Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) is a type of software system that helps businesses manage, organize, and streamline their essential day-to-day activities. An ERP collects and integrates important data in one place so different departments can access it to make effective decisions. It allows different departments to have increased collaborations and effective communications.
It can help connect departments like sales, supply chain, accounting, finance, reporting, and inventory management. Each department relies on the other for important information. They most likely need crucial information quickly. With an ERP system, this valuable information is only a few clicks away. An ERP system helps each department focus on its job to increase productivity, provides an opportunity to scale, increases efficiency, and reduces labor costs for your business.
How to choose the best ERP for your business?
There are many ERPs on the market today with varying features. You must pick the best ERP that fits your needs perfectly to get the best results. Here’s how you can choose the best ERP for your business:
1. Evaluate your business
Before you begin your search for an ERP, it is important to evaluate your business to get a clear idea of the perfect fit. You should clearly define your business goals, pain points, strengths, the key stages of the workflow, and the improvements required. Once you know your business, you can communicate these things to an ERP provider to see what they can offer.
2. Define ERP requirements
The next step would be to define what you’re trying to get out of your ERP. Some ERPs cater to a specific organization while others are generalists. You need to decide if you’re looking for a general or a tailored ERP that fits your needs perfectly.
Assuming you’re running an e-commerce store, you’d want an ERP that tracks inventory management, sales, and marketplaces. If you’re running an accounting firm, an ERP that tracks your expenses, taxes, and earnings would be ideal.
Other than specialty, consider the following for your ERP requirements:
– What are your business plans and goals?
– Why are you getting an ERP?
– Is this ERP in your budget?
– Is this ERP scalable to handle your growing business?
– How customizable is the ERP?
– Is the ERP user-friendly?
– Has this ERP been equipped with modern software (like real-time inventory management) for your scalability?
– What does a successful implementation accomplish?
3. Know the ERP vendor
There are many ERP vendors on the market so it can be overwhelming to find the perfect one. The signs of a good ERP vendor are:
– A good reputation
– Strong communication skills
– A realistic implementation plan that doesn’t omit any costs. A realistic plan will include the total cost of the system, implementation, and additional costs.
– They provide employee training
– They’re honest about the challenges you might face along the way and the assurance of the expertise to fix them
– They provide support after integration to troubleshoot problems, provide software updates, and optimization
4. Invest time in ERP demos
After carefully considering your ERP requirements and finding a suitable ERP vendor, you need to schedule the demos. Try to narrow your list to under five vendors so you can focus on them. Some vendors will come to your office to provide in-house demos while others will do online demos. Take your time with these demos because they’re the last step before you close the deal. Ask all your questions and understand their value proposition in real time.
Compare these vendors without any salesperson bias to find the best fit. After the demo, look at your ERP requirement list to see how many criteria have been met.
5. Create an effective implementation plan
Work with your ERP provider to map an effective and realistic implementation plan. When drafting the Statement Of Work, ensure you mention the time, costs, scope, and milestones to avoid future conflicts.
An ERP can be a game-changer for your business by giving you greater growth opportunities. If you’re an eCommerce business looking for an ERP, check out Kentro. We provide the best-in-class ERP solutions for eCommerce businesses to help you streamline your operations so your employees can focus on what they do best.