As businesses grow, the need for being agile in business processes has become of importance. This need for being agile has caused many companies to embrace cloud-based business models as their IT infrastructure. This, in turn, has led to the rapid growth of the ERP market. With the ERP market rapidly growing, prospective buyers have more options to select from but with more options making a decision can be a very difficult task.
If you’re in the market for a new ERP software, here are some guidelines and tips to consider that will help you through the process.
1: Assess Your Current Business operations
- If your current business is relying on outdated software, disparate systems and manual processes in order to get things done, it is the right time to start your search in an effort to combat your business inefficiencies.
Start by creating a selection committee: Get upper management, middle management, IT staff and other critical employees involved in the process. Explain to them why you are in the market for a new ERP system and the benefits it will bring to their respective departments.
2: Gather Key Requirements
- Make a clear and extensive list of requirements before you start looking at solutions. Have each department of your business create a list of problems need solving and any new features they think would make their workflow more efficient.
- Create a list of ERP solutions that are suitable for your business. When compiling your list keep in mind the following;
- Consider how well the ERP solutions fit your type of business.
- Ensure the pricing is within your budget.
- Your deployment preferences, whether it’s a cloud-based or on-premise solution.
- If you have any must-have requirements eliminate any solution that doesn’t offer them.
- After you have a list of potential ERP solutions, you should consider the following factors when narrowing down your short list;
- The vendor’s viability - how well they’re performing financially.
- Their strength and weaknesses - consider which of their weaknesses you can live with and which you can’t.
- Is it user-friendly? Ensure it’s easy to grasp to avoid constantly contacting support services for assistance.
- The technical requirements. Have your IT team correspond with the vendor the details, for example, the type of server, data storage, customizations, etc.
- Get references. Most vendors will give you a sugar-coated reference. It’s wise you do some research of your own;
- Find third-party reviews.
- Look up for news articles.
- Reach out to colleagues in your type of industry for their feedbacks.
3: Making the decision
- With all the information gathered, sit with your team and discuss. Compare and contrast each solution and how well or bad they address your requirements.
- Make your decision and move on to the next phase – Implementation Process.
In closing, after considering these factors you should have a clearer idea of how to select an ERP system suitable for your business. Be sure to look for our follow up blog “The successful ERP Implementation”.