There’s an obvious difference between doing something and doing something well. We’re talking about the business of spreadsheets – the lifeblood and foundational management system on which a majority of breweries are built (we’ll save the Quickbooks portion for another blog).

You can do a lot with spreadsheets, and some of them are complex, intertwined systems of linked cells and tabs that keep your brewery intact with all the information you need. It works, and it’ll keep working for the meantime, or until the Excel mastermind and architect who built it moves on, you accidentally delete a row or formula that screws the whole thing up, or the most likely scenario: you simply outgrow its capabilities. The inevitable limitations of spreadsheets are no secret.

The infrastructure of your brewery’s back office backbone can only accommodate so much before you can either:

1. Stay within the confines & limitations of your current systems
2. Start over and rebuild better spreadsheets
3. Look for a solution that will scale with your growth

Believe it or not, most breweries will stick with option #1 because for these 3 reasons:

the_value_of_brewery_management_software1. They don’t see the value of investing in brewery software system
2. They assume brewery software systems aren’t affordable
3. Endeavors to save money overshadow the need for an investment in a long-term solution (Read “Why Cheap is Often More Expensive)

Successful business owners will all tell you the same thing when it comes to making wise investments that will help your brewery be profitable and successful:

“For those business-minded, growth oriented, high impact breweries – you can’t do it with Excel spreadsheets.” – Sean Wilson, Founder, Fullsteam

“If your business is growing, there’s going to come a time when you’re going to need a more powerful solution other than off-the-shelf accounting software and a bunch of spreadsheets.” –Hugh Sisson, Founder, Heavy Seas

If you don’t plan on growing or distributing then you probably don’t need any software other than what you already use. Business minded, growth-oriented breweries come to us looking for a solution to replace their outgrown system of spreadsheets and book keeping software. They see the writing on the wall and realized that entry-level systems won’t accommodate long-term growth. It’s not just for large breweries though – we have plenty of small startup breweries that utilize our OnDemand cloud version of OBeer. Brewery software is a vital to any brewery looking to accurately track costs.

Fullsteam Founder, Sean Wilson, realized they needed a more robust system in place if they wanted to keep growing:

“We are a growth-oriented brewery, we want to be significant – and that’s where OrchestratedBEER comes in. I know we have to do that in a way that tracks our costs, helps us schedule and plan and not frustrate customers in this strong demand scenario that we have. It helps us manage cash wisely because it is such a capital intensive business.”

If you’re a growing brewery and you find yourself outgrowing spreadsheets and Quickbooks, you owe it to yourself to find out what brewery-specific ERP systems are available, and how it can help you. We are in this industry because we know breweries need the support of a robust, scalable solution in order to maintain a profitable business.

OrchestratedBEER is the only brewery-specific ERP solution that was designed specifically for craft breweries. It’s not a generic ERP solution that needs bolt-ons and months of additional customization to get it to do what you want  (aside from our initial enterprise customer). If you do some research, you’ll find vast differences between OrchestratedBEER and other software currently available.

“We wanted to get to a single application solution. If you’re going to make the transition and you’re in this industry, I happen to think that this is the best solution.” – Hugh Sisson, Founder, Heavy Seas

“We really liked the fact that it was designed for craft breweries. We got a really good feeling from the people behind it and our interactions with you, we felt like your interest in a solution for the craft beer industry was genuine. I saw a demo at the Craft Brewer’s Conference and was really impressed – I really didn’t see any other viable options.”
-Sean Lilly Wilson, Founder, Fullsteam