How ERP Improves these 5 Departments

The most ideal IT solutions have a broad impact that spreads across your company. Rather than improving one area or adding a single new capability, they transform the way you operate enterprise-wide. This helps to ensure a positive ROI while putting your operations in a better position to serve your short and long-term strategy.

Part of the reason that ERP has become both a gold-standard and mission-critical piece of IT for most of today’s enterprises is because the effects of ERP are so wide ranging. In each one of your teams and for every one of your projects, ERP proves to be an invaluable asset. To illustrate this fact, consider how ERP improves each of these five departments:

Marketing

Effective marketing is all about smart timing and careful messaging. With ERP in place, that kind of precise approach to marketing is much easier to maintain because you have all the relevant data at your fingertips at all times. Not only are the efforts of the marketing department itself stronger, but the marketing team is able to work productively and collaboratively with other departments like sales and distribution to ensure a quality customer experience.

Sales

Today’s sales departments operate on a lot more than just charisma and tenacity. Like most business endeavors, sales has become a data-driven process that relies on sophisticated metrics and analytics to work customers seamlessly through the sales funnel. Without an ERP in place, giving form and function to the necessary data is almost impossible. But with an ERP in place, sales professionals can rely on information rather than instincts to cultivate loyal customers.

Distribution

Managing a supply chain is a huge challenge, even for a small to mid-sized enterprise. ERP allows distribution managers to get a top-down look at the entire supply chain. They can also drill down to examine specific aspects of the shipping and receiving process within the context of the whole. This makes it much easier to spot areas of inefficiency or opportunities for cost savings. It also creates a shared platform that simplifies the management of a complex supply chain with a lot of moving parts.

Finance

With the advent of big data, the traditional approach to finance has proven insufficient. Without taking into account the massive streams of financial data that it’s now possible to capture, store, and analyze, it’s much harder to make informed decisions in volatile markets. ERP finance tools allows enterprises to leverage the value of data in a deeper way. It also allows finance department to embrace a data-driven orientation, which is now more or less essential to stay competitive.

C-Suite

An ERP can lead directly to the kinds of improvements in efficiency, productivity, collaboration, and innovation that executives are always on a mission to engineer. But what is perhaps the biggest long-term advantage of having ERP in place is that it allows the member of the C-Suite to make consequential strategic decisions based on objective data rather than questionable assumptions. ERP offers the kind of broad and deep dive into the available information that executives need to make decisions with confidence.

You can implement an ERP in almost any one of your departments. And even if you implement one in just a few departments, or a single department, you can expect improvements throughout the company. That’s because ERP is the kind of tool that’s necessary for a department to operate as effectively as it possibly can. And once it does, it elevates the efforts of every other department it works with. If you are ready to turn your company into a sum that is greater than its parts, a quality ERP is essential.

Car Loans: how much is too much?

Aside from a mortgage, a car note may be the most significant loan you ever take out. But just because you have the ability to qualify for a car loan doesn’t mean that loan is fair or affordable. Many Americans today are driving around in cars they are paying too much for, and that is one group you certainly don’t want to join!

In this post, learn how much is too much to pay for a car loan and how to get a fair price on a car you can afford.

Calculate 15 Percent of Your Annual Income

Financial experts often advise clients to choose a car that will require them to dedicate no more than 15 percent of their annual income to repayment and expenses.

The average annual income nationwide is just over $53,000. So let’s say you make this amount. 15 percent is $7,950. So you will want to calculate the total cost of your new car on an annual basis to find out if the loan burden plus expenses will be workable for your financial situation.

Understand the Total Cost of a New Car

If there is one expense that new car buyers routinely forget to add into the sum total, it is car insurance. The truth is, some cars are just more expensive to insure than other cars.

For this reason, you should get a car insurance quote on the new vehicle you have your eye on before you decide to make the purchase. Then build that cost into your budget to see if your new car will be affordable.

Also be sure you have included each of the following expenses into your budget: gas, oil changes, routine maintenance, registration renewals, car insurance, loan payments.

Consider Using the 20/4/10 Rule

Another way to determine whether the car loan you are taking on may be too much is to use what experts call the 20/4/10 rule, which stands for the following:

20. The percentage of cash you put down initially as a downpayment.

4. An auto note that covers a 4-year repayment term.

10. A monthly loan repayment amount that costs no more than 10 percent of your monthly pay.

Here, don’t forget to calculate in any vehicle you plan to trade in as part of your down payment. It can be helpful to get a quote on your existing car’s trade-in value in advance so you know how much additional cash you will need to come up with for a down payment.

If you are tempted to choose a longer repayment period (many of today’s car loans can be stretched out over 5, 6, or 7 years), you may want to consider whether the car is really affordable for you, since you increase the amount you will pay in interest for each additional year of your loan term.

Check Your Credit Score, Then Seek Lending

Car buyers with excellent credit scores can qualify for the lowest interest rates on auto notes. If your credit score leaves something to be desired, you may want to contact the top credit repair companies for help before you buy a new car.

You can use this free tool to estimate how much you might save on a car note by improving your credit score.

Other factors that could improve your loan terms include putting down more money as a down payment (see here) and having a lower debt-to-income ratio. The latter tells lenders how easy or hard it may be for your to honor your debts.

Since everyone’s personal situation is unique, there is no one standard way to decide how much car loan is too much. But by evaluating your income and existing debt using these expert tools, you can decide how much car loan is too much for you.