How To Choose The Right ERP Software for Your Business
Tags: ERP  
29/07/2011 12:00 AM

One of the biggest mistakes you can make in your business is to assume that, all ERP Software is the same. There are huge variations in quality, capability and technical function which means that choosing the right one is as crucial to the success of your business as any other record-keeping decision you make. In order to select the product that is the best fit for your needs, you need to analyse it in the context of your operations. It is not sufficient to select the software with the best reviews, or that seems to have the most features – it is a case-by-case comparison, and taking the time to choose wisely will yield great returns in the future.

Identify Your Strengths and Weaknesses
The first thing you need to understand if you are choosing a piece of software that is going to help your business run more smoothly is where it is currently falling short. You can't improve on something (or at least you can't measure that improvement in any meaningful way) unless you first understand the area in which you need to improve. As such, create a comprehensive analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of your business. What are you proud of in your operating structure? What works? What would you like to improve on? How would you like to see the new software impact on your business? Once you have answered these questions you have a set of requirements which you can start applying to potential software.

Technical Issues
These days we run our businesses with more software programs than ever before, which is why the technological aspect of your decision should not go unconsidered. Evaluate how the technology of the new software will align with your existing software and operating system, and how easy or practical it will be to streamline your programs. Clunky technology or software that isn't a great fit is a time-drain, and in a situation where you are aiming to increase efficiency you want to stay well away from this.

Ask Around and Take Your Time
It seems simple, but too often business owners make a decision that they need new software, and implement it on the same day in order to tick it off their 'things to do' list. When you're choosing software that will have an effect on the running of your business and possibly its future success, it's essential to take your time on the decision. Talk to colleagues, industry contacts and friends to gain a better understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of certain products. When you research online, most of the information you'll find will be sales-pitch based, which means that in order to get a realistic picture of how different programs operate, you need to speak with people who have actually used it.

With ERP Software – or with any Business Software for that matter – it is essential to put the thought and planning in before making a decision, so that when you finally do implement the program changes the transition is smooth, easy and hopefully extremely beneficial to your business!

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