Exact's Blockchain Experimentation to Offer More Scalable Service Possibilities

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Blockchain reinventing ERP software to boost transparency and efficiency in work processes.

Around the world, ERP users know that Exact aims to make its users’ work easier and more efficient throughout their operations. After participating in the world’s largest Blockchain Hackathon in Groningen, Netherlands, Exact is preparing to also be known for its innovations with blockchain for ERP.

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By definition, blockchain is about partnerships and trust. However, it has to gain that trust first by slowly introducing it to people and showing them its advantages. That way, the trust our customers have in Exact will slowly rub in on the blockchain.
— Erich Schnoeckel, Exact’s blockchain expert

 

What Is Blockchain?

Blockchain is a growing list of records, called blocks, which are linked using cryptography. Invented in 2008 by Satoshi Nakamoto to serve as the public transaction ledger of the cryptocurrency bitcoin, blockchain can be integrated into multiple areas beyond financial services, including ERP solutions.

The recent blockchain revolution has been taking the world of Fintech by storm. Bitcoin, decentralized protocols and smart contracts are unlocking opportunities for banks, accountants and auditing firms to build a new level of trust. Yet manufacturers, food processors, distributors and wholesalers are not being left behind. Blockchain's electronic transaction ledger allows companies to provide more accountability to their processes and supply chain traceability when combined with ERP software.
 

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Blockchain for ERP

When blockchain is added into the ERP mix, this technology further decentralizes the network system, so all authorized users can view transaction information to better track invoices, payments and the supply chain movement of products.

This transparency can allow companies to overcome obstacles and build customer confidence. Food industries, retailers and distributors are already harnessing the benefits of blockchain in their ERP endeavors. 

Walmart currently uses blockchain in their ERP system when sourcing fresh food products. The retail giant can see from the electronic ledger where the food product was manufactured, what company packed it, and which distributors handled the shipment before ever reaching Walmart's warehouses.

Jewelry company De Beers has taken advantage of the benefits of blockchain to offer customers more transparency regarding the types of diamonds they purchase. Diamonds offered by the company are able to be tracked to their sources, so customers know they are getting authentic stones and not “blood diamonds” that are used to fund militias and rebel troops in other countries.

 

 

Innovation in ERP: Exact's Triple Entry Blockchain Solution

Can the future of ERP lie with blockchain? Exact believes such an integration can exist. Combining ERP's efficiency in work processes with blockchain's system decentralization and transparency benefits could be a boon in simplifying procedures throughout a company. Yet before diving headfirst into such possibilities, Exact needed to determine how blockchain was currently being leveraged by stakeholders in financial industries.

Exact conducted a focus group with different stakeholders involved in invoice factoring and inventory finance to better understand the following:

  • Discover the possible potential (and obstacles) of blockchain in the financing process.
  • Assess the technology appetite of various stakeholders.
  •  Validate any remaining assumptions made regarding decentralization in financing at this point.

They asked the interviewee to describe their experience with the current financing process at their organization and their point of view on Blockchain technology. After an interpretation of the results, the development of a triple-entry accounting blockchain solution at Exact has started. The team is working with banks, tax authorities, accounting firms and others in the finance chain.

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Merging Technologies for a Better ERP System

Blockchain technology has a great potential for making business processes smarter, establishing trust, and reducing costs and risks. Exact is committed to this new innovation and is investing in this technology because they believe that it can make the lives of SMBs better worldwide. 

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