Many of our customers slow down during the holiday season – they have limited staff and/or run leaner. This is a great time of year to look at projects that have been kicked down the road during 2021 or from prior years. Taking care of any software-related business improvement projects while volumes are lower and people have a little more room to think and plan can put your business ahead in the New Year.

Make the most of any holiday lulls. Encompass can help you take care of those projects that you have been deferring so you can fine tune your business for 2022.

Example Business Improvement Projects

Encompass can help you implement an array of straightforward, effective business improvement projects that will help cope with higher volumes and unforeseen disruptions. Some examples include:

  • Building out your CRM system to provide better customer service in 2022
  • Conducting a Business Process Review (BPR)
  • Establish an online eCommerce storefront for your business
  • Installing Infoworker to seamlessly allow your staff to connect to your CRM system
  • Preparing to analyze prior years’ data with BI tools like EDA
  • Looking at tools to help you better forecast and budget with each new year
  • Considering shop-floor, device-based control systems like EWMW
  • Schedule a workshop to implement inventory cycle counting

Have ideas you want to implement but just don’t know how to go about getting started? Contact us today and we’ll put our head’s together to make your idea’s a reality.

About Encompass Solutions

Encompass Solutions is a business and software consulting firm that specializes in ERP systems, EDI, and Managed Services support for Manufacturers. Serving small and medium-sized businesses since 2001, Encompass modernizes operations and automates processes for hundreds of customers across the globe. Whether undertaking full-scale implementation, integration, and renovation of existing systems, Encompass provides a specialized approach to every client’s needs. By identifying customer requirements and addressing them with the right solutions, we ensure our clients are equipped to match the pace of Industry.


Manufacturers are quite familiar with feeling the squeeze of constrained talent pools. This can be said for just about every department of a business. When it comes to ERP staff, qualified individuals can be tough to come by even in healthy job markets. This becomes even more apparent when seeking ERP staff with backgrounds that align with the unique needs of manufacturing businesses. Remote Staff Augmentation, also known as Virtual Staff Augmentation, for manufacturers is one answer to the problem of finding qualified staff to keep your manufacturing business running at peak performance.

Whether you’re working on the road, at home, or onsite, Encompass has the capacity to supplement ERP staff remotely with remote workforce augmentation.

What is Remote Workforce Augmentation?

Remote Workforce Augmentation is the ability to supplement your internal staffing needs with employees, contracted or otherwise, that operate remotely and generally interact with a business by virtual means.

Why use Remote Workforce Augmentation?

There are many reasons why a company would choose to leverage Remote Workforce Augmentation for their ERP needs. This includes everything from simple system checks and reviews to advanced projects and ongoing support.

Some of the most common pain points for manufacturers that lead to leveraging remote workforce augmentation include:

  • Being overburdened with incoming orders or outgoing purchase orders
  • Achieving business goals
  • Running regular reports
  • Adding ERP coverage without bringing on new employees
  • Bridging gaps between office staff and departments

If you are experiencing any of these pain points or have a few that you think may qualify for remote workforce augmentation and IT support, Encompass has the right person for you.

How Encompass Provides Remote Workforce Augmentation

Companies that cannot afford or do not have a need for fulltime ERP staff will want to consider Remote Workforce Augmentation. This arrangement is one where the company will contract their ERP work and support requirements out to a third party, in this case Encompass Solutions, Inc. (ESI).

ESI will provide several levels of support for a business to evaluate when considering remote workforce augmentation, which includes:

  • Supplementing your ERP staff
  • Bridging gaps during personnel turnover
  • Supporting teams with those on Maternity/Paternity leave
  • Quote/Order Entry
  • Job Creation/Closing
  • Purchase Order Entry
  • AR Invoicing
  • Shipping Notifications
  • Manual EDI processing
  • Transitioning back to your team if needed

Depending on your level of requirements, you may choose a basic or more comprehensive offering. Use your procedures – we’ll do the work!

Get started with Encompass Remote Workforce Augmentation

If you are ready to supplement internal operations with ESI staff or would like a review of your internal processes to find the best solution to your needs, we can help you get started.

It all starts with an informal review of your current process, which includes:

  • Order Entry
  • Purchase Order Entry
  • Customer Statements
  • and more

As part of the process, your business will provide Encompass with your procedures and our team will execute this according to your business processes and requirements.

Following that, ESI will document our progress throughout the day, providing regular reports and communications to your team or “next in line” person to make sure you are always kept up to date.

If you are ready to have the conversation around your IT support and remote workforce augmentation needs, contact Encompass today.

About Encompass Solutions

Encompass Solutions is a business and software consulting firm that specializes in ERP systems, EDI, and Managed Services support for Manufacturers. Serving small and medium-sized businesses since 2001, Encompass modernizes operations and automates processes for hundreds of customers across the globe. Whether undertaking full-scale implementation, integration, and renovation of existing systems, Encompass provides a specialized approach to every client’s needs. By identifying customer requirements and addressing them with the right solutions, we ensure our clients are equipped to match the pace of Industry.

