If you’re seeking a cannabis license then chances are your state requires you to implement a seed-to-sale software in order to qualify. But when it comes to finding the right cannabis software for you, digging through your options can be a bit challenging. ERPs are one of the many options cannabis operators should consider when shopping for cannabis compliant software. But what is an ERP?
ERP stands for Enterprise Resource Planning, a type of software that allows users to integrate their company’s accounting, supply chain management, customer relations, manufacturing, and employee management.
An ERP integrates all of an organization’s departments into a single platform giving users the ability to plan and implement processes based on their company’s financial data.
While many seed-to-sale software specialize in a few core areas, in order to truly be an ERP, your cannabis business software must be a master of all trades. For this reason, ERPs are becoming increasingly appealing to cannabis operators, and as a result more and more cannabis software are marketing themselves as an ERP.
But is your cannabis software really an ERP?
Top 5 features to look for in a Cannabis ERP
If you’re searching for a true cannabis seed-to-sale ERP, then there are five key features to keep in mind. While many cannabis may market themselves as an ERP, be sure to check if they have the following features before making your decision.
Any ERP must be developed around a universal data structure that maintains its integrity throughout the platform. This creates an universal language within the system which facilitates the operational processes of multiple departments and work processes. Not only does this unify the user experience, but the data collected along the way will naturally weave together the greater operational impact of each action. Outcomes will be implemented across reports, analytics, and any other relevant features throughout the ERP platform..
Without this unifying language, each department would be operating in separate databases without the information needed to make intelligent business decisions.
Cannabis ERPs must have a method to record and track historical sales data. This is essential for maintaining compliance for your state’s regulations. For states that service medical cannabis customers, this feature set is even more important. Medical cannabis operators must maintain lengthy historical records on past customer purchases, cannabis purchase limits, and customer personal information. For business-to-business operators, it is especially important to maintain information like invoice histories and cannabis license details about their customers.
A fully integrated POS is an essential aspect of any cannabis ERP as it allows operators to seamlessly implement compliant practices around the selling of cannabis products. Additionally, historical sales data and customer information can influence a greater understanding of customer purchase behaviors, employee performance, inventory measures, and accounting measures.
ERPs must be able to maintain universal integration with hardware throughout an entire organization. Hardware integrations are essential as they give cannabis operators the ability to track data points wherever there is employee action such as the movement of inventory, the development of a product, or the sale of an item. ERPs will not require that you utilize an additional system or interface in order to operate your essential hardware.
ERP systems can be deployed on-premise, through the cloud, or as a hybrid of both. It is becoming increasingly popular for ERP platforms to come in the form of an app. But while most ERP platforms specialize in a specific method of deployment, any ERP that comes in the form of an app, is simply an app.
ERPs are designed to be implemented system-wide throughout an entire enterprise whether that includes one or multiple locations. While apps may be able to implement a pleasant user experience, they often lack the ability to integrate hardware systems and global software processes in the way an on-premise or cloud-based ERP would.
5. Accounting Capabilities
Any system that does not provide accounting functions is simply not an ERP. After all, ERP platforms must be able to receive data about sales and purchasing costs, as well as manage the cost operations involved in business functions like manufacturing, distribution, or even ecommerce..
Unlike the standard cannabis POS or inventory management software, a true seed-to-sale ERP must show cannabis operators the full effect of their operational processes on their bottom line. ERPs record the full scope of data that enters the system and then ensure that the correct amounts are represented on the organization's accounts and general ledger.
Choose the right software for you
In the cannabis industry, there continues to be an ever-growing range of business operations software on the market. If you’re looking to get your cannabis license or simply looking to change systems, it’s impossible to truly consider your options without looking at an ERP solution. Because “ERP” has become something of a buzzword in the cannabis industry as of late, it’s important to determine if the cannabis ERP you're looking at is actually an ERP. If you’re looking for an adaptable, fully developed cannabis ERP, then look no further, Proteus 420 is a cloud-based ERP that gives cannabis operators the flexibility of a monthly SaaS (software as a subscription service) along with enterprise level capability.
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