Enterprise resource planning software does far more than provide the option to automate current processes, but that's the approach that some businesses take with these systems. There are certainly aspects of operations in the manufacturing and warehousing industries that don't necessarily need to be updated but can be automated for a boost in efficiency, such as physical inventory counts. However, there are plenty of new aspects that can be introduced, from incorporating cloud-based access into operations to business intelligence reporting, that will create new, more useful operational structures to the long-term benefit of an organization.
Compounding the problem is the fact that many ERP vendors provide limited levels of customization or require significant downtimes to upgrade and change a system. The majority of providers have different programs that can be selected, but require that these items be selected in advance as a group, and set up during initial implementation. Panorama Consulting highlights the fact that having an ERP system without the modules a company needs to truly boost effectiveness can lead to serious problems. Instead of this all-in-one approach, companies should instead consider using a modular ERP system that can be changed and enhanced on an as-needed basis, such as Microsoft Dynamics NAV.
Be ready for the present and the future
ERPsearch points out that a truly useful, agile ERP system will be able to address current and future needs. Choosing a system that can easily be adapted and added onto will give businesses more options than a more monolithic ERP platform. By selecting and implementing individual modules as they're needed, companies can match their growth processes with their ERP software. Instead of front-loading a system in anticipation of an expansion that gets delayed, or neglecting to add needed functionality and then having the timetable on a new warehouse pushed up, companies can instead have a more organic, useful and less expensive approach to ERP use.
Being able to choose modules as their needed allows for more adaptive budgeting as well. Instead of requiring a large investment during the implementation phase and then small costs going forward, organizations in the manufacturing and warehousing fields can spread the costs out by planning to add modules in the future and developing an individual timeline. For companies that want to control spending, as well as have an adaptive, future-facing ERP system, a modular approach is the best choice.
Learn how to define your ERP strategy by downloading the white paper entitled "ERP in Manufacturing: Defining the ERP Strategy" from the DMS website today.