ABM Advisor: The ABM Blog.
Category - Business and Accounting Software

  • Aug 14 2018

    The business benefits of time management software

    When it comes to keeping a business on track, time management software cannot be overlooked. Time is money, and if you're not recording it properly you won't be able to pay employees their due nor will you be able to invoice your customers properly.On top of the regular timesheet features in the base accounting software, ABM has the option for an additional jobs and timesheeting module. What benefits can it add to your business?1. You can track jobs more efficientlyKeeping on top of costs requires you know exactly what's going into a product in terms of both materials and labour. If you're not tracking time carefully, it can be easy to misunderstand what a product actually cost you to make, and therefore what you need to charge for it in order to profit. Job tracking also helps you learn how long jobs take, and gives you the opportunity to look for points in the production that can be improved.

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  • Jul 30 2018

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    What software do you need to run a successful online store?

    Running an online retail operation requires a lot of software to be successful. Using disparate software from a range of different developers can create a tangle of disconnected processes. What's preferable is an integrated, all-in-one solution - and that's exactly what ABM's Online Retail Management package delivers. It starts with a base accounting system on which your entire business can run - from there, optional modules can be added to make the software do everything and anything you could need it to do.What boxes does ABM tick for the software needs of an online retailer?An integrated e-commerce platformIn order to make any sales online, you need a platform to sell from. ABM has two optional modules that add e-commerce functionality - SPNet eCommerce or ABM eCommerce. Both create a website that's intuitive for customers to browse and find the products they're after. They both handle hosting and purchase payments, and integrate into the wider accounting platform that is ABM. Sales data goes straight into your accounting and report generating software, taking a great deal of work out of the process.Online sales require an online platform to sell from.The primary difference between the SPNet and ABM modules is the level of customisability by developers. If you want to significantly alter the functionality of your e-commerce platform, SPNet will be the option for you. If you're after a more out-of-the-box solution that doesn't need much customising, the ABM module will do they trick.Effective stock managementRunning an efficient online store requires smooth  stock management. If your product offerings fall into a style/colour/size organisation format, you'll find ABM's Structured Stock Management module incredibly effective. It provides the user the ability to manage their stock using a flexible structure, monitor stock levels and generate reports that tell you about which products contribute most to profit.Business intelligence capabilitiesOnline retail is an extremely competitive place, which is why you need to draw all the insights you can out of the data you have. That's what ABM's Alchemex Business Intelligence (BI) module is for. It's a lot more straightforward than some of the other BI tools out there, as it's based on a interface similar to Microsoft Excel - if you're familiar with that, generating reports with ABM will be a breeze.To learn more about ABM, schedule a demo today. One of our specialists will run you through the software and demonstrate how it can be tailored to your business' needs.

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  • Jul 22 2018

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    What do the new food labelling laws mean for manufacturers?

    As of July 1 when new regulations came in, all food sold in Australian retail stores must be labelled with its country of origin. For two years the labels were optional but they're now mandatory - and many Australian food manufacturers are pleased with the change.What does the new law specify and why is the change beneficial for Australian food manufacturers?What do the new food labelling laws specify?The law applies to most of the food sold retail in packages, as well as unpackaged seafood, certain meats, fruit and vegetables, herbs and spices, as well as fresh fruit and vegetables in transparent packaging. It does not apply to unpackaged food like sandwiches or baked goods, products that are only exported, and food sold in restaurants or canteens.

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  • Jun 28 2018

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    The importance of a solid CRM system

    A CRM (customer relationship management) system is a key piece of software all businesses should use to make get the best from (and for) their customers. CRM systems can improve customer retention by up to 27 per cent according to Salesforce, a number that can translate into a sizeable amount of revenue over time.Beside improved retention, what are some other benefits of CRM software?Organisation of informationCRM software centralises all of your customer data in one place. This makes it a lot easier to find and therefore easier to use.Without a CRM solution, all of the information in your business might be there, but it could be in an unusable form.Data analyticsCRM software that has all of your customer data in one place gives the possibility for data analytics to take place. Even if the CRM itself doesn't do the analysis for you, its collection of the data into one database makes it a great deal more manageable than trying to enter that data by hand.

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  • Jun 7 2018

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    Automation: Positives, negatives, limits?

    If there's a theme running through 20th century manufacturing practices, it's automation. Every day, our technology improves and the list of tasks that can only be completed by a human grows ever shorter. But despite the benefits to productivity that automation can bring, it's a process that has its limits (or at least, it does today).This has been demonstrated in recent times with some fairly high profile examples. Perhaps most vivid is the automotive and renewable energy firm Tesla, and the production of its mass-market electric sedan, the Model 3. Ambitious targets and lofty promises abound, yet Tesla has failed to produce enough vehicles in the time they said they would.What can this situation teach us about the limits of automation, and its positives and negatives?Too many robots spoil the brothTesla is a company well known for its technological prowess. It was one of the first innovators in bring fully-electric cars to the masses, and making them appeal not only to tech geeks, but wider car buyers too.All that said, even titans sometimes fall. The actual production for their latest creation, the Model 3, is far behind what was initially promised and scheduled. The reasons for this could be many, but two Wall St analysts, Max Warburton and Toni Sacconaghi, have argued that the main bottleneck in their production process is the huge amount of automation they're using in their factory. And as it happens the CEO, Elon Musk, agrees:

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  • May 22 2018

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    Should you join Australia's growing organics market?

