7 Top Considerations for ERP Software
Enterprise resource planning (ERP) software plays a critical role in improving the efficiency, productivity, and profitability of manufacturers across the spectrum of industry. ERP systems integrate core business functions, including finance, supply chain, production, customer/vendor management, and human resources, into a single, unified platform.
But with so many ERP software options available, how do you know which one is best for your business? The answer comes from examining the many variables enabling an ERP to do what it does best: maximize operational efficiencies. Here’s what to consider.
Choosing an ERP is a major decision
Manufacturers in enterprises of all sizes are turning to ERPs to enhance workflow visibility, streamline asset and resource management, and deliver real-time data to support better decision-making.
A manufacturing ERP should provide an easy-to-use, centralized method of managing every facet of facility processes and operations, from production to payroll. By streamlining every process from top to bottom, producers can become efficient and focus on continual improvement.
Ultimately, a strong ERP investment will save a business money while allowing it to produce a better product. As such, a manufacturer’s ERP choice must be rooted in the confidence it can integrate and manage all facets of operation seamlessly.
Which factors should drive ERP selection?
Choosing the right ERP is essential for today’s manufacturers, and you should consider several aspects before making the investment. As you search for an ERP, look closely at the following seven variables:
- Functional requirements. Many manufacturers choose a cloud-based deployment model to provide unlimited storage space, flexibility, and portability.
- Scalability and flexibility. It’s also important to have a scalable solution, especially for companies seeking to expand their operations or enhance their supply chain.
- Integration. For easy integration and customization, look for plug-and-play solutions. Open API options can ensure interoperability across a growing IIoT ecosystem.
- Security. Besides focusing on features, manufacturing organizations must seek ERPs with layered security for critical control capabilities to secure assets and provide mitigations from a variety of threats.
- Cost. Incremental costs will be accrued with an ERP. Consider these costs and the purchase amount, as well as initial consulting expenses. You’ll also spend money on training during implementation, along with yearly support and maintenance costs.
- Interface. To accommodate customization, look for a user-friendly interface — an ERP promoting ease and efficiency for your organization while remaining compatible with other components of the ERP.
- Vendor support. Most ERP systems are used for a decade or longer, so try to find a vendor who provides ongoing maintenance support not just for the ERP but also for all related infrastructure.
Pick an ERP in which you have confidence
Besides being functional, ERPs must meet your industry-specific needs. Businesses should do their due diligence to make a well-reasoned ERP choice. Many options are available, including legacy, out-of-the-box, SaaS, and configurable possibilities. The best choice depends on several factors, such as your budget, integration with current systems, scalability, and more.
By investing in the right ERP, your growing business will create much-needed visibility while optimizing everyday operational efficiencies.