What’s standing in the way of your success?
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software can give you a clear picture of every single customer or prospect’s areas of engagement. So often, distributors have disconnected systems that leave a lot of sales opportunities on the table. There are many reasons to look at a CRM solution and many ways in which one can help you provide a better experience to the customer and provide your team with a powerful sales management tool.
CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management, and it needs to do all of this and more easily and in an integrated way.
Many distributors who look at a CRM solution have similar pain points that include:
Accuracy = Time Savings
Not only is double entry of data time consuming, but it also creates quite a bit of room for error. If there’s even one instance where a department must re-enter information, there will be omissions and errors, leaving your data incomplete and incorrect. CRM software eliminates this need by eliminating redundancy, as well as giving you cleaner and dependable customer data.
Insights = Quality Interactions
You already know that you want to provide the highest level of customer service possible. Detailed customer profiles let you maximize the impact of each touch point with true insight. Whether from sales, marketing, customer service or support, being able to see the bigger picture empowers your team to collaborate towards one end goal. A CRM solution gives you both insight and analytics so you can see greater revenue growth.
Engagement = Customer Loyalty
Increased customer engagement depends upon accurate information across all divisions. Instead of running one system for marketing and one for sales, you get full integration and one source for all the customer and prospect data. This integration improves the quality of each interaction, which translates to higher levels of customer satisfaction. As we all know, the happier your customers are, the more loyal they become.
A complete CRM solution will increase revenues and customer loyalty by breaking down the barriers between departments. You can now forecast and plan for a superior and customized end user experience, from anywhere.
If you’d like to learn more, Aktion Associates is an Infor Gold Channel Partner. We sell and support Infor CRM software, the CRM solution that distributors turn to most. Use the links above to learn more about this Infor solution or reach out to me directly and we can get the discussion started today.
Distribution Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) Can Do More Than Just Provide a Financial Snapshot
When someone references the term KPI, most often we think about financial data – the good old bottom line of profitability. Are we making money and where? This is for good reason. Business leaders have to keep a close watch on the financial health of the company by looking back at past events and by attempting to predict and thus steer how the company performs in the future. It’s natural to prioritize the KPIs that give visibility into the health of the entire distribution operation.
But monitoring KPIs is no longer just for giving you financial data or only a good fit for giant distribution companies. In order to keep up and get ahead, small and medium sized distributors also need to think seriously about how to harness KPI data to move the company forward. Below you’ll see some very quick KPI definitions and then I’ll talk about how you can use this information to steer your organization more effectively towards success.
Historical Data: Looking backwards into past business performance is usually termed historical KPI data. Summaries of completed projects, viewing their profitability, and looking at past trends can help you formulate how you approach your forward-looking business plan.
Predictive Data: Looking into the future is typically called predictive KPI data. Your management team can set goals to guide how decisions are made. In distribution, this might mean analyzing demographics and understanding the profitability of certain products.
Ok, that’s good information, but how can you improve your KPI tracking as a distributor?
Many existing distribution ERP platforms, such as Acumatica, now come with a pre-defined set of KPIs to help you get started. You should expect your ERP to have interactive dashboards that are easy to set up, adjust and change by an employee’s role so each person has access to the information they need. This is something that Acumatica Distribution Edition does seamlessly. With the click of your mouse or even a tap on your mobile screen you can drill down into data for clarity and understanding.
While a great starting point, once you master those base KPI sets, you can move on to tailoring them for metrics specific to your distribution operations. Make this a transparent and group process to be sure your department heads are invested and able to obtain the data they need to streamline how they perform their jobs. The dashboards and views you set up will enable all your teams to become more effective and in turn, more profitable.
We have found that many of our distribution customers look at KPIs in relation to inventory. They need to be able to have real-time visibility into where their inventory is and the reorder costs. Determine profitability at the product and warehouse level to better control costs across the entire supply chain.
Other important areas that you will want to be sure you can track closely include:
Aktion Associates is a Gold Certified Acumatica Partner. Please reach out to me so we can either set up an Acumatica Distribution demo or to get the Distribution ERP discussion started.