    The organic food market in Australia is currently in the midst of a boom. According to the recently released Australian Organic Market Report 2018, the total value of the market sits somewhere around $2.4 billion dollars. The same report states one in six Australian households has purchased organic products in the last year.With ABM's manufacturing module, making the shift into new market segments is manageable. But what are organics and is adding them to your product portfolio a good idea?What is 'organic' in Australia?While the common meaning of organic is to be produced without the benefits of artificial chemicals, there are specific criteria products must meet  to be certified organic.There are six separate organisations in Australia that can certify goods as organic - products need to meet at least one of these party's criteria before they can be sold as organic.For food products to be certified organic in Australia, they have to meet a number of criteria.A fast growing marketThe organics market is growing at a rapid pace. Compared with 2016, an additional 384,000 households purchased organic products in 2017 and the market grew by 13.6 per cent overall, according to the Australian Organic Market Report 2018Andrew Monk, the chair of Australia Organic said that the millennial generation was driving the majority of the demand."Millennials know more, they demand more and they expect more," he recently told the AAP.For them, the increased price is justified for the peace of mind eating organic products brings. Fortunately for organic food manufacturers, millennials are only growing as a proportion of the food buying market. Currently, cost is the greatest barrier to people buying organic, according to the Organic Market Report. As the purchasing power of millennials increases, those who want to buy organic but currently can't afford to will begin to enter this premium market.How can you expand into organics?There are some hoops to jump through but if you can find a niche that's profitable it may well be worth doing entering the organics sector. Organic products often retail for a far greater price than their non-organic counterparts. Providing you can find a manufacturing process and suppliers that keep your costs low enough, organic products command a premium that others can't. In an era of $1 supermarket milk, going organic is one of the few surefire ways to both command a higher price for your product and still have a customer base willing to make the purchases.For more information on how ABM's software can take your food manufacturing operation to the next level, request a no-obligation product demo today.

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  • May 9 2018

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    Innovation in the Australian food manufacturing industry

    The Australian food manufacturing industry is a place where innovation thrives. It's a sector that's often under pressure due to slim margins, high inputs and fierce competition.It's also an industry that faces many troubles, one of the most significant being the massive amount of food that's wasted both pre and post consumer. Here we take a look at the efforts of one company, Freeze Dry Industries, to minimise food waste and increase revenues for food manufacturers.Food waste in AustraliaAustralia has a food waste problem. That's not quite fair - the world has a food waste problem, in which Australia plays its part. Approximately a third of the food produced worldwide each year for human consumption is wasted, according to the United Nations. In absolute terms, that's some 1.3 billion tonnes being lost or destroyed every year.A great deal of food is wasted before it even hits supermarket shelves because it's too ugly. A series run by ABC called "War on Waste" revealed, for example, that banana farmers are sometimes forced to throw away 40 per cent of their crop yield because the bananas don't fit the standards that supermarkets and other retailers set. 

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  • Apr 30 2018

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    3 tips for better food inventory management

    This too is a feature of ABM's manufacturing module. A visual presentation of your production schedules and capacity loads lets you plan efficient production runs. The integrated power of ABM means these schedules can be sent and linked to other aspects of the production chain.Getting your inventory under control is easy when you have the right software. For more information on what ABM can do for your business, get in touch today.

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  • Mar 23 2018

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    Why your business needs to have an e-commerce division

    The mid-1990s saw e-commerce explode into the consumer consciousness. At the time, it seemed an unassailable truth that the internet would transform the way business is done - an idea the subsequent bursting of the dot-com bubble seemed to rapidly deflate.But almost 20 years have passed since that low, and now more than ever does the internet seem to embody the lofty expectations those early pioneers expected it would. E-commerce is a huge part of the Australian economy, and it's only going to grow further.In 2018, your business needs an e-commerce division. Here's why.The state of the e-commerce marketUnlike those early days, online shopping is no longer something only the savviest of computer users engage in. Australians spent roughly $24.7 billion on online sales over the twelve months to January 2018, according to the latest NAB Online Retail Sales Index (ORSI) report. This, the report explains further, is equivalent to 7.9 per cent of the spending at bricks-and-mortar retailers in the twelve months to December 2017.

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  • Feb 23 2018

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    Australian manufacturing maintains its momentum to kick off 2018

    Few industries in the world have come close to the success that Australian manufacturing has had over the last year.The sector recently hit its 16th straight month of improvement, the longest stretch it has had since 2005, Business Insider reported. With all the prosperity comes a tall task for organisations, though: Staving off competitors and supporting greater capacity for work. With business management software, that's easier than ever.A look at the numbersThe Ai Group's Performance of Manufacturing Index (PMI) tracks the sector's growth rate. Any score over 50 shows improvement, and the distance that figure is away from 50 suggests the speed with which it's happening at. In the first month of 2018 the PMI rose 2.5 points, signifying that it's not only expanding but doing so quickly as well, according to Business Insider.

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