How to Avoid Common ERP-Related Problems
A reliable Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system is the key to any successful organization; it should be the foundation from which all operations are run, and can help your company make smart strategic decisions. It follows then, that something so integral to your business’ success, something that touches so many areas of your business, is prone to problems. While probable, ERP-related difficulties do not have to be inevitable. Below are three ways you can avoid common ERP-related problems and tips to circumvent them, ensuring your company is getting the most out of the software.
Stay Current with New Technology
Implementing an ERP system is not a quick under-taking. If done correctly, there was significant research before selecting a system and a partner, and then there was an implementation process, as well as the learning curve for your staff: none of which is quick. It is not unreasonable then it assume that once your ERP is “up and running”, provided you went with an on-premises option, your company is set and you shouldn’t have to worry about your ERP anymore. This is definitely not the case with ERP software. The technology is constantly improving features and adding functionality. And as such, if you do not stay current with the technology your software will fall behind – potentially causing security vulnerabilities and relying on outdated hardware that cannot be replaced. Moreover, after a while, you may realize your system is so far behind you need to start from scratch and go through the whole ERP implementation process over again. To avoid this, and stay current with new technology as it becomes available, it is wise to go with an upgrade subscription plan, a seamless way to remain technologically up-to-date.
Invest in Training
We all get excited at the prospect of a new “toy,” especially something that will potentially help make us more efficient. To that end, because ERP software can have such a significant impact on a company’s productivity and growth potential, companies tend to have their ERP go live before they are truly ready. Well-meaning and excited, but unknowing and under-trained staff can be your ERP’s biggest liability. While it may at times be frustrating, it is imperative that your company not rush going live with a new ERP system. Invest the time and effort to ensure your staff has adequate training and will be able to use the software to its fullest potential.
Plan for Growth
As your company grows, you will need to expand the use of your ERP system. Both with the amount of devices (or seats) accessing your system as well as features required. You will want to ensure your ERP is flexible enough to allow for mobile access with the ability to manage your business at all times, from anywhere. In addition, you will want to know that when you need to add new features and/or functionality you will be able to, that the ERP supports add-ons and customizations. By planning how your ERP will grow, be it with an upgrade subscription plan, or an unlimited support plan, or another strategy, the planning component is the key. The business world does not standstill and if you want to stay in business, you will need to continue to grow and adapt and plan for the inevitable, as well as the unexpected.
Your ERP system can and should be the foundation for your company’s success. It can make day-to-day processes faster, your staff more productive, and your strategic decisions more effective. However, your ERP needs care. ERP software is not one of those things you can set, forget, and not experience problems. With some planning and forethought, your ERP system can be the lynchpin in your company’s success.