We use data every day to make decisions in our personal lives. Aggregated restaurant stars, movie reviews and Google ratings drive our purchasing choices while the entire world checked health data points daily during the peak of the coronavirus pandemic. We rely on data because it is objective and based on facts. Unfortunately, many critical business decisions are still made using a gut feel or because that’s the way things have always been done. It’s also the reason why so many things can go wrong.
In an increasingly competitive construction landscape, using accurate data and real-time Business Intelligence (BI) tools to develop fact-based strategies takes the guesswork out of managing a construction business.
Streamlining data access and analysis to enhance decisions
Information coming from disparate sources leaves executives with a muddled perception of their company’s performance. And while many construction companies use reports from their ERP systems, this frequently requires time-consuming custom queries, while producing static reports that are outdated as soon as they are shared. By the time the reports reach relevant manager’s or executive’s desks, the information does not reflect a current picture, and forces them to make decisions on incomplete information.
Accurate, timely data empowers executives with the knowledge to make better decisions that will drive overall business success.
For instance, the finance department needs a current and accurate picture of site performance to understand any risk, cash position, and project profitability, to name a few key performance indicators. Company controllers and bookkeepers can use the information to maintain better financial oversight, while identifying potential challenges to profitability and opportunities to be more efficient. A site manager may use the same data to see how to manage labor, optimize deliveries and identify underperforming suppliers.
When executives have access to accurate, real-time data, they can effectively manage their business’ profitability and growth. ‘The BI Survey’ by BARC found that 84% of companies that have implemented business intelligence report making better business decisions, and 41% report increased revenue.
Business intelligence at the heart of decision-making
Business intelligence software, such as Aktion Analytics, provides access to actionable information that will serve as the foundation of effective, data-driven decision-making.
Aktion Analytics was created for non-technical users with minimal training. Dashboards are updated automatically, represent real-time insights, and can be personalized with relevant KPIs. Aktion Analytics also gathers data from different sources and integrates it to give users a complete picture of the business, while providing a single source of accurate data that the entire business can trust. Aktion Analytics makes the information accessible from anywhere via mobile devices to facilitate decision making even when out of the office.
A modern, successful construction business will utilize accurate data and technologies such as business intelligence to make informed decisions that help drive business growth.
As I have mentioned in previous installments of this blog, the last 18 months have shined a bright light on construction companies and how they do business. From preconstruction to close-out, a lot of companies are taking a step back to see how they can improve, not just in the extraordinary circumstances of the past year but moving forward into the “new normal.”
Bottomline: efficient and responsive workflows have become even more critically important.
So, first and foremost, what is a construction workflow?
Workflows are abundant in the construction industry and vary depending upon what your company does specifically. But, in a nutshell, workflows are the coordination of tasks between people in an organization. They include the passing of data and information, and the action that is required based on that data. They also usually follow a hierarchy of approvals and privileges based upon job description. But the goal is that they are optimized to maximize profits within the organization. Examples could include the accounts payable process, payroll processing, the submittal process, RFIs and close-out. The workflow is basically, “how do we get from point A to point B?”
But, as simple as those sound, a lot of companies have found a lot of ways to improve on these processes. When looking closely, there are usually a lot of inefficiencies, redundancies, and opportunities to improve the quality of work. All of these can lead to completing work in a timelier manner, using fewer resources, and resulting in happier customers, and ultimately more profit.
Where are the problems?
While every business is different, the workflow problems are usually very similar. In fact, they almost always fall into one of three areas.
Stop for a moment and think about your company’s many workflows. Can you think of places where there are breakdowns in any of these areas? The good news is that these breakdowns can be fixed.
So how do we fix these workflows?
To succeed in correcting workflow issues, you need to focus on four main areas and there is a simple acronym that can help you remember: CASE – Collaborate, Automate, Standardize and Eliminate. Let’s have a look at each area.
Collaborate: Hopefully, there is a reason you have hired the people that you have hired. Because they are good at what they do and are critical thinkers when it comes to solving problems and completing tasks. A great quote I always remember is from Lee Iacocca. “I hire people brighter than me and I get out of their way.”
