Here’s Why You Should Rethink Your Manual Order Process
It would be great if all Sales Orders could be processed automatically! Too bad they come in different forms (paper, PDF files, email attachments, EDI, faxes etc.) and they’re all in different layout formats (some are structured while others aren’t). In a perfect world all this could be released at one time to your ERP or accounting – automatically – Simple Right?
If you’re reading this, you’re probably not there yet. When Sales Orders, Invoices and other front office documents haven’t been automated, the manual process to get them into your system chokes productivity, can cause costly data entry errors, may delay responses to customer requests, and often documents are lost or misplaced during the filing process … lost productivity impacts the company’s profitability.
And yet, many companies still running manual filing processes feel everything is just fine – are they though?
As a Service Managers, if you hire a Service Rep’s (CSRs) with impressive data entry skills, and still file documents manually there’s still room for efficiencies. There’s a good chance their competition may have already pulled ahead but these Managers may not know it. It’s tough enough and expensive to generate new business – but don’t leave money on the table by operating manually when you can justify automation usually often in the first year – all the while gaining a competitive advantage and saving money annually.
You might say ...
- We Key in Orders directly in our ERP
While ERP will provide its own management benefits, there’s still a huge cost in manually keying in the data into the system. Very labour intensive and as mentioned before, prone to data entry errors. None of the ERP vendors make an automated capture system to speed the document meta data into the ERP, often they’ll partner with a capture vendor or private label a capture software for use in the ERP – but these are usually fairly limited in capability.
- Our Data Entry is Fast
Your CSRs maybe good, but you won’t likely know when they make an error (and they will) and people take time off and the work piles up. Put your human capital to work where its more valuable than data entry – that problem’s been solved. Your employees would rather be doing something other than keying in data.
- EDI System
Although many large distributors and wholesalers process orders using an EDI system; they often spend hours on the back-end getting their expensive EDI Managers to correct those errors – but only after it messes up ERP data.
Try these questions on for size - the answers are self evident but still important
- What would it mean to your business if you could double your order processing speed and reduce data entry errors by 70% or more?
- What would it look like if your CSRs have instant access to the information that your customers are constantly asking for?
- What if your data clerks had the ability to automatically verify data before they disrupted the ERP and supply chain?
- What tasks would you assign to staff whose working hours are freed because you’ve almost eliminated manual data entry?
Summing It Up
Document automation is what we do at Connectis, and the processing solution we recommend for flexible document capture, data validation and controlled meta data export is docAlpha. Once implemented, it’ll capture and validate document content from multi-channel sources (email, fax, paper or EDI et al), apply your business logic to ensure, perform look-ups and cross-check everything against your existing databases – and once completed the data can be released for your ERP system or inserted directly into the system. Handling split order, apply GL codes and more. Customer can continue to send you orders the way they want and your docAlpha system can process it in every format. Not bad for a system that doesn’t require much data entry – and isn’t that what you want?
Once that Order’s been processed, don’t file the paper, don’t print the PDF – let the document complete the journey by automatically being inserted into the Vasion cloud document management system. You won’t lose any documents, and the important meta data you’d use to search for content travels with the file so can find all the associated documents almost immediately. No more trips to the filing cabinet, or needing a document while you’re away from the office – its all there and it happens automatically. No more wasted time. By combining several fields (Customer name, PO date, PO currency), they’ll narrow the search. CSRs can efficiently manage and resolve issues while maintaining full visibility over the whole order process — from order placement, shipping, customer issue handling right to and including document file destruction based on your rules if you wish.