Enterprise software solutions are almost non-negotiable requirements if you want to run your business more smoothly. One such solution is ERP or enterprise resource planning. In a nutshell, its function is integrating the main aspects of business operations into a single system.
Each ERP software has core components or modules designed for specific areas of an organization. For example, there is a software module for accounting, human resources, customer relations, production, and marketing. You can choose which modules are most important, depending on the needs of your business.
How is ERP different from other enterprise software solutions?
What sets an ERP solution apart from other stand-alone software modules is a central database. This feature is valuable because it can help the company save time. Imagine how tedious it can be for each department to make duplicate entries so that other teams can have access to their data. In an ERP system, since the platform is shared, efficiency increases as a result.
How ERP systems work
There are several options available for implementing an ERP system. You can either choose on-premise, cloud, or hybrid platforms. Today, many small and medium enterprises prefer cloud solutions because it is easier to deploy and more affordable too.
If you want a more sophisticated approach to ERP, there are versions equipped with IoT, AI, and other advanced features. What is essential to understand here is that you choose to integrate with an ERP system to do away with outdated technology.
The function of an ERP system is anchored in its central database. This database is responsible for collecting, storing, and interpreting data. From here, end-users from various departments within the company can access any information using a single dashboard.
Why is ERP important?
According to experts, there are four main benefits of using an ERP system:
- Greater efficiency in accomplishing business processes
- Savings in IT cost
- Standardizing and unifying business processes
- A starting point to innovation
Most companies today appreciate the value an ERP system brings to the organization. With heightened visibility to cross-departmental data, not only is productivity enhanced, but problems and lapses are also minimized.
Possible challenges in implementing an ERP system
Although we cannot stress enough the advantages of deploying an ERP system, there are still some challenges which every company needs to overcome. Some of the common deterrents to adopting an ERP system are:
- It requires a significant upfront expense, especially if there is a need to upgrade the entire IT infrastructure.
- The company may not have the skills to implement and follow through with training
- May require the company to change management before and after deployment
- Some ERP systems may not provide the advanced features needed by the company, unlike stand-alone software solutions.
There may be instances when the company would require to use additional software modules to supplement the deficiencies of the ERP system.
With that said, these challenges may be overcome by analysing the needs of the company first before choosing to implement an ERP system. It is also essential to choose the right provider to guarantee that the modules are robust and equipped with all the necessary features required to prevent any deficiencies.