When looking to upgrade its enterprise resource planning application, BAE Systems Military Air and Information used less IT employees and started to roll the function into business, according to Computer Weekly. The manufacturer is in the design phase of its project that is looking to unify seven different ERP systems. Organizations may want to look to Dynamic NAV to simplify their use of these programs.

John Booth, head of this project, said there were potential dangers of this, such as battles between business members and those who already thought it was working well. He was aware of this danger when bringing people from the business side to his team.

"Within my core team I have got 70 people, of them, approximately 40 to 45 are from the business functions," he said. "They have been nominated to come and join the project because of their knowledge of applications and their knowledge of processes."

Thus far the team has been successful in minimizing classes and battles. There are also more business functions working with subject matter experts to help analyze problems that pop up to a greater detail. Booth said when operating in the manufacturing industry, there should be a core team that holds ERP together, but this should be linked in with members of the business team who will re-engineer business processes and make them more valuable within the software.

Looking for a replacement ERP system
Dave Turbide wrote on Manufacturing Business Technology that there may be some businesses that are compelled to keep old ERP solutions around, such as if the system is reliable, affordable and not limiting the organization. However, if a company is being held back, getting slow response time, falling behind on market technology or housing legacy apps that cost too much, it is almost certainly time to upgrade ERP.

"User frustration and complaints, and the business difficulties that are a direct result of system shortcomings, will quickly place an impetus behind a replacement project," Turbide said. "Sometimes, however, a company is just unhappy with their current system. Often, this is because the system was never completely and successfully implemented and therefore has never gained the confidence of company management or become a valued resource."

Turbide said doing nothing is a choice that businesses always have, but if they do decide to upgrade ERP, it should be done patiently and with poise to make sure the business benefits from the decision.

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.