How to Choose the Right ERP Software for Business

Written By Alla Levin
September 01, 2023

How to Choose the Right ERP Software for Business

Enterprise resource planning (ERP) software has evolved dramatically since its origins as material resource planning systems manufacturers use. Today, businesses of every stripe and industry rely on ERP to help manage their businesses more efficiently.

ERP can increase efficiency across a wide variety of departments – from finance and accounting, inventory control, and professional service automation, through inventory tracking to service automation – by streamlining core functions while eliminating redundancies or manual tasks and providing one source of data that ensures everyone within an enterprise is working towards one common objective.

Finding an ERP system can be both exciting and arduous for companies. They want an ERP that seamlessly connects core business functions with top-of-the-line software from trusted vendors, offering outstanding support services for users.

Your team should invest the appropriate time and resources into researching, selecting, deploying, and using an ERP system in your company to its maximum benefit. Finding an adequate system may seem challenging when searching online provides endless amounts of software vendors competing to attract your attention – it doesn’t help that an easy search reveals an array of software that could become available immediately upon clicking “find an ERP.”

Step-by-Step Guide on Selecting an ERP System for Your Business

Selecting an ERP Development Company requires careful thought and research; to find one suitable to your business, follow these steps:

Step 1: Define Business RequirementsHow to Choose the Right ERP Software for Business

To get the best ERP selection possible, your business must understand its own requirements and goals accurately. This will significantly influence all decisions related to ERP selection.

When selecting ERP, it can prove especially fruitful in helping optimize productivity and efficiency within your organization. Evaluate current processes; identify areas for improvement and highlight functionalities needed in your operations that would enhance productivity and efficiency within your organization.

Step 2: Develop Your Budget

First and foremost, determine how much of an ERP software development budget you are willing to set aside for implementing best practices – this may take anywhere from several months up to several years, depending on the size, number of locations, and customization required of the business. Consider upfront costs, implementation, customization potentials and ongoing services provided as part of this equation.

Many successful organizations view ERP systems as investments that provide tangible returns through increased efficiency and visibility rather than as simply expenses that must be covered at whatever cost they come at them. Companies that treat ERP like another expense risk choosing an inferior system based on price alone.

Step 3: Evaluate ERP Solutions

Companies looking into ERP systems hope for increased productivity, cost, and time savings across their operations; however, a system that needs to catch up with changing processes may cause its own setbacks instead of providing positive returns on its investment.

Do your research! Review the features, functionalities, and pricing of various ERP software options to identify which fits your industry and business requirements best. While studies can often be completed independently by clients, consulting firms specializing in ERP software might offer hands-on help during purchasing.

Step 4: Choose Your Vendor

Numerous vendors may meet your criteria; when making this selection, consider several factors, such as vendor reputation, past industry experience and technology direction and viability, customer service satisfaction, the support offered and training provided, the total cost of ownership, etc.

Select an experienced partner or reseller with experience implementing ERP systems for businesses within your industry, checking references as necessary to ensure they fit perfectly into your organization.

Step 5: Evaluate Implementation

When considering ERP software solutions, please pay close attention to how their implementation will proceed and what steps must be taken during and post-implementation. Evaluate its timelines and objectives against what your timeline and goals might entail and the support offered throughout. Also, factor in training provided during implementation for employees as needed.

Some ERPs can be more challenging and time-consuming to implement as employees will require extensive training on unfamiliar software. You should carefully assess which ERP will be more accessible for your organization to navigate and any additional benefits that would make a longer implementation worthwhile.

As part of your research process, be sure to inquire into what implementation support your custom software development company offers. Training programs may be designed to facilitate and assist with this phase; take full advantage of such offerings where available.

Step 6: Prepare Your Business for GrowthHow to Choose the Right ERP Software for Business

To prepare your business for future success and ensure its ERP solution can keep pace with changes to meet all current and future business needs, ensure its scalability is flexible enough to change as your needs do – be that deploying in the cloud or on-premises in both instances, your ERP solution should grow with your company allowing for additional functionality as your company requires it.

Modern cloud-based ERP solutions (and some on-premises deployments) make it straightforward to switch modules on and off, add or remove user licenses, and add/delete hardware resources/bandwidth/transaction volumes as required.

Consider those ERP solutions that will accommodate your business plans, such as eCommerce, multiple warehouses, distribution, manufacturing, or payroll needs. Take advantage of the limitations of your ERP solution!

Step 7: Tour Your System

To understand an ERP system that fits your exact requirements and specific needs, request a solution discovery session to gain a feel for its features and functions. Ensure the software company can meet both time frame and budget requirements and streamline any manual processes that might arise in their development process.

No matter how easy an ERP system may be to implement and use, any change requires significant changes to how your company runs – meaning there may be bumps during implementation and staff feedback about its functionality. Your goal should be to select a solution that minimizes these impacts for all employees using it daily.

Step 8: Hiring the Appropriate Team of Software and Experts

You must hire the appropriate team of software and experts to set your organization up for success as it moves onto a new platform and accommodates complex business requirements. They can walk with you every step of the journey!

At times, navigating all aspects of purchasing, licensing, implementation, and customization on their own can be overwhelming – demonstrations to purchasing to performance to customization to services – many businesses rely on multiple teams that assist only partial processes. Discover why working with software partners could benefit your organization in various aspects.

Step 9: Implementation, Training & CustomizationHow to Choose the Right ERP Software for Business

The implementation strategy typically encompasses planning and preparation, configuration, migration, testing & training at your go-live date. Project manager support when running; once up and running, ensure the project manager can guide users through the system, train employees & provide ongoing business support based on the company’s size.

Step 10: Ongoing Support in the Future

Your business will require ongoing support in the form of software upgrades and integration with potential new hardware or software systems in the future. When selecting an ERP provider, ask about promotions and support services as you assess each to ensure it will continue serving you effectively over time.

Consider that, should your company prove itself profitable, its growth could accelerate rapidly – potentially within months! Your ERP system must accommodate this expansion with comprehensive support that keeps pace. As part of your due diligence efforts, find software that can grow alongside you while supporting expansion plans.

How to choose the right ERP software for business: Conclusion

At its core, an ERP system is an integrated suite of applications for managing finances and accounting, sales and customer service, order processing, inventory control and warehouse operations, manufacturing, service delivery, and many other essential business functions. While implementations tend to focus on finance and accounting first, rollouts of ERP may focus on any functional area that presents unique business challenges – not necessarily financial ones!

Selecting an Enterprise Resource Planning system (ERP) solution for your organization is vital to taking it to the next level. Doing this successfully requires taking an in-depth analysis of operations, data, and business processes within their operations environment and considering all available ERP capabilities that support current as well as potential future needs – an ERP must not only support day-to-day business activities but scale with your company as it grows!

Failure of ERP implementation projects often stems from insufficient or improper selection processes for ERP vendors, so be patient during this phase and follow all the above steps when choosing an ERP vendor. Spending some time doing your homework and clearly outlining expectations and goals will go a long way to helping generate greater returns, and spending this much effort making this choice will save time, energy, and potential headaches during implementation.

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