The problem a lot of companies face is that whether this is true or not is of no consequence if those employees cannot collaborate with each other to improve processes. Employees must be empowered through collaboration. There are lot of available tools to help employees collaborate across companies and improve workflows.
Automate: Administration of workflows is a huge drain on company profit. Reducing data entry, approval pathing and general clerical work not only makes your workflows more efficient, but also more accurate. What if your staff could do their work in half the time? What if something that takes two people could be done with just one? There are a wide range of workflow automation tools in the construction industry to accomplish this reduction in manpower.
Standardize: Very often, as companies grow and expand, they also become more and more compartmentalized and siloed. Your project managers use different software than your back office. Your sales guys use different software than your estimators. And all their data is kept in different places in different forms. The more “common” your platforms are and standardized your process, the less redundancy and potential for error. In addition, the data being kept in a common data platform makes it easier to access and utilize, which reduces manpower.
Eliminate: This one is a bit “all encompassing” and really applies to the three previous letters in the acronym (but let’s face it. CASE is a lot better than CAS). To improve on workflows requires eliminating a lot of things. Eliminate redundancy, eliminate excess manpower, eliminate human error, eliminate inefficiency, eliminate silos, eliminate compartmentalization. There is a laundry list of things to eliminate to improve your workflows and make your company more efficient.
At Aktion Associates, we understand your workflows and understand how to optimize them, because we’ve done it for years. We utilize a consultative approach to your software and IT needs. We offer multiple solutions for most of your workflow issues. We work to understand your business first and suggest a solution based on what will make your business better.
Contact us today for a system review and see if we can make some suggestions to improve your workflows.
Businesses of all types and sizes find themselves relying more and more on technology. To stay functional, every modern company needs some type of IT assistance. Running a company is challenging enough without dealing with constant technology headaches. But once you decide you’re ready to hand off some or all of your IT responsibility to a managed services provider, how do you figure out who to talk to when there are so many choices? It can be daunting to evaluate and select the right technology partner for your business.
Below are three key characteristics to consider when deciding on a managed services provider.
1: Industry Expertise
Start by checking potential MSPs to be sure they’re familiar with your industry. So many generic MSPs really aren’t able to address industry-specific problems that might arise. With industry expertise comes knowledge of the ins and outs of your technology. This means knowing what requirements a particular piece of software needs to operate smoothly or which upgrades are necessary in order continue business as usual. The goals should be to keep your infrastructure healthy and eliminate downtime. When you partner with an MSP that knows the platforms your business runs, you gain confidence in the health of your technology.
2: Responsive Hotline Support
This builds upon the previous point, in that industry expertise is also extremely valuable in a hotline support team. A team of technology experts who can answer your calls quickly and efficiently should be another key factor in your evaluation of MSPs. Not all help desks are created equally, and unfortunately some businesses find themselves getting used to long wait times and speaking with people who can’t directly address their issues.
A good technology partner brings a full bench of support to every customer support issue. Whether a request is best resolved by a network engineer, an application consultant, or a software engineer, this program ensures that the appropriate resource is assigned to you. Be sure your new MSP has a proven case management and escalation protocol for timely and efficient issue resolution.
3: Remote Monitoring
Active monitoring and management of your system will keep it running smoothly. Remote monitoring items can include a cloud environment or server hardware, operating system status, and network performance. An MSP can also give you additional support such as database troubleshooting related to system uptime. You also might ask the providers if they can give you timely notice of developing issues, provide security, and perform regular system maintenance.
Providers now need to be able to offer a multi-layered approach to ensure each customer’s success. As with any partnership, you want to be positive the MSP you choose fits your needs and understands your overall business goals.
Because Aktion excels at each point listed above, we believe that these unique qualities set us apart from the competition. Our experience as a technology provider focused on the construction, distribution and manufacturing industries gives our customers complete technology peace of mind. Our goal is to protect your technology, both primary business applications and the platform that they run on.
If you’d like to discuss Aktion’s Managed Services features and benefits, please reach out and I’d be happy to get you started on your Managed Services journey.
The High Cost of Doing Nothing in the Modern World
We’ve all heard about, seen or even used the concept of return on investment (ROI) when it comes to purchasing something for our business or selling something to another.