What’s your hull?  When was the last time you dry-docked your business?  How can you leverage COVID-19 shutdowns and downturns to revitalize your core business systems to emerge stronger, faster, and leaner after the pandemic storms have passed?

If you’re like us, you’ve spent a lot of time asking critical questions about how COVID-19 will affect you, your employees, and the future of your business.   At Encompass, we’ve been talking a lot about dry dock.  When a ship needs critical work on its hull, it is pulled out of the water into a ‘dry dock’ for inspection and repairs.

This is hugely expensive.  It’s hugely inconvenient, too.  Taking a ship out of water is the equivalent of locking the doors of your business.  We all do that for holidays (fun and predictable), year-end inventories (predictable but never fun), and occasionally because life is unpredictable and sends us surprises like snowstorms and power outages.  But most of us have never shut down our businesses for an extended period of weeks or months the way a ship is taken out of the water for months in dry dock.

COVID-19 changes that.  Some of you sent staff home and locked the gates.  Some of you feel like the gates are locked anyway because your customers are sheltering in place at home.  Some of you saw your entire supply chain shut down and fall apart.  In some way or another, most of us are in dry dock right now.  It’s expensive, outside our control, and hugely inconvenient.

If we’re all dry-docked anyway, how can we take advantage of a complete system shut down and upgrade our business ‘ships?

What’s your hull? When was the last time you dry-docked your business?

If your business is a ship in dry dock, the hull represents your critical systems.  Do you have areas of your business that desperately need overhauling, but they are too integrated in your daily routine to ever take them offline?  This could be:

  • Network and server setup that impacts the security of your systems.
  • ERP modules you paid for but never implemented.
  • Part BOMs that have been inaccurate for years.
  • Financial, engineering, and manufacturing configurations that drive you and your staff crazy.
  • Cleaning up old, bad MRP data so your ERP can run MRP, scheduling, and purchasing accurately.

Encompass is using our own dry-dock time to upgrade and improve the systems that run our business.  We’re keeping staff engaged on continuous improvement projects we never have time to work on when we’re running at full capacity.  And since we are working on systems, this can all be done remotely.

What can you do to improve your systems?  Right now, your best staff members are probably sitting idle.  They’re afraid of COVID-19.  They’re afraid of losing their jobs.  And they’ve been frustrated for years because they know how to improve your systems but never have time to work on them.

How can you leverage the recent shutdowns and downturns?  Can you use idle time to revitalize your core systems?  What will make you stronger, faster, and leaner once this storm blows past?

Do you need our help?

If you’re reading this, know that Encompass chooses who we partner with.  We pick and choose customers, and we’re with you today because we fundamentally believe in your business.  We want you to survive and thrive.

If you do need help, we started preparing ‘dry dock support’ packages for our customers in late January, and we’re geared up to offer support with:

  • Remote workshops on all core Epicor modules to help your team identify best practices, plan, prep, implement, and process improvements across the system.
  • Rapid implementation of new modules. Right now is the easiest time you’ll ever have implementing scheduling, quality assurance, landed cost, and other new functionality.
  • Report development and customer and supplier communications right out of Epicor.
  • Coaching on how to optimize projects when your team is working from home.

Let us know what you need.  Or just touch base and let us know you, your team, and your families are OK.  We like you as people, and we like being in business with you.  We’re all in this together.

About Encompass Solutions

Encompass Solutions is a business and software consulting firm that specializes in ERP systems, EDI, and Managed Services support for Manufacturers and Distributors. Serving small and medium-sized businesses since 2001, Encompass has helped modernize operations and automate processes for hundreds of customers across the globe. Whether undertaking full-scale implementation, integration, and renovation of existing systems, Encompass provides a specialized approach to every client’s needs. By identifying customer requirements and addressing them with the right solutions, we ensure our clients are equipped to match the pace of Industry.

It’s no secret that the manufacturing landscape is changing constantly and new technologies are emerging faster than ever. It is for these reasons that identifying which technologies will give your enterprise a competitive edge and allow it to weather the storm of disruption is essential. Adopting a unified ERP system to more efficiently connect and organize your operations is one such advantage. Here’s a list of 10 things you can do to ensure your ERP implementation is a success once you’ve identified which solution is right for your enterprise. For more info on ERP consultants, ERP implementation strategies, and more, download our free guide for 8 Essential ERP Selection Strategies.

1. Pick The Right Partner For The Job: ERP Consultants, Vendors, and Partners

Who you enlist to assist with your implementation is a crucial component of ensuring your success, if not the most important factor contributing to the outcome project.

Don’t add yours to the long line of inefficient and outright failed ERP implementations by doing your due diligence and identifying a vendor, partner, ERP consultants firm, or other organization that speaks to your needs and connects with your organization, its goals, and desired outcomes. You and your teams will likely be working with these ERP experts for months on end, so it’s important to connect not just on a professional level, but a personal one too. After all, if you’re collaborating with someone you can’t stand, there is little chance the project will survive such a strained working relationship.

Trust your partner to know how to manage the project since it’s likely they’ve completed several implementations across an array of industries. It may mean giving up some control you’re used to maintaining, but the success of your project trumps comfort, without question.

