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What are some key areas in which ERP systems can yield additional cost savings?

Describing it at a very high level, companies can address efficiency issues by increasing the amount of automation (usually by reducing spreadsheet use or keying/re-keying data); redefining processes to eliminate unnecessary steps or increase commonality; increasing their use of electronic data links to customers, suppliers or partners (or even within their organization if they have not done it already); replacing paper documents with scanned images; and saving time by having computers count the beans and letting people manage by exception.

Increasing the use of end-to-end processes is one concrete way companies can use their ERP systems to increase efficiency. We found only half of the companies have implemented an order-to-cash process, even though it usually cuts the effort needed to manage transactions and shortens the cycle.