Four things your manufacturing business could be focusing on during the lockdown
While it’s true that manufacturing companies have been affected by the lockdown, and lots of warehouses are starting to open up and some still remain closed, many are using this time to assess and improve their business processes.
Within these businesses, there is a real hunger to improve the efficiency of these processes so that they are ready when the economy starts picking up again, and when orders start increasing.
In this article we are going to look at four parts of your business that you should be focusing on during the lockdown and upcoming months.
1) Your sales process:
Lots of manufacturers will be using an ‘off the shelf’ CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system like Hubspot so that their sales teams are able to record the conversations they have with prospects, and the sales they make.
Using an off the shelf piece of software will often mean that you lack functionality for tasks that are specific to your business. It’s important to remember that off the shelf solutions were built with no specific requirements in mind.
During the current lockdown and coming weeks, we recommend assessing how efficient your sales process is. For example, it’s worth asking yourself how professional your quotes appear to potential customers and if you are getting your quotes to customers before your competition.
2) Your order tracking:
We often find that once a customer makes an order, and the sale is recorded within the business’s CRM system, the order is then manually logged into a separate piece of software so that the manufacturing department is aware and can begin their work.
The manufacturing department will, in most cases, have their own way of tracking the order.
We would recommend looking at whether there have been any errors during the ordering and manufacturing stage, and how susceptible your process is to these errors. It’s better planning to avoid an issue than reacting to one.
3) Your invoicing and finances:
We recently spoke to a business that was constantly missing invoices because they use two or
three different systems to track their financials.
Tracking who needs to pay an invoice, and if they have paid their invoice, is important, but carrying out these two activities (and more) can mean that some transactions fall through the cracks.
During this time we recommend looking at how you are tracking your invoices, how these correlate with the sales records you have, and if there have been any errors. The more potential issues you isolate now, the more you can plan to avoid them in the future.
4) How do your processes work together?
It’s likely that the above three points will cover the main departments within your business, but isolating the issues within each area will only help to assess some of the issues you may be encountering.
A key area you should focus on during this lockdown and quieter time is how these departments, and their individual processes, work together.
For example, how does the tracking system in the warehouse work with the software being used by the finance team to ensure invoices, receipts and reminders are sent at the correct times?
With more than 15 years of experience in the software development industry, we have helped a number of businesses, in lots of industries, implement or improve the digital transformation of their business.
If you would like to find out more about how we can help you streamline your business processes, automate tasks, and grow revenue, then please get in touch.