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ERP Software Solutions for Exploration Mining

Starting up an exploration venture requires careful planning of capital, with keeping costs to a minimum one of the highest priorities for a company. One aspect of keeping costs low can include the business systems designed to help control expenditure. It is often a chicken and egg situation and can be very challenging, considering the many reporting requirements an exploration company needs to produce for stakeholders and the market, yet the system they need to do that is often too expensive.

When companies start looking into ERP solutions that report on areas such as active tenements, expenditure, payroll and others, they often find the majority of their options are cost prohibitive that still cannot provide all of the needed functionality.

To avoid the initial cost of an ERP solution exploration companies have, and some still do, rely on a combination of spreadsheets and a lower cost system to manage their exploration activities. However having separate tools to report different requirements allows room for error and creates extra hours of admin work, particularly when the time comes to submit reporting requirements.

One way to overcome the upfront cost of implementing an ERP solution is to lease the software as a monthly service, rather than buying the software outright.  We provide different licensing agreements for our ERP solution, allowing you have a solution that easily integrates with other software to extend functionality, allowing you to reduce costs while having a powerful, well-rounded software that suits your needs.

There are a few key areas that exploration companies need to consider when building a suitable solution that will give you the appropriate “bang for your buck”:

Tenements Management

One of the most important tasks an exploration company must do is to report on their tenements. There is a significant amount of legislation in Australia around the necessary land permits and permissions needed by exploration ventures to conduct exploration activities. In order to maintain ownership of these leases, or tenements, companies need to provide frequent reports to regulatory authorities as part of Form 5 compliance. Challenges can be faced if mandatory reporting dates are missed or expenditures incorrectly assigned across your tenements (see Financial Management considerations below).

Consider the following when looking at a system for managing your tenements; anniversary date based reporting, Automated Form 5 generation and integration with your general ledger for spend tracking.

Financial Management

There are two core aspects to consider on the financial side. Firstly, the expenditure associated with your tenements may not be linked to your general ledger, creating extra processes. Without a solution, you may also have difficulty in assigning costs (either by percentage or one-by-one) to your tenement portfolio.

The second aspect is your more standard financial concerns such as payroll, cash flow and joint venture reporting. Many of these are usually bundled up within a larger enterprise system, but this can be fairly cost prohibitive for more junior explorers.

Ability to grow

The only thing worse than investing time and money in an ERP system is realising that you are quickly outgrowing it. Some exploration companies fail to account for the growth of their mine and their needs as they go through the stages of their mines life, quickly jumping onboard a cheap solution rather than one that will grow with them. This is often a forgotten aspect when choosing a system, and is seen as a “we’ll cross that bridge when we get there” issue. To counteract this, an exploration company can act more strategically by investing in a scalable system that’s able to grow as you need it to.

What exploration package is right for me?

Choosing a solution that will fit all of your requirements is ultimately the best choice for your company.

We’ve worked with many exploration companies, developing lower cost, scalable solutions to meet their needs at this early stage of their operation. We understand the unique challenges and reporting requirements that exploration companies need to adhere to, and have created an ERP solution package that meets all the core needs of an exploration venture and is available on a monthly lease.

Speak to us today to discuss the perfect solution for your exploration company!

Picture of Sonia Turner
Sonia Turner

Sonia is the Sales and Marketing Manager at Scope Systems. With a strong background of software in the mining sector she is passionate about making customers lives easier through innovative solutions. You can connect with her on LinkedIn. 

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