Business Software, ERP, GP, Inventory Management Articles

Size Drives Strategic Technological Advantage for SMBs

March 22nd 2011

It is often said that small and mid-market companies are at a strategic disadvantage when compared to their larger, tech-savvy and market-leading competitors. However, nothing could be further from the truth. (more…)...

Why Small and Medium Businesses Should Consider ERP Cloud

March 15th 2011

If you’re a small or mid-sized organization, making a decision to implement ERP usually is a major milestone. It means you recognize the overall advantages of ERP and how it is designed to drive improved business efficiency across the entire organization. Move your ERP into the cloud and you not only benefit from the software-as-a-service model (SAAS), but the rewards of not having to manage your financial accounting solution internally. (more…)...

Check Your Blind Spot with a 360-Degree Review

March 11th 2011

We’ve already determined there is no such thing as a truly unbiased opinion. Given that, the pivotal determining factor to finding the right solution provider rests with one thing – you, and your ability to see your own strengths and weaknesses. (more…)...

Map Your Business Challenges to Find the Right Solution

February 23rd 2011

If your business is facing challenges that you are hoping a new business management solution will solve, a great first step in the software selection process is to assess your current business processes. After all, a business management solution is only going to deliver benefits to your organization in proportion to how you are using it. (more…)...

How to Find the Right Subscription Billing Solution

February 16th 2011

Many times I’ve worked with high technology (often “start-up”) companies that are looking for a way to successfully implement a Subscription Billing System (a.k.a. recurring billing). They are either seeking a new solution that does subscription billing, or they may already have an application which calculates the billing amounts but doesn’t provide the normal accounting functions. In either case, they cannot scale their business when burdened by manual processes and disconnected systems. (more…)...

SaaS or Not: Does Software as a Service Fit your Company?

February 15th 2011

The buzz over Software as a Service (SaaS) continues to grow. Many SaaS-based providers are positioning their products as the only option for organizations looking to make a smart business software purchase. (more…)...

Looking For An Unbiased Opinion? Get Over It!

February 10th 2011

Your boss has set you off on a mission – get the best software you can for the best price you can, and make sure it works! So how do most people go about tackling that very common problem? They head out in search of a company that can provide them with that elusive product: “the unbiased opinion”. (more…)...

Top 3 Need to Knows For Buying Business Software

February 8th 2011

Acquiring a new ERP solution – every company faces this challenge on average once a decade; more often if the business is dramatically growing or requirements have changed as a result of acquisitions. In many cases, the focus initially is on how to select the best new software package, the overall budget impact and what implementation vendor to choose. These attributes are certainly critical but here are some other thoughts gleaned from years of observing what happens in these complex projects. (more…)...

How to Improve Your Bottom Line with Cost Accounting

February 1st 2011

Over the years, I have been amazed at how a diverse range of business owners monitor the pulse of their business. Some can tell their business is doing well by walking through their operations and paying attention to signals like the frequency of incoming calls, the number of incoming/outgoing trucks, the activities of their employees, or the sound of their equipment. (more…)...

Identifying the Stage of your Software Lifecycle

January 25th 2011

Is your Solution Obsolete? There have been many discussions around a product’s life cycle and the five stages identified: introduction, growth, maturity, decline and exit. (more…)...

How Much Does It Cost You To Buy?

January 20th 2011

In my last article titled “The Mysterious Cost of Carrying Inventory”, we published a questionnaire that you can fill out, to have us calculate your specific company’s inventory carrying cost percentage.  That is, what it costs to maintain a dollar’s worth of stocked inventory in your warehouse for an entire year.  The carrying cost is used in many inventory analyses and planning formulas including the economic order quantity formula; the calculation that is designed to determine your best buy replenishment quantity. (more…)...

Top 5 Requirements for Your Food & Beverage Distribution Software

January 18th 2011

As a food and beverage distributor, you face very unique challenges. The perishable product you handle must be moved with a keen eye to regulations and maximizing efficiency in order to meet the daily demands of your customers. You can achieve this by ensuring your business management solution meets the Top 5 Necessities for Food & Beverage Distribution Software: (more…)...

The Top 5 Effective Ways to Trim Your Inventory

December 31st 2010

Most distributors strive to achieve the goal of effective inventory management: “...

A Unique SharePoint Coaching Approach to Benefit Any Company

December 21st 2010

Many businesses download and install the free version of Microsoft SharePoint but become hindered by a lack of knowledge and/or training. A southeast Michigan automotive supplier with seven plants, 600 employees and annual sales of $170- million endured several failed SharePoint implementations before finding success teaming with us at The TM Group. (more…)...