2. Pick The Right Solution For Your Situation: Not All ERP Solutions Are Built Alike

There are ERP platforms that have been around for decades and ERP solutions that were developed as recently as last year. They all offer different value for their price. Some sacrifice capability for ease of use, while others sacrifice emphasis on one enterprise need at the expense of another. Whether you want an ERP solution that is cloud-based, hosted, on-premise or one that can be all three, options exist to address your enterprise’s needs. That doesn’t mean the search for the right fit will be easy.

Are you shopping for an ERP solution geared closer to process manufacturing, discrete manufacturing, or a service you provide? It’s better to measure twice and cut once. Don’t’ waste precious resources, like time, money, and labor, on a solution that won’t address your most critical of needs. Contact ERP consultants and vendors, arrange for demos of each solution and meet with your teams to understand what they’ll need out of the final product.

3. Plan For The Future: Going Beyond Go-Live

Your success doesn’t stop once things are up and running. How will your enterprise utilize your new ERP solution of the next 5 or 10 years? Upgrades, turnover, customizations as you enter new markets, and so many more factors await as you move forward.

You need a solution that grows with your business’ trajectory, which makes it even more critical to select a solution that can accommodate that new warehouse overseas or subsidiaries on the horizon. Changing regulations and compliance requirements at local, state, national, and international levels may be something you need to consider.

Going into your selection process with a roadmap of where the organization is going over the next decade will ensure you aren’t painted into an expensive corner. Plan as far as you can to give your partners the clearest picture of your intended journey as possible.

4. Staff Buy-in: On-Boarding Makes The Difference

Let’s put this out there first: nothing ensures a business’ success more than its employees. That said, your staff need to be on board with this transition or it’ll be destined to fail before it starts. It’s natural that change, especially significant change can be fear-inducing. However, with the right approach, your staff can come to embrace the coming change. Address their apprehensions, be prepared to give concrete answers to how the new system will address employee needs and make their jobs both easier and more efficient. Getting your staff to understand why this change is coming is integral in getting them on-board with how you go about implementing.

5. Sideline The Bureaucracy: Streamline Implementation

Bureaucracy is notorious for slowing down even the most efficient processes. EPR consultants and integrators are good at their jobs when they’re allowed to operate. By getting the necessary parties involved from inception, you can avoid blockers to critical processes during implementation. This may depend on how many layers of management your organization had in place, but by clearing the channel to enable the ERP consultants to do their job without impediment, you can avoid bottlenecks and wasting precious resources in the process.

6. Establish Order: Project Roles And Responsibilities

When it comes to both in-house and external resources, making sure everyone has a clear understanding of their role and responsibilities during your ERP implementation process. Your partnered ERP consultant will walk you through the process and give recommendations on how best to delegate the workload during implementation. Ensure that you and your team know what’s going on at every stage to avoid bottlenecks and unintended setbacks.

7. An Opportunity To Redefine Your Business Processes

Your ERP consultants will likely conduct a business process review prior to beginning your ERP implementation. This is a critical time for your business to reevaluate how processes are carried out. While you may be tempted to replicate old ways of doing things on a new ERP platform, the new system enables your teams to make more efficient use of the tools at their disposal. Go back to the beginning and determine whether your organization should change the way they do things from the onset. Keep in mind, many ERP software solutions come built in with the best practices of hundreds if not thousands of businesses in related industries.

8. Emphasize Clean Data

Old SKUs, incomplete, and just plain bad customer data don’t need to follow you into a new era for your business. make an impact with a new start that doesn’t leave room for shoddy work. Ensuring your recording and data practices are clean and clear from the start is the best way to ensure the right approach to record keeping and management is in your future.

9. Don’t Cut Corners On Training

Like onboarding, your team should be in it to win it when it comes to your ERP implementation. That means they need to know the software inside and out when it comes time to use the platform. A quality ERP consultant will get your staff trained in all the right tools needed for their given role. Instill confidence in your team by giving them the best training that money can buy, your business with prosper and your staff buy-in will increase with your investment.

10. Don’t Cut Ties After Go Live

When it comes time to use the new ERP solution on your own, chances are there will be bumps in the road as you move forward. This is where your team’s training is proven and your reevaluated business processes are put to the test. Consider bringing on an ERP consultant that offers managed services and support beyond ERP implementation. Maintaining a solid professional relationship with partners can save your business a lot of unnecessary grief and precious resources in the long run. On the other end of a successful go-live, when your business hits the ground running and has a bright future ahead a good partner can enable your enterprise to take advantage of rapid development and position for expansion.

About Encompass Solutions

Encompass Solutions, Inc. is an ERP consulting firm and Epicor Gold Partner that offers professional services in business consulting, project management, and software implementation. Whether undertaking full-scale implementation, integration, and renovation of existing systems or addressing the emerging challenges in corporate and operational growth, Encompass provides a specialized approach to every client’s needs. As experts in identifying customer requirements and addressing them with the right solutions, we ensure our clients are equipped to match the pace of Industry.