Bottomline: Does the cost justify the future gain? What is the net value? And while this is a good starting point for most purchasing considerations, the concept by itself is a bit flawed, particularly regarding technology and software in today’s world.
Modern companies must take other factors into account when looking at new technologies for their business. Those factors center around three areas: Security, Customer/Employee Sophistication, Next Gen Development.
Security, as it relates to technology, seems like an obvious consideration. But we have all decided to buy the cheaper phone case, or even worse, skipped the phone case altogether, only to have big regrets later while we stare at a cracked phone screen. While this analogy is over-simplistic, it applies to business technology as well.
Cyber attacks and ransom attacks have become more and more common over the last couple of decades. According to CNBC, only 14% of small businesses are equipped to deal with cyber attacks. These cyber attacks cost all businesses, regardless of size, an average of $200,000 (CNBC, 2019, financesonline.com).
And increasing security does not just mean protection from bad guys, as we unfortunately have learned in the past year. Because of Covid-19, businesses are changing their business plans (Spiceworks Ziff Davis, 2020)
All of this is due to something we likely had never heard of at the start of 2020 — How has your company changed in the last year due to Covid? Was your technology ready?
Another area that is often overlooked when a company strictly focuses on ROI for a technology purchase is customer and employee sophistication and its rapid growth and change. In other words, they don’t consider the customers OR employees that they could disenfranchise or even LOSE if they don’t keep up.
For example, Millennials are twice as likely to want to use more visual communication methods at work compared to baby boomers. More than 64% say they understand information faster when it’s communicated visually, vs. just 7% who don’t (techsmith.com). With the majority of baby boomers on the cusp of retirement, and a new wave of millennials and Gen Z-ers set to join the workforce in the coming years, this is an indication of changes that likely lie ahead, Upwork’s CEO Stephane Kasriel told CNBC Make It.
“As younger generations ascend in the workforce and become the majority of managers in corporate America, they’ll reshape work as we know it,” said Kasriel. “Millennials and Gen Z currently account for slightly over a third of the workforce (38%). In the next decade, that figure is set to shoot up to 58%, making the youthful generations the most dominant in the workplace. With that will come a greater number of them in managerial positions, too. Already today, 48 percent of younger generation managers are director level or higher.” (cnbc.com/make-it)
This shift in the workforce will change things as simple as everyday communication, as indicated above, or as complicated as our world’s infrastructure with the expansion of IoT, or the internet of things. IoT is a system of interconnected computing devices in a single network. It makes it possible to create smart cities, homes, connected cars, utilities, and wearable gadgets. IoT is expected to dominate a lot of aspects of our day-to-day life in the very near future. There were 26.66 billion IoT devices in 2019. It is expected that number will surpass 75 billion by 2025 (Forbes).
Our employees and customers will expect us to be fluent in IoT and we don’t even know what will be available in five years. So, our technology purchases need to focus on agility.
Next Gen Development
Is your business ready for this change? Is your technology stack ready?
Which leads us to the next factor to consider — Next Gen Development. One of the first things we discuss when we engage with a new potential client is very simply, “Why are we talking? What is missing in your current system and do we have a solution?” We have all heard the stock sales questions. “What keeps you up at night?” Or, “If you could change anything about your business, what would it be?” But what if you sleep fine? What if your business is humming along? What if you wouldn’t change anything? As we have learned in the past year, things can change on a dime.
Prior to 2020, a lot of businesses had no need to be mobile. It wasn’t even a thought. Things were fine as they were…until they weren’t. And then they faced two problems. They needed to adjust to remote employees, but their technology stack didn’t allow it. So, they had to upgrade technology and then adjust their business, and they had to do it very quickly.
For me, 2020 was an enlightening one. Most companies operate by the adage, “if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it.” But I learned very quickly that in today’s world, that might not be good enough. Just because it isn’t broken today, doesn’t mean it won’t be tomorrow. And even if it doesn’t break, can it keep up with today’s world?
We are finding that nimble companies are upgrading to next gen solutions for this very reason, even though their current solution works fine. New development and new technology advancement take place in next gen platforms. They understand that working fine today might not lead to a smooth segue to technology tomorrow. And if that segue must happen quickly, they simply can’t afford the downtime.