The Mysterious Cost of Carrying Inventory

December 19th 2010

The carrying cost of inventory is the cost of maintaining your average inventory investment of inventory in your warehouse, storeroom, stockroom, or other location where you stock raw materials or finished goods.  What costs do you incur in carrying inventory? (more…)...

Accelerating Your Online Business Presence and Profitability

December 16th 2010

Using multiple online markets for business acceleration If you operate or have thought of operating an online storefront, a question that you’ll want to answer is: “Should I sell across multiple online venues and storefronts?” The answer is a resounding “Yes!” (more…)...

Why Lean Manufacturing is Here to Stay

December 14th 2010

Having borne the brunt of the economic downturn in recent years, it is not a surprise that...

Top Reasons Why Most Executive Dashboards Fall ShortTop Reasons Why Most Executive Dashboards Fall Short

November 8th 2010

Unfortunately, many of the dashboards being used today seem to be set up for their aesthetics rather than their effectiveness. Fancy graphs and colors may stand out but often don’t deliver the critical information you need. A dashboard’s value should not be judged by its “flash”, but rather by how quickly and easily it conveys the information you are looking for. (more…)...

At the Crossroads with QuickBooks or Peachtree

November 4th 2010

In our journey we meet many young, growing and successful companies that have outgrown the capabilities of their initial accounting system. (more…)...

How a Bunch of Italian Merchants Led the Way to ERP

November 2nd 2010

It’s considered the biggest mystery in the history of accounting – just what was it that led a bunch of Italian merchants to create double-entry accounting. The practice emerged during the Renaissance -- and to German sociologist Max Weber – it marked the entry point for capitalism. While it may be tempting to think that wine-pedalling monks played a  pivotal role, historians seem to scoff at the idea. (more…)...

Eliminating LIFO: Who Cares?

October 21st 2010

It is not surprising to me that the feds are trying to change a tax law that has been in effect for 71 years to help prop up the government’s huge deficit. I have two reactions to the article “Sucking the LIFO Out of Inventory” published in CFO Magazine over the summer. One based upon what I have seen in the industry as best practices and the other upon my understanding of how higher taxes impact businesses and retard economic growth. Private Business Prefers FIFO or Average Cost My gut reaction on reading the article was “Who cares?” because I do not think it will actually affect many businesses. This is particularly true in the privately-owned, mid-market sector of our economy which represents the largest number of companies in the United States. Our company has implemented financial management solutions for hundreds of companies for more than two decades, and I cannot recall a single installation in which LIFO was used for the inventory valuation method. Most companies, from my experience, prefer to use either FIFO or Average Cost in order to create more accurate financial statements since revenue and expenses are better aligned. Some companies use serial tracking to tie specific cost of goods to specific invoices for even more accurate reporting, particularly when their business model is somewhat of a “let’s make a deal” scenario for buying and selling. The bottom line for most businesses is that better information leads to better management. Additionally, as pointed out in the article, over time the cost basis for LIFO will average out as supply and demand, and inflation and deflation, affect the cost of goods they purchase. Therefore, it would seem inconsequential to the majority of businesses in this country, whether LIFO is eliminated or not. Danger of Slowing Growth & Cutting Jobs However, we do have to look at the economic reality that there are several large, publicly-owned businesses which have based their businesses for many years on the LIFO valuation method, both for managing their company and for reducing their tax burdens. This is where my second reaction comes into play. Even though there are fewer of these businesses, their sheer size means that they impact a lot of jobs, both through direct employment and through their suppliers. If they pay more in taxes, they will either have to increase their prices to cover the additional taxes paid out, or reduce their costs through other means such as job reductions. Also, higher taxes will definitely slow down their ability to grow and increase jobs over the next 10 years – and this goes against what this country now needs: growth and jobs. Sure, the increased revenue that would be generated over the next 10 years is appealing to the politicians, but should we remove a way of doing business that has been with us since 1939? Inventory Control Key My word of advice is to ensure that you have a strong financial management and inventory control solution that will allow you to be both compliant and provide you with the information you need to effectively manage your business. It is not surprising to me that the feds are trying to change a tax law that has been in effect for 71 years to help prop up the government’s huge deficit. (more…)...

Privacy Laws Outdated for Age of Cloud Computing

September 27th 2010

Last week, privacy rights advocates charged that stronger laws protecting information stored in the cloud are long overdue, otherwise stormy weather may be imminent.Last week, privacy rights advocates charged that stronger laws protecting information stored in the cloud are long overdue, otherwise stormy weather may be imminent. (more…)...

