ERP purchasing: 5 things to consider

best manufacturing erp software

ERP purchasing: 5 things to consider

Here are five things to consider before going on an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) purchasing journey.

The world’s most popular ERP providers now have variations of their products built specifically for different industries and business models. Each one with hosts of add-on modules, “configurable” to a degree can create a bespoke solution meeting your specific business needs. It is recommended that you request a demo in order to check if it really fits.

It is no secret that software costs money and can be expensive. Accepting this is typically a prerequisite to embarking on an EPR purchasing journey. That is a significant commitment required to procure and implement an ERP solution.

The business can decide to embark on the pursuit entirely on its own. Otherwise, it can choose to consult with experts to guide them through the process, the time, resources. In the latter case, monetary costs can escalate quickly. In either regard though, you get out of it what you put in. Implementing the best ERP for your business and learning how to take full advantage of its capabilities can completely transform your enterprise. More importantly, that can lead to tremendous growth in your business. This up-front cost must be weighed against the substantial time and resource savings the solution will unlock in efficiency gains.

An ERP solution can be a significant investment. Thus, it is important to consider the fact that what your business looks like today might not be what it does tomorrow. The natural path of any successful business is growing. With growth comes expanding business needs, often with an increased degree of complexity.

It’s important to seek out and design an ERP tool that can grow and expand with you while offering a platform to drive innovation. This can be as simple as the ability to add additional users or lines of business. However, it can also be as complex as the ability to handle international operations across multiple business entities using local languages. To get the most out of a new ERP tool, decision-makers should keep in mind the overall trajectory of their business and their vision.

This foresight will help a new ERP become an enabler, integral to the business achieving its ultimate mission and vision.

Transitioning to a new ERP is a tremendous opportunity for a business. It opens up the possibility to transform and modernize the way it operates. For example, you can rethink how to work more efficiently today in the digital world. Keeping that in mind, though, the transition can be detrimental to a business if it attempts to completely erase its previous life. Thus, it is vital to consider the end-user when making the decision to move to a new ERP tool and its implementation.

Technology is all well and good. However, if business owners and employees cannot actually do their job, an ERP transition can cause immense turmoil. More seriously, it has the potential to be the beginning of the end. By considering the needs of the end-user “internal customer” rather than only seeking out the dream-like functionality, you can be sure to select the best course of action for the entire enterprise. At the same time, you can make the transition as seamless as possible.

Keep in mind what a new ERP tool means in its most fundamental sense for your business. Furthermore, change inevitably equals uncertainty. In large part, it is easy for a business owner or executive to make a business case for transitioning to a new ERP. Intentions mean nothing if stakeholders do not buy-in to the project, buy-in to the change, and buy-in works its way from the top down. Without it, a new ERP will never achieve its full potential and can possibly fail entirely.

Before embarking on an ERP purchasing journey, consider what it means for the people that will be most affected. Then, make an effort from the very beginning to get everyone on board. Finally, you get to work together toward the ultimate goal of improving your bottom line. Buy-in equals user adoption which equals more certainty towards achieving a return on investment.

Source: Thomas Burns

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