Legacy, detached and out-dated solutions used by Australian wholesale distributors create a barrier to innovation and growth. These types of software increase IT costs and reduce business efficiency. A fully integrated Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software offers a complete solution to support wholesalers and distributors to lead, pioneer and differentiate in a newly disrupted industry.

The Wholesale and Distribution market is shrinking.

Inside FMCG magazine in the article: “What is driving wholesale bypass?” talks about the new challenge for wholesalers: e-commerce is reshaping the entire economy rapidly. We are seeing an end to wholesale as it is now. Wholesalers and distributors, who act as “middleman” between manufacturers and retailers, have suffered a weighty decline in revenue. Every day more businesses abandon distributors to use direct e-commerce solutions.

In 2017-18, Australia grocery wholesale revenue is likely to contract 0.6 per cent. Footwear wholesaling profitability has dropped over the past five years and is expected to reduce by a further 3.2 per cent. Online clothing stores weakened the demand in traditional channels, reducing retailer’s need for wholesalers. Their revenue is expected to fall by 1.0 per cent. Toy and sporting goods wholesalers shared the same difficult conditions and expect a 1.4 per cent decline in revenue.

What are leaders in the wholesale and distribution industry doing?

Kara Kennedy, in a blog for G2Crowd titled: “The State of B2B Australia Tech in 2017” wrote that Australia ranks No. 5 on the GEDI’s “Global Entrepreneurship Index.” She explains this high ranking shows that Australian display entrepreneurial attitudes towards technology adoption. This culture is supported by the Australian government’s digital agenda which encourages non-tech companies to pioneer and embrace evolving technologies. There is a big focus on digital innovation. The government aggressively pushes initiatives to include pathways for doing business with modernising technology.

Traditional wholesale distributors, who might be struggling in the Australian market, are called to invest in business management technologies. Pioneers are experiencing much more success in this tight market. In MDM’s survey: “The Outlook for Wholesale Distribution in 2017”, 52.4% of Australian wholesale distribution companies surveyed stated that they were already in the process of upgrading their systems. A further 20.3% was updating by the end of the year 2018.


Currently Upgrading Their Systems


Will be upgrading by the end of 2018

52% of wholesale distribution businesses are migrating to fully integrated and centralised ERP software solutions. Wholesale distributors in Australia search for specialised software vendors to develop cloud-based software, rather than several disjointed systems.

ERP systems broadly let them manage everything from financials and accounting to warehouse management, supply chain, inventory and demand planning to sales and marketing. Having all their business processes in one place, accessible everywhere in real time allows them to focus on their differentiation strategies and planning.

“There is a real need for wholesale distributors to invest in pioneering management systems. Businesses must address this as a priority. The future is becoming ever more digital. If you aren’t on board, you’ll be left behind. Having a digital platform is not a differentiator anymore, it is the standard. Efficiency and centralisation in a good ERP system, are now the keys to get that customer service differentiator.” says Michael Dean, Business Consultant at Klugo.

Richard Kloé, Managing Director at Headland Machinery, explains: “using NetSuite cloud technology gave us a competitive edge to lead in an incredibly tough market. Wholesale distributors must adapt to the fast and disrupting changes in the industry. Only state-of-the-art wholesale distribution software will give them freedom and ease across multiple channels. Technology like this can make a difference to drive success in a global economy.”

Benefits of Cloud-Based ERP Software Solutions

Carrying out manual sales processes, financial management and administrative tasks can take hours. With a cloud-based system, time-consuming tasks such as submitting sales orders from the field to the back office can be automated and finished in under an hour. Making these processes faster allows employees and managers to have more time to focus on the real business differentiator: customer relationships and building a strong customer experience. According to Accenture’s “Digital Disconnect in Customer Engagement” survey: 81% Australian consumers admit that it is ‘frustrating’ or ‘extremely frustrating’ dealing with a company that does not make it easy to do business with them. 55% have switched providers due to poor customer service.

Cloud-based business platforms are changing the future of Australian businesses. We operate in a global economy – we can sell to anyone anywhere. We need to make the most of our smart inventory management software to help us lead the way in our region.” says Annaliese Kloé, CEO of Klugo and Managing Director of Headland Machinery.

Oracle NetSuite, in 2018, introduced to Australia their latest edition called: “SuiteSuccess” for wholesale distributors. This, out of the box software, puts together the leading practices of thousands of wholesale distributors around the globe. This knowledge base allows a fast implementation, saving time and money for distributors. The billable time spent explaining how to run their business, their accounting and inventory strategies disappears. It is quickly becoming the most affordable wholesale IT solution.

B2B customers act like consumers today: they prefer self-service tools with instant access to product information through their mobile devices. Business Procurement Managers are focussing on developing easy to use e-commerce websites. These managers search for fast or free shipping and immediate product availability. NetSuite is the Wholesale ERP that helps the leading Australian wholesalers to plan a perfect B2B omni-channel commerce customer journey. The platform helps to automate and deliver a consistent shopping experience with purchase orders that ship within a day or two. Businesses can provide sales that are accurate, complete, damage-free, easily returned, and competitively priced.

Running a successful small and medium-sized wholesale distribution business in Australia requires keeping pace with changes in technology, economy, workforce demographics, customer needs, pricing models, and more. These challenges often put distributors at a disadvantage to national or international operations. NetSuite’s SuiteSuccess fast implementation allows Australian business to maximise their investment. With NetSuite, they can see a quick return. With this technology wholesalers are leading within their industry quicker than ever before.

Need a specialist’s free advice?

Feel free to call an expert in Wholesale Enterprise Resource Planning System today. Find out how cloud-based technology can grow your wholesale and distribution business.

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