Is your legacy platform ready for the future?
The Cost of Doing Nothing
And that brings us to a phrase I have used for a while, and I am not even sure where I found it. I read it somewhere and really liked the way it applied in sales. So, apologies to whoever coined the phrase “the cost of doing nothing.” But with most business sales/purchases that I have been a part of in the past decade or so, along with ROI, every company must understand the ramifications and costs incurred when no action is taken.
Admittedly, it may be difficult to quantify the cost of doing nothing. However, understanding the cost of inaction and its overall business impact should be a part of every business strategy discussion and every buying decision, particularly as it relates to technology.
Business Intelligence (BI) software provides a fact-based, real-time, singular version of the truth, empowering construction companies to build and maintain a competitive edge. Project managers who use BI have immediate access to critical information about their projects such as labor, scheduling, suppliers and detailed financials. BI software aggregates information from multiple data sources, transforming it into actionable insights that project managers can use to steer their projects towards success.
Time is critical to the success of construction projects, and delays usually translate into dollars. Project managers can use BI software to quickly analyze data and develop reports that lead to more strategic decisions. In the past, the analysis and reporting was likely managed by an IT department that was likely focused on more IT-centric needs of the business. The IT department can be a bottleneck and cause delays to the field, leaving project managers to make decisions on gut-feel or intuition rather than true intelligence. Intuitive BI puts the onus of data analysis and reporting into the hands of those in the field who need the data the most, and want to make quick decisions based on fact. Project managers use BI to decide how to prioritize project workflows, allocate labor, schedule equipment and supply deliveries, and manage costs and risks. The ability to use data and manage reporting for their areas of responsibility has tremendous impact on whether current and future projects are successful
Labor can be one of the biggest variables for construction projects. The better it can be managed and anticipated, the better chance project managers have of controlling their costs and turning a profit. The jobsite is traditionally a wide array of activity with contractors and subcontractors, and materials and equipment coming and going. Data is coming from all parts of the operations, and by aggregating and analyzing the information, project managers can quickly identify areas where labor can be reduced and or allocated to increase efficiencies, improve productivity and or drive completion. Project managers can also monitor the effectiveness of labor, whether it’s his or her own staff or contractors and subcontractors. Keeping and comparing labor with project timelines, supply and waste and other aspects of the jobsite can help project managers identify sources of labor that they will want to use on future projects.
BI can help project managers to identify problem areas and opportunities and make decisions that will refine their projects’ efficiencies. For example, nothing slows a project down faster than if the crews run out of supplies or if shipments are delayed. Project managers can use the data analytics to better understand when and how much materials need to be ordered and when to ask suppliers to deliver them. Ordering too much product can impact project budgets, while also creating challenges for how and where to store any excess. With better visibility into project data and workflows, a project manager can make better decisions on what suppliers to work with to keep things moving forward. Knowing supply ordering and delivering patterns, along with the best times, prices, and quantities to buy, also allows project managers to negotiate the best pricing tiers to increase profit margins and capitalize on every opportunity.
Executives can use BI to make decisions based on statistical facts. These facts can guide choices about future growth by evaluating a long-term view of the market and competition. Executives can use the data to help decide where to focus growth, how to streamline processes, identify productivity levels among staff and suppliers, monitor cash flow and project profitability, among other ways. While managers can use the actionable insights to determine the most effective strategies to improve individual projects, BI allows Executives to see the bigger picture, funneling all of the facts from across the portfolio of projects to make crucial operational decisions.
Business Intelligence offers a real-time picture of a project’s financial risk, cost variance, cash position, change orders, AR retainage, AP aging and profitability of the job. Top-notch BI allows project managers to drill all the way down to individual transactions to get instant answers to money-saving opportunities and cost concerns. By examining incoming and outgoing finances of the present and past, construction companies can make decisions based on future financial status. Breaking down costs by job give project managers the information that is relative to them. Customizing the BI dashboard allows project managers to track key performance indicators (KPIs) that enable effective financial oversight and management.
