Is There a Perfect Management System for a Distributor?
Question: What is the perfect system for a promotional products distributor?
Answer: I wish I had the perfect answer for that. Unfortunately, there is not a perfect system for our complex and unique industry regardless of cost.
Ad specialty distributors have had to figure out their own systems, mostly by trial and error. And though similar in many ways, each one is unique with its own processes and procedures.
When looking at a new system, create a list of your “must haves,” and make sure each system you consider has those. If possible, have that feature demonstrated to you to make sure you are talking about the same thing. Too often, the answer you get when asking about a software is “sure, it does that.” I would also suggest looking at systems in various price points—starting with the most cost effective. You might be surprised at the power available for less money or the overkill with the more expensive systems.
Please email accounting questions you would like considered for the column to HGatter@AccountingSupportLLC.com with the subject line of "Ask the Accountant."
Harriet Gatter, owner of Accounting Support LLC, was an ad specialty distributor for 23 years and an adjunct professor of accounting at Neumann University. She sold her ad specialty business in 2012, became certified as a QuickBooks ProAdvisor, and now works exclusively with ad specialty distributors nationwide on their QuickBooks, order management and accounting needs.