Why CFOs are Bucking the SaaS Trend

September 1st 2010

The Software as a Service (Saas) trend has been steadily growing over the last decade. Interestingly, some companies that cloud computing is aimed at, small and medium-sized businesses, are now bucking the trend and instead favor on-premise software. The Software as a Service (Saas) trend has been steadily growing over the last decade. Interestingly, some companies that cloud computing is aimed at, small and medium-sized businesses, are now bucking the trend and instead favor on-premise software. (more…)...

The Cost of Developing Your Not-For-Profit Budget

August 18th 2010

As a not-for-profit organization, you have very specific challenges when it comes time to develop your budget. You must align spending with your mission and allocate purpose-specific donations, all while making sure you have something set aside for unpredicted events that could impact your mission.As a not-for-profit organization, you have very specific challenges when it comes time to develop your budget. You must align spending with your mission and allocate purpose-specific donations, all while making sure you have something set aside for unpredicted events that could impact your mission.As a not-for-profit organization, you have very specific challenges when it comes time to develop your budget. You must align spending with your mission and allocate purpose-specific donations, all while making sure you have something set aside for unpredicted events that could impact your mission. (more…)...

Should you buy business software based on a demo?

July 19th 2010

Would you buy a car relying solely on the those ads with the hyper-frenetic voiceover about features that don’t really matter? Do you really care how the vehicle will look cruising through a mountain range? Or if it can be dropped by a crane without damaging it? Or that there is pure silver dust, hand-polished into the wood dash?...

 Top 5 Reasons Supply Chains Fail

July 16th 2010

Managing your supply chain can feel like herding cats. Just when you think you have a stra...

10 Reasons to Upgrade to GP 2010 – Part 2

July 16th 2010

Still undecided on upgrading to Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010? Here are 5 more reasons you should upgrade:Still undecided on upgrading to Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010? Here are 5 more reasons you should upgrade: (more…)...

10 Reasons to Upgrade to GP 2010 – Part 1

July 16th 2010

Mulling over the pros and cons of upgrading to Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010? If you’re looking for new ways to boost relationships, connect data, enhance insight and streamline business processes, this latest upgrade is worth considering. Mulling over the pros and cons of upgrading to Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010? If you’re looking for new ways to boost relationships, connect data, enhance insight and streamline business processes, this latest upgrade is worth considering. (more…)...

10 Reasons to Replace QuickBooks

July 15th 2010

Sometimes it can be hard to let go of something that has worked so well for you in the past. For years, QuickBooks has handed all your business management needs: Sometimes it can be hard to let go of something that has worked so well for you in the past. For years, QuickBooks has handed all your business management needs: (more…)...

ERP Migration vs. Upgrade: 5 Things to Consider

July 1st 2010

To Migrate or To Upgrade? You know your ERP is no longer working as effective and efficiently as needed. But should you purchase the recommended upgrades or add-ons for your current solution, or migrate to an entirely new system? Both require planning ahead, an investment of time and resources. Think about it... To Migrate or To Upgrade? You know your ERP is no longer working as effectively or efficiently as needed. But should you purchase the recommended upgrades or add-ons for your current solution, or migrate to an entirely new system? Both require planning ahead, an investment of time and resources. Think about it... (more…)...

What is ERP?

June 20th 2010

You’ve been told, “We need ERP! Find me a good system.” You say, “Sure thing,” while thinking to yourself, “I really wish I knew what ERP was.” Rest assured you aren’t the first person to be confused.You’ve been told, “We need ERP! Find me a good system.” You say, “Sure thing,” while thinking to yourself, “I really wish I knew what ERP was.” Rest assured you aren’t the first person to be confused. (more…)...

Next Stop: Obsolescence

May 31st 2010

Change Your Company's Course Ever wonder, “What the heck are we going to do when Jim retires? He’s the only one who knows how to work with our painful software system”. It’s certainly not something you want waking you up at night – particularly because it’s 100% avoidable. Change Your Company's Course Ever wonder, “What the heck are we going to do when Jim retires? He’s the only one who knows how to work with our painful software system”. It’s certainly not something you want waking you up at night – particularly because it’s 100% avoidable. (more…)...

Why is an ERP Solution Right for your Business?

May 7th 2010

Dealing with disparate systems and silos of data is inefficient and expensive. Manually entering information from one system to the next because of unaligned fields and incompatible software is time consuming and laborious. Think transparency, visibility, integration and productivity.Dealing with disparate systems and silos of data is inefficient and expensive. Manually entering information from one system to the next because of unaligned fields and incompatible software is time consuming and laborious. Think transparency, visibility, integration and productivity. (more…)...