Maybe you’re reading this because you’ve finally decided it’s time to purchase an ERP solution for your business, but you’re not quite sure what to look for. If that’s the case, you’re in the right spot.
Remember: ERP software connects every aspect of your business, including accounting, marketing, sales, HR, CRM and inventory. The ERP solution you choose should make it easier for your employees to collect and organize business data. Therefore, finding the right ERP solution for your business is key to ensuring your teams are managing day-to-day operations efficiently.
Before committing to a single ERP vendor, there are several factors to consider.
Do your homework
First and foremost, there are many ERP solutions available in the market today, so do your homework. Every ERP vendor has its own website, where features, benefits and other resources are listed. Be sure to always examine publicly available content first before contacting vendors about their solutions.
But don’t just review vendor websites. Scroll through available content elsewhere. If you’re a manufacturer, simply, search for this: “ERP solutions for manufacturers.” See what you can dig up. There are plenty of resources available for you to use to compare ERP solutions across the board. Some publications and analyst firms even rank ERP solutions.
Determine your business needs and goals
Determine the problems your business is currently facing. Then, place them on a list. Be sure to include all your pain points. Don’t leave anything out. After prioritizing your business challenges, figure out where your current system is falling short. Assess why the software you’re using isn’t meeting your expectations. For example, maybe it can’t automate certain business processes.
In addition to assessing your needs, consider your company’s goals when shopping for an ERP solution. This part of the process should be a lot easier for you to complete. More than likely, you’ve already established your company’s goals, so use what’s available to you.
Find mobile-friendly ERP software
Don’t forget about your mobile users when reviewing ERP solutions for your business. Think about it this way: Do you want your employees working more or less? By selecting a mobile-friendly ERP software for your organization, you’re welcoming your employees to work more by providing them with around-the-clock access to your systems.
Instead of being tied down to a desk, they’ll be able to access real-time data (which means your employees will always have up-to-date information available to them) wherever they are. If they have devices equipped with your ERP solution’s app, they’ll be able to review reports and conduct key business processes. With a mobile-friendly ERP solution, your employees can make on-the-go decisions, potentially improving operational efficiency within your organization.
One thing you should pay attention to when evaluating mobile functionality is the number of modules available. Some ERP solutions only offer certain modules via mobile devices. Determine the modules your employees need to manage day-to-day operations and go from there.
Can the ERP solution your reviewing integrate with other software?
The entire purpose of using an ERP solution is to be able to exchange data with other software solutions being used by your departments, so take inventory of the software solutions they’re currently using during day-to-day operations.
For example, look at the CRM solution your sales, support, and marketing employees are using. Then, decide whether you’re going to replace it with an ERP’s module or integrate the data from the CRM solution your teams are currently using.
Don’t wait to consider integration after you pick your ERP solution.
Consult with a professional
Choosing the wrong ERP software could significantly impact your business, so if you’re not comfortable with doing the work yourself or time is limited, hiring an IT professional may be your best option. Find an IT professional with a background in deploying ERP software for businesses of all sizes. Then, be sure to ask about the factors previously mentioned.
Finding the right ERP solution for your business doesn’t have to be complicated. Examine the ERP software market, determine your business needs, narrow your options down to mobile-friendly solutions, evaluation integration capabilities, and you’ll be on your way to improving the operational efficiency of your business. Of course, if time is of the essence, it may be best to hire a professional.