The Desire for Agile Sales

Posted on

18th September 2017


Nick Smith

What does agile sales mean?

The word agile means – Ability to move quickly and easily. Let’s apply that to sales, the ability to move quickly and easily when a business opportunity presents itself.

You may have created a niche product and want to get it to market ahead of your competition or a customer may simply require proposals or solutions in a time sensitive manner.

Without a proficient management system in place you will be one step behind. The objective is to reduce wasteful activities and produce faster delivery of quotes, orders and services.

Think of a gymnast, they embody agility. A gymnast can change direction, move quickly and adjust to the environment whilst maintaining balance and control.

Can the same be said of your business?

Provide winning quotes fast

The ability to work anytime anywhere with an online management platform such as Omono means you can visit a customer one minute and provide a quote before you leave them or on the go simply tethering an internet connection from your mobile phone.

Omono allows you not only access to sales but also stock levels on the go and current workflow, allowing accurate lead times, all on one system.

Flexible quote revisions

Requirements change, you must react timely with accurate sales quote revisions.

With most systems, it can be complicated to revise a quote whilst preserving the history. Having agility would mean a system keeping all revisions and allowing you to convert not only the current quote but any quote in the chain of revisions.

Scheduled dispatches

If your business can easily adapt to the needs of your customers you will achieve agile status. Customers my request goods to be called forward or dispatched on multiple shipments. It is important therefore to have a responsive sales orders module that allows ultimate control over order dispatches which can clearly be seen in your workflow module.

Currency and Margin Control

Whether you import in foreign currencies or sell around the globe you should be set up to handle at least EUR and USD. When buying in various currencies it represents a far higher ROI if your management system can handle to conversions seamlessly, showing accurate margins when selling to customers. Handling all the difficult calculations for you, allowing a far greater focus on the customer experience and their needs. But ultimately ensuring you are always achieving the margin you require.

Take a moment to think about Purchasing

Don’t forget you can’t sell what you don’t have. A cornerstone of being agile is responsive purchasing. Maintain minimum stock levels based on accurate forecasts and reporting of your demand by product category or even individual item.

Purchasing triggered by demand alerts prevents oversight of items that are required to fulfil current or future orders.

At Omono we believe in the people that make a business agile. A defined vision for the business with strong communication allows the team to work as a unit and achieve great things.

To help keep track of all your great work we have introduced an intuitive activity feed visible from any screen, feel the buzz of teamwork from all departments with the ability to drill down when something gets your eye.

When all the good work takes your business to new highs be sure to have a live dashboard to track how often you crush your targets!

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Best Practices we Love for Inventory Tracking

Posted on

11th September 2017


Nick Smith

As your small business grows so too will your required stock levels.

Keeping track of these increasing levels is easier said than done. As an SME in a competitive marketplace its important you have the ability to act fast, therefore forecasting your stock becomes imperative.

Inventory is money, both in potential income but wasted it will become lost income.

Avoid excess stock

Having too much of certain items can lead to lost revenue and reduced profits on the stock previously sold. If the stock is perishable or line close to discontinuation it becomes even more important to avoid excess stock.

Avoid 0 Stock

0 Stock is when you have nothing in stock for a particular item. This is a disaster for the business, missing out on sales and perhaps losing customers to the competition for life. Ensuring a minimum stock level is vital in preventing lost sales.

So we need to find the ‘Just right’ stock level. How do we achieve this? The following best practice ideas will move you closer to your goal of ‘Just right’.

Proper Cataloging

As your required stock volume grows so will your range of products, therefore categorizing your stock items correctly will help track them more efficiently.

A system like Omono will also help report on the various product stock categories in your business helping predict trends and make better strategic decisions going forward.

Maintain Minimum Stock Levels (MSL)

Setting minimum stock levels help safeguard your business, ensuring popular product lines do not fall below a specified quantity of which you feel can meet demand.

It can be difficult to set MSL’s for items, this is where a system like Omono that tracks your 12 month usage with intuitive widgets provides accurate information that simply highlights how popular the item is, in turn what your MSL should be.

In Omono stock items are flagged as insufficient the instant they fall below your chosen minimum stock level (MSL) or an order is placed for a higher quantity than you have in stock.

Re-Ordering must be simple

There will be occasions where you find yourself with not enough stock but the idea is to have a system in place that helps you spot this straight away and place the necessary purchase order. You do NOT want customers looking around for alternative suppliers.

Omono allows you to quickly place purchase orders from approved suppliers and will also predict the unit quantities you need to place for demand, saving your bacon.

First in First out (FIFO)

The FIFO way sells your oldest items first ensuring you aren’t left with old stock on the shelves.

To manage this it is important to organize your stores in a manner that when picking occurs the warehouse staff do not simply take the newest items first.

Using Omono’s document storage, you can track batch or serial number certificates, providing the staff with control over educated picking.

Accurate and effective inventory management is vital to the business’s operation, however it shouldn’t drain your valuable resources to manage.

By implementing a modern all in one solution like Omono you can track stock, place purchase orders and manage your entire workflow with ease.

Streamline your business saving your most valuable resource, time.

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Top 5 Reasons Not to Run Your Business with Excel and Word

Posted on

4th September 2017


Nick Smith

Excel inventory management and word sales paperwork and invoices are doing more damage to your business than you realise.

If you are starting out or operating a 1-2 person operation it may seem fine to track your inventory in excel and quote / invoice your customers modifying templates in word. However this will significantly hinder your growth and ability to control it.

If you aspire to grow the business it really is time for an integrated management platform that looks after the CRM, operations, inventory, sales and purchasing. Giving greater control, reduced admin time providing you the ability to focus on the things you love.

5 Problems of Excel and Word for your business

1. Slow Customer response time

As the customer is your livelihood providing great customer service and quick responses is imperative to the success and growth of your business. From providing clear and concise quotations promptly to tracking shipments, your ability to meet their demands is the deciding factor for future orders.

Word may offer the chance to free type any quote or order you like, this may seem flexible but it offers no traceability such as stock control. You also have no idea of available stock when quoting lead times or margin control based on bill of materials.

2. Wasting time on admin

Multiple surveys have shown that SME’s without integrated management software are forced to waste time on admin, keeping them from growing the business and developing products.

Word and Excel require far greater human input to ensure they are kept up to date and accurate, this not only wastes time but relies heavily on attention to detail in preventing errors and often will not highlight an error until its too late – leading to an unhappy customer.

3. Scalability issues

You have a good product and established demand that it is growing, now is the time to react quickly and fulfil. Outdated procedures are inflexible to scale and tie you down like an anchor. As the demands grow and failure to fulfil occurs the demand will fall as quicker than it grew.

4. Lack of live reporting

In the fast paced environment of an SME, stock is being purchased, received, sold and shipped and your Excel spreadsheet hasn’t been updated in time.

Quickly you fall out of sync with what you actually have in stores and what’s required for outstanding orders.

Even if you update inventory every day it will never be as accurate or instant as a purpose built online inventory system.

5. Poor visibility

With your whole business hidden in documents stored on varies machines or servers it proves near impossible for good overall vision of how the business is performing.

Finding orders, checking stock levels producing reports. These actions should be easily accessible but the disjointed nature of word and excel simply won’t allow.

So what’s the alternative?

A system that collects data through standard operation and allows the creation of actionable reports.

Online, live tracking of your inventory which offers quick and powerful search of items.

Reduce time spent re-keying invoices and bills into your accounts system.

Improve your workflow vision and process to prevent any bottlenecks.

Why not try Omono, the online suite of integrated modules that help streamline your business boosting sales and reducing costs.

Try now for free.

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