Buying an ERP Management System

Considerations Before Buying an ERP System

When a company buyer doesn’t have an extensive background enterprise technology, it’s quite common to buy pre-packaged or off-the-shelf enterprise resource planning or ERP systems. However, this is a bit like trying to fit a big square through a circle. While it may address some of the needs of the business, there will be plenty of features the company simply can’t use. It’s an inefficient approach to ERP purchasing.

Taking the Big Step

The thinking with the pre-packaged approach is that all the tools are bundled into the new package and the company just need to convert its data and personnel training over to the new system requirements. A number of approaches will use common platforms such as Oracle, Peoplesoft or SAP. However, if a company management is willing to take the time to learn and understand what can be possible with a custom system, significant benefits can be gained doing so. A customized system does have specific demands that will need to be in place to make it work. For instance, there needs to be a committed level of human support. This is either with internal IT staff or hired help. Many ERP providers will also offer ongoing help support to establish maintenance contracts.

Culture and Process Change

Next, a business needs to be willing to change how it functions to make an ERP system work. The ERP approach may require changes to business processes, new tasks associated with data capture, and learning to understand reports from the system and what they mean. It could also do away with existing programs the company has relied on for a quite a while. This too can result in culture changes and reorganization as old tasks may be eliminated and replaced with new business requirements.

erp management system

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Plan Ahead

Additionally, a company needs to anticipate what it may require from an ERP system in the future. If the company will be significantly changing how it does business in the future, committing to a brand new ERP system right now may be problematic. The future change could require yet another system overhaul soon after the first ERP platform is installed, causing yet more costs.

Conclusion

If all the above has a positive response, then a customized EPR solution may be the best approach to commit to. While the expense will usually be higher than a pre-packaged approach, the results and performance for the company’s needs will be far better.
As a result, when considering purchasing an ERP system, a company needs to look at the potential asset as a capital purchase rather than just a jumble of IT equipment and software. The ERP platform will be a critical core component of how the business works for a long time. So analyzing the purchase from this perspective will provide the best insight for a purchase decision.

Looking for an ERP software solution? Horizon Business Systems will tailor a system to work with your existing business processes. Talk to them today!

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