3 Ways Distributors Solve Inventory Challenges with D365 Business Central vs. QuickBooks

As a distributor, you’re likely feeling the pressure to digitally transform. Whether it be changing the way you sell through digital marketplaces like Amazon, Walmart and others or exploring cloud-based solutions to keep your multiple warehouses connected, transformation is calling. And any transformation extends to your accounting department doing their best with QuickBooks. As you grow your business, manage more inventory, and generate more data, QuickBooks struggles to keep up. That’s why many distributors are making the move to Dynamics 365 Business Central – specifically to solve their inventory tracking challenges. 

QuickBooks has gotten you this far, but Business Central can take you to that next level. Read on to discover more about how migrating from QuickBooks to Business Central can specifically help you realign your inventory processes, eliminate data silos, and better track inventory across all your locations—in real-time. 


1. Generate Accurate, Real-Time Inventory Data 

Distributors are constantly generating massive amounts of data about their inventory –current on hand quantities, demand from sales, expected receipts from vendors and expected/unexpected costs.  Each data point is a significant cost in the operational wheel. Even though QuickBooks may look like it can handle your inventory management – and the data it produces – it falls short trying to sustain your growth, and so will Excel spreadsheets.  


A couple of reasons why QuickBooks inventory management doesn’t work for most distributors:  

  • QuickBooks and Excel do not communicate with other systems in your business, so data must be manually entered into the system or transferred through manual means. This lack of communication can cause delays and inaccurate inventory data. 

  • There is little-to-zero automation in either method of data entry. Relying on humans to enter all data and manage that data results in duplication, errors, and potential compliance risks that can set your business up for severe headaches at audit time. Not to mention the lost productivity when staff must spend hours manually entering and tracking data. 

With Dynamics 365 Business Central, all your data is centralized available to be shared across departments and locations, easily and automatically. Your inventory data is consolidated in a single solution with no effort on your part – eliminating manual exports and imports while ensuring data accuracy and integrity. 

More accurate data means more accurate analytics, so you can see truer pictures of your inventory and costs. 


2. Track Inventory Value and Levels Across Multiple Warehouse Locations 

As your distribution company grows, you might expand into digital marketplaces or open new warehouse locations – if your system isn’t managing real time inventory in one or multiple locations there is a huge potential for losing track of inventory resulting in lost sales and revenue. QuickBooks is not equipped to keep track of serialized or lot-controlled inventory, nor is it capable of communicating among your different warehouses or entities. 

Dynamics 365 Business Central includes powerful inventory management capabilities and a built-in warehouse management system (WMS) with advanced levels of communication, system integration, and automation for real-time inventory tracking and management across locations. Because data seamlessly flows through the system, transactions automatically increase and decrease inventory records. You can easily track transfers of inventory across warehouses, see all orders at a glance, route orders to the correct facilities, and monitor inventory counts at every location. If you import goods overseas by container, 365ContainerImport is an integrated tool that enables you to track, manage, and allocate inventory within Business Central.  


3. Make Smarter Business Decisions with Confidence  

Migration from Quickbooks to a fully integrated ERP solution like Dynamics 365 Business Central is about more than just improving the way you manage inventory or accounting processes. It’s about connecting and streamlining multiple processes in your business to give you better visibility into your operations – ultimately enabling your people to make smarter business decisions.  

The disparate systems and silos you experience using QuickBooks don’t support business intelligence and can’t deliver the strategic insights you need. Business Central addresses this problem with a native integration with Power BI – a robust business analytics and data visualization solution that helps you bridge the business intelligence gap between data and decision-making.  

If you want to see sales data compared to operational data, or if you want to track your project costs based on resources, for example, there is no easy way to do that in QuickBooks. That's where Power BI enters into the Dynamics 365 Business Central overall solution giving you better visibility across your entire business. You can connect any data source including financial, inventory, and operational data from Business Central, sales and marketing data from your customer relationship management (CRM) solution, as well as Microsoft Office applications like Outlook and Excel.  

When you have that kind of visibility into not just your inventory but throughout your whole business, you can make real-time decisions about purchasing that keep your inventory availability high and costs low.  


Learn More About Dynamics 365 Business Central for Distributors 

With inventory such a crucial component of your distribution business, it’s worth the investment in a solution that doesn’t limit you the way QuickBooks does. The experts at Western Computer have years of experience helping distributors like you make the move to Dynamics 365 Business Central improving inventory, warehousing, visibility, and efficiency. Download our interactive self-evaluation checklist to determine if you are ready to transition from QuickBooks or send us a message today to speak with an expert.  

About the Author

Telka Clem

With an Information Systems degree, Telka Clem was trained as a developer, database administrator, and business system analyst. This education and related experience in finance—while also serving as the Controller for a multi-entity corporation—has resulted in her ability to relate application requirements to both users and developers alike. Telka’s extensive knowledge is 34 years in the making, with the past 18 years devoted to the roles of Finance Lead and Solutions Architect on most of her 150+ projects. Telka is certified as a Dynamics 365 Business Central Functional Consultant and was recently promoted to the role of Dynamics 365 Pre-sales Solutions Architect for Western Computer.

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