Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Systems - Why not forgetting the 'returns' process is so important.
One of the major selling points of an ERP system is its integration across departments and modules. The promise of a relational database is that you can share customer, product, pricing and interaction data instead of having silo's of information. What is not advertised is that if one person makes mistakes in one department, if the process isn't designed and implemented correctly, this can impact several other departments.
Take our real life example: We saw warehouse receiving people entering serial numbers incorrectly due to the receiving process being badly designed.
The result: Questions and Re-work! Reports not working correctly! What's the real serial number of this asset? Has the service contract ended? What is the cost now? Which item is it? How does the salesperson look for this item now? What about if a customer rings in with the old serial number when it is re-used at another client site?
Additional hidden costs: Training is now needed to help people understand the impacts they can cause in the new ERP environment, but this training is often implemented too late. It's simply easier to blame the system for these faults, and not fix the root cause of the problem.
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