Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) is commonly known in the field of project management today. Although definitions may vary, an ERP essentially refers to the comprehensive management of basic business processes using software and technology. In Gabler Wirtschaftslexikon becomes an ERP system is defined as follows:
"An enterprise resource planning system (ERP system) supports all of a company's business processes. It contains modules for the areas of procurement, production, sales, asset management, human resources, finance and accounting, etc., which are linked together via a common database."
A significant challenge when dealing with an ERP, especially for consultancies and other service companies, is that ERP software is very product-centred and generic. This proves to be too generic for many companies to fulfil their specific requirements regarding the provision of billable services in the project business. As a result, PSA software is becoming increasingly important in project-orientated companies.
PSA stands for Professional Services Automation. It is a cloud-based platform or software that links your internal workflows. The software offers functions such as time tracking, project management, resource management, invoicing and reporting. As a rule, you can easily integrate PSA software into payroll or CRM systems.
PSA software can be found in various industries in which the accounting of working time plays a central role - for example in IT service providers, in Agencies, Management consultancies, Engineering offices or Law firms. The functions of PSA software, particularly in these industries, are designed to support project management throughout the entire course of a project - from the initial offer to invoicing the customer. The software optimises your central project processes and also takes into account factors that are difficult to measure. Customisation - as with extensive ERP systems - to your business requirements is not necessary.
Are you responsible for time-critical projects? Then the use of suitable professional services automation software is an indispensable necessity in your day-to-day business. After all, time is your most precious resource! The benefit of PSA software is that you are able to automate and optimise all internal processes that form the basis for converting time into profit. And these are the fundamental advantages:
With the help of Professional Services Automation, you as a project manager have the opportunity to control and optimise project workflows and processes over the entire course of a project. At the same time, all departments have access to all essential information at all times. Information regarding the project plan and progress. The software offers you an uncomplicated way to improve the collaboration of your project team, regardless of their current locations. Keyword: Cross-location project work.
By using PSA software, you create a transparent overview of past, current and future project tasks. At the same time, the software makes it easier for you to provide your customers with more efficient and accurate status reports. In the event of last-minute changes to the project plan - and these occur more frequently than you might think - all project participants can be informed immediately. The software also helps you to coordinate and distribute all tasks more quickly and with less effort. This means that important information does not get lost in the project process.
As a service provider, you are confronted with numerous time-consuming manual tasks every day, which not only take up time and energy, but also bring with them an increased potential for errors. Especially if you as a project manager want to increase the efficiency of your project team, these manual tasks are often a challenge that can lead to unwanted costs.
Implementing automation solutions not only enables you to save valuable time and resources, but also allows your team to focus more on the actual work. Manual tasks are reduced to a minimum through the use of PSA software.
One concrete example is the automated reconciliation of the recorded working hours of all project employees with the planned budget. With suitable software, you can create the invoice for a project virtually at the touch of a button. This automated project invoicing provides you with considerable relief as you are freed from time-consuming administrative tasks.
Resource planning is also often a challenge in the dynamic environment of project-orientated companies, as several orders and projects often have to be handled simultaneously. Keyword: Multi-project management. This is where PSA software can help you allocate resources more efficiently to prevent bottlenecks in advance.
By integrating automation and accurate time tracking, you gain valuable insight into the exact distribution of your project team's working hours, allowing you to respond quickly and accurately. Accurate time tracking of your team minimises the risk of time overruns and also ensures that all billable hours are invoiced correctly.
PSA software acts as a shield to prevent resource overbooking and seamlessly coordinate the planning of multiple parallel projects. As a project manager, you ultimately want to optimise the success of your projects. That's why the accurate recording of working and project times is a decisive factor for the success of your project! Monitoring overtime not only ensures that you stay on schedule and within budget, but also prevents your team from being overloaded. This not only increases the efficiency of your projects, but also improves the overall performance of your team.
Are narrow profit margins a challenge in your project business? The Profitability of a project can be decisive for the success or failure of a company. PSA software helps you to accurately calculate costs, set prices and identify profitable projects. By using such software, you take your project planning and decision-making to the next level. Instead of just relying on gut instinct, you get real-time data on your projects, which you can use to make informed decisions on how to proceed.
Reporting functions allow you to identify trends, sales opportunities and risks. They provide insight into which customers and projects are truly profitable and which may need improvement. Automated project invoicing also ensures that your customers receive their invoices on time and that unpaid invoices can be systematically tracked. All in all, this leads to improved cash flow and increases the profitability of your projects.
What if you could cover all the requirements of a PPE system with one cloud-based software tool? It's possible with ZEP! The tool offers you a customised and modular solution that you can integrate seamlessly into your project business. The software digitalises almost all your needs in the hectic day-to-day running of a project - from preparing quotations to project controlling and automated invoicing.
Accurate recording of labour and project hours is crucial for the profitability of your projects. The ZEP module presence enables the display of recorded attendances, the linking of smartphones and tablets as Mobile time clock via app and the individual activation of attendance recording for each employee. Pure time recording can be conveniently carried out via the web front end, app for iOS and Android or at the ZEP terminal take place. The Overtime, Absences & Holidays module is available for managing absences, allowing you to digitally manage all of your team's absences.
Efficient resource planning is the key to avoiding bottlenecks and optimising productivity - ZEP impresses here with the Resource planning modulewhich enables you to plan projects over the long term. The Module Planned Hours supports your project planning right from the start by allowing you to define fixed or dynamic target figures. And with the Module Tickets, Tasks & To-dos you can divide your projects into individual tasks for each employee. You can read more about creating to-do lists in this article.
ZEP supports you in your project management process with powerful functions. The Offers module enables you to create quotations in a time-saving manner, making manual processes a thing of the past. With the Prices & Receipts Module Ensure the profitability of your projects by defining prices and comparing sales with internal costs. The invoicing module enables you to issue invoices quickly and easily at the end of a project on the basis of the recorded expenses.
With ZEP, you no longer need any other PSA solution. It is a strategic tool for achieving your goals. If you have any questions, the support team will be happy to assist you.
Content Marketing Manager at ZEP
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