Aktion Analytics business intelligence for construction professionals makes it easier for project managers to access the information they need to better understand their project’s past and present performance in order to make the right decisions to increase the chances of success in the future. Companies will be better positioned to make successful strategic decisions when they analyze data and monitor critical business operations from a single source of truth.
To learn more about the value of business intelligence for your construction business, download this white paper.
As a Sage reseller, I converse with CFO’s and other C-Level executives at construction companies on a pretty regular basis. And, as Sage Intacct for Construction continues new releases each quarter, I get asked the same question more and more often: Is it time for my company to migrate from Sage 300 to Sage Intacct for Construction? That question almost always leads to a much more in-depth conversation. But that conversation usually centers around the same four areas: accessibility, visibility, usability, and reputation.
Sage 300 CRE is typically, and historically an on-premise solution used to manage the accounting side of a construction business. However, recent events have magnified the need for these businesses to have remote capabilities when it comes to connecting your construction business in real time. While Sage 300 can very effectively be hosted in one of our data centers, Sage Intacct for Construction is a true native cloud solution. This allows for unlimited and “always on” cloud access from anywhere and also solves any version control issues.
Despite Sage 300 CRE being an industry leader in construction cost accounting, companies can sometimes be challenged by the inflexibility of the software with regard to reporting. Custom reports can be difficult and typically require help from IT to create or change, and a lot of companies lean heavily on excel to export data into a workable format. In addition, today’s world moves fast. Sometimes downloading or printing reports just isn’t feasible, particularly for some C-Level executives that are seldom in the software, and merely want to see some high-level data.
Sage Intacct for Construction allows companies to create and view real-time customizable reports and dashboards, all of which are linked to the data, so, you can click through if you need a deeper look. The reports and dashboards are established based on privileges and permissions. So, an employee sees only what they need to see. And the C-Level executive can get the information they need from a high level, on a dashboard in real time, rather than needing to print a report or export to excel.
Impressively, Sage 300 CRE (formerly Timberline) has been the industry leader in construction cost accounting for 40-plus years. It provides contractors, developers and property managers the most complete end to end accounting solution for construction and property management on the market. And while the solution is still very robust and continues to be the market leader, it has been around for decades.
Sage Intacct for Construction offers an updated user experience. Its modernized user interface is easy to customize and even easier to navigate.
And while Sage 300 CRE lacks some integration capabilities, Sage Intacct for Construction’s open API allows for easy integration with many solutions available their marketplace. The user interface and seamless integrations with field, payroll and budgeting solutions offered by Sage Intacct for Construction create a solution that will improve efficiency, streamline process and enable your finance team.
As previously mentioned, Sage 300 CRE has been the industry leader in cost accounting software for decades and just last year, was named as the “best features” construction management software by The Motley Fool’s reviewing arm The Blueprint. focuses on reviewing and rating the best IT solutions for small- and mid-sized businesses.
Sage Intacct is the preferred provider of the AICPA and maintains a 98% customer satisfaction rating according to the JB Knowledge Construction Technology Report. And G2 ranked Sage Intacct as #1 in customer satisfaction in the industry.
In July of 2017, Sage announced the acquisition of Intacct and affirmed its desire to offer a best-of-class next generation cloud solution to the construction and real estate market.
With Sage and Intacct combined to create Sage Intacct for Construction, they have created a financial management solution that will allow you to streamline your construction processes, create more efficient transaction workflows, and customize dashboards all with built-in flexibility on a modern cloud platform.
Now is the time to migrate to Sage Intacct for Construction.
Manufacturing companies are often plagued with inefficiencies. These issues tend to cause a domino effect that results in customer turnover and missed sales opportunities. If you experience any of the following problems, it might be time to think about a technology upgrade.
A manufacturer faces high expectations from customers. When you struggle with taking and delivering correct orders on time, it really impacts your customer retention. We have found that one central application helps our manufacturing customers to provide a polished and streamlined customer experience. Whether through a secure customer portal or a connected online storefront, you and your customers need real-time automated communication. An ERP like Acumatica can deliver an exceptional customer experience, so customers are able to buy more with less effort.
