ERP System Selection – What to Look For
How to Start Selection of Your ERP System
When the need for business software solutions has been identified, many companies shy away from making selection decisions just because of the sheer magnitude and presumed cost of the process and the systems themselves. But if the effort is approached with time-proven methodology, the process can be significantly less daunting – even less costly.
There are best-practice guidelines to follow as you wade into such a business-critical undertaking, including:
- Get upper management commitment and support
- Determine key stakeholders and those empowered to make selection decisions
- Define the purpose of the implementation – this will further drive the selection
- Identify detailed requirements – these can be further segregated into “must have” and “nice to have” categories. Be sure that key stakeholders agree on these requirements and their priorities
- Consider platform options – do you want an in-house solution, hosted or cloud environment, and will you require access and support for mobile or remote users
- Get vendor references and use them – if there are none, or they won’t discuss their experiences, it’s an obvious red flag
What to Look for in Selecting the Right ERP System
Especially if you lack significant in-house experience with system selection, it is wise to solicit the services of experienced consultants. Their guidance can help you break through any emotional or personal feelings that may derail discussions of actual business requirements and they will also help identify gaps or technical considerations. Even where you feel your in-house personnel have the knowledge and time to facilitate the system selection process, unbiased and knowledgeable input can be extremely beneficial to keeping the project focused, within budget and on schedule.
With the selection team established and ready to move forward, there are specific criteria you should consider in the process:
- Evaluate vendor offerings for potential systems that will be considered
- Does the system meet the list of requirements – rank answers for the “must have” items separately from the “nice-to-have” items
- Is the technology in line with your system architecture policies or statement of direction
- What additional functionality does the product offer (workflow, analytical tools)
- Can the vendor provide adequate training and implementation assistance – remote or on-site
- How many installations of the system are installed and how long has the vendor/software been available?
- Once the options have been narrowed down to a manageable number, obtain references and schedule demonstrations of the system’s functionality
Following these basics will prepare your company for the implementation stage of the system.
Mantralogix – ERP System Implementation Specialists
Mantralogix consultants are experts in ERP system selection and implementation. We can guide small to midsize businesses through requirements definition, selection, and implementation of the software solution that’s right for your particular needs. Leverage Mantralogix’ experience to provide true business value and a competitive advantage. We provide services for an extensive variety of businesses in many industries. Training and on-going support provide long-term value to our customers now and in the future.
Find out how the Mantralogix Advantage can be your competitive advantage. For us it’s personal, not just business.