In the digital era, Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software is helping businesses improve processes and productivity. But there are many which have not yet experienced the benefits and in some cases, this might be down to the lack of understanding or misunderstanding about what ERP does and who it is for.
Here are the common misconceptions of ERP to help you decide on ERP software:
1. It is only for the large companies
If you thought ERP was the preserve of the big corporates, nothing could be further from the truth. Leading ERP software is typically fully scalable and flexible, which means you only use the functionality you need according to your business model and requirements.
2. Takes a long time to roll out
While this might have been true in the earlier days of complex ERP systems, now ERP software is designed to be assimilated across a wide range of business models, making implementation easier. It might not take as much time as before, but it will take time and effort to make the chosen ERP system work for your business.
3. It is to impress customers
It is true that having a finely tuned ERP system in place can be of great benefit to your customers, but there is also a multitude of internal, operational advantages to ERP too - such as reducing repetitive tasks by automating or minimising the need to print because all the information is on the system.
4. It 'does everything for you'
If you are under the impression that ERP software can action your Enterprise Resource Planning from top to bottom - this is not the case. ERP works best when used by trained professionals, and the good news is that there are training programmes to educate uninitiated staff on the best practices.
5. Can be too costly
Depending on the type of ERP software you choose they will have different pricing structures. For example, a modular system can be costly if multiple modules are required whereas, an integrated solution may cost less as core functions are included in the initial purchase.
Another consideration is the on-going costs. Before deciding on which type of ERP to buy, always ask yourself is the solution scalable and how much will it cost if additional features are required?
Large-scale solutions can represent a considerable investment, but it should be remembered that in the long run, effective ERP can enable large savings.
6. ERP is the same as CRM
While it can include some elements of customer relationship management (CRM) software, it should be noted that they are two different things - one is customer focused, and the other can relate to the whole organisation.
7. You need to be an IT professional to understand ERP
IT can play a big part in the implementation of ERP, but ultimately ERP should be cross-departmental. Key staff members across the departments should have input in implementation because all staff can benefit from using it. IT professionals also need to be trained in elements of ERP, as it is not simply a knowledge of PC software which is needed – an understanding of how each department operates can also help.
8. Designed for management level employees
Front-line employees in sectors from manufacturing to pharmaceuticals can reap the rewards of ERP. ERP software is not intended to be restricted to management level staff, front-line staff can utilise the time-saving features to increase productivity and communicate to different stakeholders quickly and efficiently.
9. ERP software packages are 'off the shelf'
Every company is different, and there is a range of ERP software on the market catering to various types of organisations. Quite often solutions can be configured to suit a particular business model. But, it is advisable not to deviate too far from the standard because it could cause issues when you come to upgrade.
We hope this article has debunked some common ERP myths! For a comprehensive, all-in-one ERP system ideal for manufacturing and distribution - look no further than WinMan.