What is ERP?
Background to ERP
ERP software also known as ‘Enterprise Resource Planning’ software was developed so that organisations could improve and become more efficient, where this system is built to allow you to manage day-to-day operations and activities effectively.
So if we think about day to day operations for most businesses this is the likes of your project management, HR, accounting, procurement and risk management. So put simple, this system will allow you to have all these resources in a centralised area.
This ability to share data across each area allows businesses to save a lot of time on basic areas of the business, allowing them to focus on the future of the business and how to grow.
Why is having an ERP system important
What you are hoping to achieve from introducing this system is that it can manage all elements of your business in a centralised area, allowing you to make more effective use of your time. This is a highly important aspect of a business in terms of scalability and growth, as you will not want to waste time on the general operations of the company where there is software which can do this for you.
However in most cases with the flexibility of businesses today and how they will also have unique needs which a software system just cannot meet. For example, if you are looking to manage relationships with customers more effectively then a CRM system is going to be a better system for you to do this. Alternatively, businesses with highly specific and unique requirements may find that custom ERP software is the ideal solution to meet their distinct operational needs.
It is therefore also important you carry this out as a digital transformation initiative, recognising your needs and implementing them correctly.
Benefits to ERP systems
There are many benefits with conducting a digital transformation when it comes to efficiency and productivity improvements. Below lists some of the outcomes you could achieve if you successfully implement an ERP system.
- Lower operational costs
- Improved business insights with easy access to reports
- Enhanced collaboration with your employees
- Reduced risk through improved data transparency and financial controls
- Improved efficiency across many business functions
- Examples of ERP software
Examples of ERP systems
There are many ERP systems on the market today which can help businesses, but some of the most common ones have been listed below;
- Oracle: This type of ERP software system can be deemed to be the most popular one today, used by many well-known companies. Oracle itself has been improved and developed over the last decade and is now a cloud based SaaS (Software as a Service) suite managing all aspect of your business effectively.
- Microsoft: Microsoft Dynamics ERP system which is run by the largest software company in the world has millions of users worldwide. However, this system differs from others where it provides a combination of customer relationship management (CRM) and ERP resources and capabilities.
- SAP: Developed by the company SAP, this ERP software system is also developed with the objective of integrating the main functionality of a company’s core business processes in a unified system.
When should you implement an ERP system?
There is effectively no correct time to implement an ERP system however in most cases it is normally the point in time where you find yourself spending more time managing the internal aspect of the business and spending less time on focusing on where the business is going.
Therefore, if you are a business start-up and you are confident you can manage your resources and time effectively then the implementation of this system may not be necessary however as the business grows within time you may want to consider having a system which allows you to manage the core processes of your business in one area.
If you want some guidance and support around implementing an ERP system, check out the following video on the steps you should follow.
Risk associated with ERP
If you have completed any research in relation to technology implementation and digital transformation you will find that in many cases the implementation of this system actually commonly leads to failure. We have created a video on ‘how to avoid failure in digital transformation’ and we would encourage you to check it if you plan on introducing a new system. This video will show you how if you are unable to effectively deal with change management and resistance to change then you are going to find it difficult to get the most out of your ERP system.
Check out the following video on some tips to avoiding failure in digital transformation.
How to implement a ERP system successfully
The following 5 steps will ensure you implement an ERP successful within your own business environment;
- Identify your needs: You need to understand why you need this software, how is this system going to satisfy your employees, and what problems it is going to resolve essentially?
- Do your research: Software systems will differ and be able to offer alternative things, so it is therefore important you find the one which is best suited for your business goals and objectives.
- Test the systems: Once shortlisted, you can then test each of the platforms within your business, encouraging the involvement of your team members and getting them to score each ERP system based on how they feel it performed.
- Measure and evaluate your results: Within this step you will want to evaluate and analyse the benefits of what selected ERP system is going to offer your business. Reflecting on your initial goals and identifying whether they have been achieved will be essential.
- Organisational change management: A big factor when it comes to digital transformation success is organisational change management. A key area you want to consider within this step is how you manage any forms of resistance to change, where effective communication, involvement, collaboration and training and support will have major implications on your success.
Within this blog article we took a look at a ERP system and how this technology software could be applied to your company For more content like this, check out our blog content on ProfileTree’s website or head over to ProfileTree’s Youtube for some video content as well.