You may have noticed that we got a little out of sorts in our series on 7-steps to overcoming the new ERP business challenge. So far, we’ve taken you through assessing the benefits of each ERP you’re considering; weighing the cost of a new system; understanding what it means to own the ERP system; reducing implementation risk and understanding the implementation approach; and finally, measuring the ROI your company has received.
So what’s the one part that we missed?
Actually choosing the new ERP software provider!
Spending money, especially the large sum a new ERP would cost, is always difficult to justify – especially in these current economic times. But, let’s take a look at what information you should have in front of you to help make your decision easier.
Once you’ve convinced everyone that needs convincing that your legacy system or homegrown solution isn’t doing its job to the best of its ability anymore, you’ve brought in some software providers to try to convince YOU that they’re the best.
But, what makes them the best for your business?
Aside from making sure an ERP fits into your budget and can play nice by integrating relatively seamlessly with your other necessities there are a couple of important pieces to look at when you make your recommendation on what to purchase:
Does the product have room for expansion?
Sure, that ERP that is the cheapest and does the baseline of what you’re looking for looks attractive, but will it be the solution that will fit your growing company in a year? Two years? Five? The product you recommend needs to be easily implemented in much of the organization if a department so chooses. It also needs to easily accommodate new users if necessary.
Will they train you? What’s their support like?
Once the ERP is implemented in your company will the provider disappear? Do you know how to use their product? Can you get them on the phone easily if you have questions? A company that has a great support system is a great company to purchase a product from. Even if you don’t use them often, knowing that you can have a knowledgeable person on the phone or at the other end of an email helping you whenever you need it should be crucial to your decision.
So, now you’ve chosen your new ERP. Make the recommendation to the higher ups. If you followed our seven step process you can feel comfortable owning your decision because you’ve explored all your options and weighed all your choices.