Frequently Asked Question
What should we look for in choosing an ERP system?

ERP, enterprise resource planning, systems are the backbone of your organization.   Enterprise systems connect every department and business process, so picking the right system can greatly increase productivity and be a behind the scenes competitive advantage to companies in any industry.  A company’s long term strategic plan will be the backbone behind selecting the appropriate system.  Knowing the key criteria for selecting an enterprise system will be a good starting point for your evaluation process.

Look for agility and flexibility to adapt to current and future market leads.  Businesses and technologies are changing all the time.  Technological innovations enter the marketplace at accelerating rates and customer expectations are continually increasing.  An enterprise system needs to be adaptable to both of these factors.

Make sure that ERP software features add value and are not merely pretty bells and whistles.  The critical processes of your business and future business need to be addressed first when looking at the robust features of enterprise solutions.  These critical features must also be able to be integrated company wide, to every department, not just to a few of critical departments.  As an enterprise system grows, and helps your company grow, it important to make sure that it will be able to synch with all departments down the road because it is inevitable that they will be if not already.

Look for an ERP vendor that has long history and experience with system replacements as this will be critical to your organization if you currently have an ERP system that is in need of being replaced.  If you  don’t have an ERP system on board, this criteria still holds true as you will inevitable need to replace, upgrade or enhance your enterprise system down the road.

Lock in on the implementation time and get a detailed implementation scope of work and deliverables before selecting your ERP system.  You have heard the horror stories, or may have even been involved first had with enterprise resource planning projects and implementations that never got implemented.  Most large scale implementation projects take six months if all goes well.  Others can take years and never get fully implemented.

Make sure your system will fit your business.  What many companies found out in the old “big” enterprise systems is that they were originally developed for a particular industry or vertical.  Trying to customize these rigid systems to fit other industries was like forcing a square peg in a round hole.  Enterprise solutions today are much more customizable than a decade ago, but some are more adaptable and easily integrated to your business than others.  Find out who they are and make sure that they are the right ERP solution for you.  SYSPRO and the other large players are creating modular solutions, and the other open source, SaaS, software as a service, products are underscoring this positive development.  The lower capital outlay for these modular and SaaS solutions are also making it easier for companies to test drive solutions and achieve a shorter term ROI on their investment.
 

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