For many businesses, it can be tough to manage all of the different needs required of a complete and effective implementation of enterprise resource planning software. This is especially true for manufacturing and fabrication businesses, as these companies have a wide variety of operational needs that need to be effectively met for ERP to be considered a success. While selecting the right areas of focus and types of software is important, so are other areas, such as defining employee expectations, training on new systems and cost management.
Here are three pieces of advice for managing the installation and use of ERP software, as well as getting the most out of it:
- Don't be afraid of new technologies: Having a system that takes advantage of recent developments in technology, such as a mobile inventory management system or other component that uses cloud computing, can help boost effectiveness, according to Enterprise Apps Today. For business that have multiple physical locations or a high level of need for insight into stock levels, mobile can be a great solution. Being able to use a tablet or smartphone to track inventory inside of the warehouse can help businesses better meet requirements for supply chain insight without having to invest in expensive hardware or training with a system.
- Education and inclusion need to be priorities: Companies should involve employees in all steps of the ERP process, from initial selection to long-term use. By helping workers better understand how specific parts of an ERP system will be used, staff can gain a more in-depth understanding of the impact on their specific job duties Teaching employees about the flow of a system, as well as how to utilize the individual components that they will need to be using on a daily basis. Polling staff members about what they would like to see a new platform do can be a valuable source of information to guide the selection of a specific vendor and system.
- Go Modular: As TechTarget pointed out, one of the biggest price tags associated a new ERP system can come from the customization of software. Instead of this costly approach, businesses should consider a modular system such as Microsoft Dynamics NAV. These systems allow for the selection of specific components that provide the best fit for a company, instead of the extra expense of customizing an existing platform.