What to look for when choosing the best ERP solution for your business
For businesses wondering about how effective any ERP solution is, here are four questions they can ask themselves.
Modern systems deliver the core functions of commerce, but the real challenge often lies in adequately supporting the nuances of your own business while integrating with existing processes and legacy systems.
While some options will force businesses into a different way of operating, others are purpose built with the aim of delivering adaptability. The latter is one trait that's especially valuable for Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) solutions. As these solutions form the cornerstone of a company's IT infrastructure and business process, it's essential they're creating value and acting as business enablers, rather than being limiting. Here are some of the important questions that should be asked:
1. How easily will it integrate with current systems?
Traditional ERP suites require businesses to reorder their existing operating practices around their various demands and limitations. While it is possible for a company to adapt to requirements inherent in some software, it is often not the most efficient approach. Many businesses also derive a significant portion of their competitive advantage from how their processes currently work. By choosing an ERP application that is designed with seamless integration in mind, and employing the services of transformation experts, the system can be adapted, and if necessary extended, to best meet your business requirements.
2. Will it evolve and scale according to my business needs?
Today's digital environment is predicated on constant change and evolution, which means any new businesses application should be architected to remain current and relevant over the long term. Without this, the investment won't always provide the same level of value if it is not keeping pace with the changing demands of your business.
3. Who will support my system and how will they do it?
With the complexity inherent in many enterprise technology investments, it's not enough for businesses to simply buy a product from a vendor and have that be the end of the relationship. Over time, your business needs will evolve and change, requiring your core systems to move with you, further, new product functions and performance improvements that you may wish to exploit. It is important that you team with a quality provider to assist you on this journey. With this in mind an easily accessible and flexible business partner who understands both your business processes and technology requirements is essential for a good return on investment.
4. Am I locked into my vendor and their technology?
Purchasing from some vendors locks the business into their technology ecosystem and release cycles. These systems by their nature are also more difficult and costly to customise to existing business processes and are often are served by a high-cost eco-system of providers.
How can Solnet help?
Solnet long ago recognised that the needs of typical kiwi business are not well served by traditional ERP technologies or providers. Solnet has therefore chosen to provide an open source ERP solution, 'Odoo'. The benefits delivered include a vast range of community-created modules and facilities to provide for customisations. It is built so that modular extensions and enhancements can be added without impacting the core building-blocks of the environment, thus allowing it to be tuned to your specific needs while preserving ease of maintenance (and containing total cost of ownership).
If your current ERP solution is failing to answer any of these questions, get in touch with Kevin McMenamin to find out how Odoo can change your business for the better.
Kevin is Solnet’s ERP Capability Manager and leads the team who manage project delivery of enterprise resource management and associated solutions based on Odoo (a leading open source ERP solution). In addition to his subject matter expertise, Kevin has spent almost 20 years in project management. He assists clients with strategy, implementation, and in achieving ongoing success, leveraging their ERP and business management software solutions.