not only indicates suitability to your line of business but also helps ensure relevant industry expertise from the software authors and the vendors who will be guiding you.
What does the selection process look like?
- Understand your business goals, objectives and drivers for change
- Conduct exploratory research and create a shortlist of suitable ERP systems
- Select trusted product vendors/business partners
- Carry out thorough product evaluations
- Proposals, negotiations and your final decision
Want to know more about each step of the selection process?
Our interactive guide for distributors will take you through the selection process, from understanding your business objectives, shortlisting ERP systems for your industry and evaluating product vendors, to making the right decision for your company.