4 Steps to Choose an Appropriate ERP for Business

In this post we are going to talk about the steps to choose an ERP that every company should take into account when investing in an enterprise resource planning system. The objective is none other than to give answers to all those questions that arise when talking about an ERP, in addition to questioning the way you have been working up to now. Only by looking inside your business, examining and analyzing your needs, can you be sure to make the right decision in the process of purchasing an ideal business solution, something that will put you closer to achieving business success.

Your business evolves as your needs evolve. You may have gone through different periods where you have become aware of the waste of time and money working with your current software. At this point in which the search for a management system becomes essential to continue with the smooth running of the company, you must take into account several factors. The chosen solution must unify processes that allow the growth, cohesion and productivity of the organization.

Leave aside the frustration generated by the restrictions imposed by your current systems and look for a way to continue your way in the market, improving and measuring every decision you make. You must take the first step as soon as possible. Decide to change.

Commitment to change

Accepting and then adapting to change is one of the most complicated parts of running a business. Hundreds of new opportunities pass before you every day, but the technology you currently use does not allow you to see them. Your employees are forced to work with outdated systems, endless spreadsheets where finding answers is impossible, all of this is a drag on the road to success.

Is it time to take a step forward?

If we are thinking about making a change to revive the business, we need to think about where our systems are holding us back. Often we will find that wasted hours are disrupting productivity levels and directly affecting the bottom line.

Where should you start?

It's time to turn the way you do things around, but where should you start? As you explore the options that an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system can offer, you'll have a host of questions. You will have the impression that you are faced with a daunting project that will require a large investment. At this point you should not panic, everything is simpler than it seems.

Will it be worth it?
  • Do you want to be more efficient by automating tasks and processes?
  • Could you make decisions faster if you had a better business intelligence system?
  • Is it important to have an accessible information system?
  • Have you found yourself counting the advantages of working with an ERP versus the losses that your current systems represent?
If a big YES appears in your head as an answer to these questions, maybe betting on an ERP starts to sound better than it seemed. Once you have taken the step that the company needed, the next step is to determine your needs.

Identify your needs

Let's move on to the second step in choosing an ERP. Every good decision requires effort and a well-defined game plan, choosing an ERP will be no different. In this process it is essential to have the opinions of employees, they will be the first to experience the change and therefore it is important to have the perspectives that give the different functions of each position and department. Knowing what you and your employees need will ensure a quick return on investment, in addition to having a team that is involved and happy with the new way of working.

What has been holding you back until now?

The first questions you should ask yourself are the reasons for the change: talk to users in all departments, calculate the time spent on manual processes, collect errors, bugs and inefficiencies.

What do you need from the new system?

Create a wish list: What are the main improvements you want to achieve, what tasks do you dream of automating, what information do you need for your reporting and how would you like to access it, how could it improve project management, finance or customer relationship management?

What other tools should your ERP work with?

The new system must flow with the environment both technically and functionally: What level of flexibility do you need, what applications should integrate their functions with the ERP, will you need industry-specific customizations, on-premise or SaaS?

What does the rest of the world say?

Many people have gone through your situation before, you should take advantage of all the information available to you: look for experiences on the Internet and social networks, ask acquaintances who have made changes in their company, don't be afraid to ask for help.

Once you have gathered all the information, talk to your team. It's time to decide.

Choose the right ERP

Much of the work is already done, you have decided to take a step forward and you know what you need. If you have started the search for the ERP that best suits your needs, you will have realized that there are a considerable number of solutions. Different manufacturers, various models, numerous modes of use... Don't get discouraged, you should analyze all the possibilities calmly and always keeping in mind where you want to go.

Create a list of possible candidates

There is an endless number of solutions, so it is important to discard those that cannot give you what you are looking for. Keep the three strongest ones and start an in-depth analysis of their functionalities and features. It is an investment for the future, so it is important to know the reliability of the provider, its vision of the future and the evolution of the solution.

See the solutions in action

The best way to get to know an ERP is to see it in the field. There are numerous demonstrations on the web, in addition to those offered by software distributors or partners. Watch how-to videos and check out free versions for a limited period of time. At this point you should be able to ask all kinds of questions about the solution.

Time to do the math

An ERP is a major investment, but we are talking about a decision that will be linked to the future performance of your business, going by price alone would not be a good decision. At this point, mathematics will be important, but not more so than the security of having a system that really meets the needs you have set and that gives you confidence.

You have everything you need to take the plunge, but first you must decide who you will trust to turn your dreams into reality.

Choose the best technology partner

We are near the end of the process, you have decided to change, you know what you need and the solution that will make you take that step you have been looking for so long, but there is still the last step to choose an ERP: Who is going to be in charge of making your dreams come true? Here are some questions you should ask your partner before choosing.

Is their ERP knowledge certified?

If you want a good result, you have to work with the best. An important point in your favor will be that the technology consultant you choose has passed some courses that certify that the partner has the necessary skills and knowledge to carry out the project. In other words, the company you choose must have the recognition and trust of the company that created the software.

How are your teams organized?

An important aspect in projects that will last for months and will involve a significant outlay for the company, is to know who will perform the work on a daily basis. Even once the work is finished you will need to receive support and make modifications, so having a team assigned throughout the life of the project is essential.

Have you worked in my industry before?

The number of Partners is wide, however experience is a differential factor that not all of them are able to cover. You must be clear about the difference between experience in the knowledge and use of the software or solution and experience in the sector you are working in. A partner who does not know the needs of your environment will be useless.

Where do you have a geographical presence?

Although nowadays you can receive a good service without the need to have someone on site, it is important to know the Partner's areas of action and their availability to come to your offices if you ask them to do so.

If you are immersed in the process of buying a management software for your company and did not know where to start, we hope that these four steps to choose an ERP have helped you. Keep an eye on our blog, in the coming weeks we will be publishing everything you need to know to find the best ERP for your company.