Automations aren’t just for making your life easier, although they can certainly save a lot of time. But having automated notifications for your customers empowers them with self-service. What if you could let your customers know through automation when their products have shipped or when returns are received? Acumatica also lets you set up automations for sending customer invoices and their statements can be easily downloaded. It’s a significant time-savings on your end and provides much needed customer empowerment.
Empowering your customers with information is also a great way to grow sales. The simpler the customer experience is, the more likely they are to keep coming back and order more of your product. But this increase in demand is a juggling act between production and inventory. Many of our current Acumatica customers say they’ve been able to quickly respond to the increase in sales yet reduce inventory. This saves you money while giving your customer the best experience possible.
If you’re feeling limited by your current disconnected group of manufacturing solutions, consider migration to Acumatica. With every aspect on one single platform, you’re able to empower your employees and customers with real-time information from anywhere.
Scale as your manufacturing business grows and adapt to changing customer demand. With Acumatica, not only are you creating loyal customers, you’re also able to add users at no extra cost. This is a big savings for a growing manufacturer.
Learn more about Acumatica Manufacturing Edition here or reach out to me directly. We would be honored to add your business to our growing group of happy Acumatica customers.
Having access to key data analytics can help keep construction projects on course, on time and on budget.
Construction projects can be a torrent of activity with supplies, equipment, contractors and laborers coming and going at all hours of the day, and even into the night. When coordinated effectively, the hustle and bustle can appear like a work of art with people and equipment moving in a planned and timely manner so that project progresses seamlessly.
For this coordinated effort to work, project managers need to know what is happening across all areas of their projects. They need to keep supplies moving, equipment running and contractors and labors paid. Even the slightest delay in shipments, prolonged machine downtime or late paycheck could impact if and when the project is completed. What can help is access to the right data at the right time to the right people.
Information drives decision-making, and having the right information can make a big difference in how effective projects operate. Project managers are likely managing multiple jobs and need specific job-related info, as well as the ability to drill down to see associated costs about their jobs. Work-in-progress reports are critical in tracking the financial performance of projects and are heavily relied on to review the progress of construction contracts underway at any given time.
Like project managers, job supervisors need access to data about their specific projects with up-to-date information on labor-specific budget to hours and an understanding of crew-level productivity. Without access to this information, supervisors may not have a clear picture of their true labor or costs and not have the ability to adapt to keep projects on track and on budget.
Data analytics allows project managers and supervisors to make decisions based on statistical facts. These facts are used to guide choices about everything from suppliers to labor, allowing them to evaluate every aspect of the project. Data analytics can deliver actionable insights to help them making crucial operational decisions.
The right data needs to be accessible at the right time. When access to information is easy, reliable and convenient, project managers and supervisors can make informed decisions when they need to, from wherever they are. Time is a critical component to the project site. The coordinated effort that keeps projects moving requires people, materials and supplies to be on time. Delays create ripples that impact the project timeline and potentially delay future phases and stages of the project. Rather than risk losing more time waiting on traditional reporting solutions and analysis, project managers and supervisors need access to real-time or close to real-time data on the job site so they can base their decisions on the most recent and accurate information.
The time frames that project managers have to respond are shrinking and because contractors, suppliers and laborers need information fast, there’s a pressure to react faster. Mobile, real-time data analytics can pave the way for decision makers to pivot when necessary and resolve issues more efficiently.
When it comes to data, it’s important that the right information is delivered at the right time to the right people. For many contractors, project-level data may not make it past the executive for finance department. Data truly needs to be in the hands of the people on-site so they can quickly and effectively resolve issues before they become challenges, and find opportunities to reduce costs, increase productivity and drive profitability. Not only can project managers and supervisors take greater ownership over their sites, they can also manage their own reporting needs and save time, while using the actionable insights to keep job sites moving forward.
Getting the right information to the right people at the right time requires the right solution. Whether you’re an executive, project manager or responsible for the finances, Aktion Analytics business intelligence for construction professionals gives the right people access to the information they need to manage the details that matter to their role. Aktion Analytics also integrates directly with Sage 300 and Sage 100, providing access to key project and financial information and helping you and your team to respond faster to keep projects on time, on budget.
To learn more about how business intelligence can improve your construction business, download your copy of the Value of Business Intelligence white paper.