Enterprise software covers a wide range of technology, but, at its most basic form, it is simply the applications or computer programs that organisations use to carry out and streamline business operations. These operations include things like human resources, customer relationship management, accounting systems, payroll, business intelligence, communication, and more. The main purposes of the software are to boost efficiency of day-to-day business processes and make info more comprehensive and accessible.
The Benefits of Enterprise Software
The most obvious benefit that comes from using enterprise software is it provides a place and a method for accumulating and storing a wealth of data. Still, when designed correctly, enterprise software suites offer many more features which make tasks easier and ultimately enhance worker productivity by:
- Integrating Information
In the past, business information was stored in individual software programs on separate computers within the company. There was no flow of information between programs or even among the business' various departments, and separate applications were required to send information. With so many "hurdles" slowing down the flow of info, employees had to spend far too much time searching for needed data -- time which could've been used for more productive endeavours.
However, with enterprise software, all of that's changed. Modern software suites integrate data across computers both in and outside the company's system and create a single place where employees can retrieve information. Not to mention, redundancies are eliminated, since multiple departments aren't gathering the same data for their own uses.
- Making Systems Less Complex
Without a comprehensive software solution, IT departments may find themselves filling in the gaps by creating or tweaking other programs. This can make for cumbersome systems that are difficult to operate and often demand attention from IT on a nearly constant basis. Not only is this overwhelming for IT, it also frustrates other employees who find the mishmash of software too complex to use.
Enterprise software solves this problem by combining all programs into a singular system with a user-friendly interface. Also, because employees only have to train in one program, learning curves are lower and workers are more likely to approach the technology positively.
- Automating Processes
Instead of having to take the time to manually compile data from different departments and then design a plan of action based on the data, enterprise applications can do all that work automatically and even take some sort of action based on predetermined criteria. And it can all happen with minimal human input. For example, a customer relations program can gather customer behaviour and demographics data and combine that knowledge with an email marketing campaign to send targeted, research-based messages to customers. This process can then be tied in with analytics which can monitor the success of the emails and then integrate the findings into an ERP system, where company members can evaluate the results and decide where to invest further resources.
Similar automated activities can happen in virtually every facet of the business, including inventory and order tracking, sales forecasting, and payroll.
- Enables Software to Grow with the Business
Quality enterprise software is modular, meaning it's capable of having as few or as many modules as the business needs. This is an especially valuable feature for growing companies that may want to smart small but will need different or more robust features from the program in the future.
By using a modular program, organisations can stick with what they need and not inundate employees with unnecessary features. For instance, a business may want to start with essentials like accounting and payroll systems and then later add on human resource and employee self-service modules. With each addition, operations become better integrated and departments can collaborate easier.
A Point to Remember
While all the benefits above can enable a company to work smarter and more efficiently, it's important to note that not all enterprise software is created equally. It's vital to get a well-built, user-friendly program suited to your industry. After all, if the technology is too complicated, no one will want to use it, and it may result in more headaches than solutions. So, make sure to find a provider with a modern, easy-to-use program that offers long term support.