Upgrading a business system is not a small task, and it can sometimes be hard to tell if a current system is sufficient or if an upgrade is worth the time and money. This is especially true when it comes to replacing a company-wide system such as an enterprise resource planning solution (ERP). Unlike upgrading accounting software, ERP touches all parts of a business.
If your business is not currently using a cloud-based ERP solution, or is still relying on QuickBooks and a range of niche software packages, the answer is almost certainly that you should upgrade; modern ERP systems are far more connected, efficient and cost-effective than the previous generation of ERP solutions, and they are far better at supporting business growth than a collection disparate software packages.
But if you’re still uncertain, here are 10 questions to ask that will help you know if now’s the time for a new ERP system.
- Are your sales and inventory numbers consistently unreliable, lack real-time information and cause difficulty in making the right business decisions?
Modern ERP systems automatically collect, consolidate, organize and analyzes real-time business data into a single source of truth for improved data accuracy and reliability. With the ability to access this data precisely and when needed, executives and staff are empowered and able to make better business decisions.
- Are warehouse tracking difficulties causing you to have too much or not enough inventory?
By automating key functions, linking supplier systems and boosting responsiveness, ERP enhances a supply chain and fuels better demand forecasting, procurement, and inventory management.
- Do you carry products with a limited shelf life such as fresh produce or seasonal items?
ERP excels at tracking and managing time-sensitive stock, whether perishable or seasonal. Because ERP brings end-to-end visibility and allows for robust process automation, time-sensitive stock can more easily be monitored and managed.
- Does your organization find it challenging to forecast sales or predict future performance?
With the power to automatically generate reports and analyze data for financial, sales, inventory, procurement, administrative and all other departments, as well as connect with third-party systems such as those from retailers and suppliers, ERP systems easily deliver data and predictions for improved planning and forecasting.
- Is your organization currently using an antiquated or homegrown inventory system?
Homegrown inventory systems require maintenance and are hard to upgrade. Newer cloud-based ERP systems are managed by the vendor and are always current and able to work with the latest technologies.
Newer ERP systems also support best practices, so businesses don’t need to reinvent the wheel or rely on inefficient processes.
- Is it difficult to determine accountability when sales and inventory numbers are misaligned?
Because various functions and business processes are stored in a single database with ERP, employees from different divisions can utilize the same accurate data for different needs.
- Could your organization benefit from process standardization?
ERP links systems and data between departments to simplify business processes and create greater synergy through standardization. Templates and inherent process standardization make it easy for businesses to set processes and use them company-wide or where necessary.
- Does your executive team have a clear understanding of the total cost of ownership (TCO) of a new ERP system?
With older ERP and on-premise business systems, licensing is just part of the total cost. There also are support, hardware and administrative costs, among others.
With modern cloud-based ERP solutions, TCO is much easier to calculate because there’s just the subscription price and most of the other costs are rolled into this single number.
- Is your organization prepared to devote the time and resources to accurately document its requirements prior to selecting an ERP vendor or enterprise solution?
A business might be ready for a new ERP system from a functional standpoint, but assessing needs prior to choosing a new ERP system is critical for a successful rollout.
Businesses that are otherwise ready for a new ERP system can get their documentation and planning in order by using Navigator’s free ERP Evaluation Guide.
- Is your organization prepared to enlist the help of an independent ERP consultant?
An independent ERP consultant can play a huge role in minimizing risk, speeding up the selection process, facilitating implementation and boosting the overall success and value of an ERP solution.
Antiquated business systems slow down growth and hinder efficient operations, which is why even smaller companies are adopting modern ERP solutions.
If you answered yes to any of the questions above, it might be time to invest in a new ERP solution.
If you have questions about the right system fit, or want to learn more about what replacement entails, you can reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org or (801) 642-0123 and we’ll be happy to give you guidance on your best next step.
To gain more insight on cloud ERP solutions, download our guide, Understanding Cloud ERP for Non-IT Executives.