An Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) implementation is a huge undertaking, so it’s no surprise that many companies adopt the saying “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” when referring to their ERP systems. But what happens when the system is broken and begins causing you problems rather than providing you with solutions?
A major reason companies refuse to look at new ERP solutions is that most small and medium-sized business leaders don’t have the time, personnel or budget to take on an update to their ERP legacy system.
Implementing a brand new ERP solution affects the entire organization and the way it operates. From reevaluating current processes and team configurations to revisiting workflows between departments, a new ERP forces management to examine the way their company currently operates and map out the ways it should operate within a new system.
But for most businesses, the benefits of implementing a modern ERP solution that streamlines processes and helps manage business growth far outweighs the costs.
So how do you know if your company is ready to take the plunge into implementing a new ERP? Here are seven signs it’s time for a change:
1. Small Inefficiencies Are Adding Up
Chances are good that there are more efficient ways to accomplish many of your business tasks. Tech moves fast, and the loss of efficient processes is a hidden cost, especially for non-cloud software. An outdated ERP legacy system also increasingly redirects resources into maintenance instead of allowing you to focus that money and energy on solving real problems.
2. Business Needs Are Outgrowing ERP Capability
You know why you bought your first ERP system—to help manage a growing company. But if increasing maintenance and license fees are adding up as the team’s headcount grows, you may be dealing with a legacy system that doesn’t scale well. ERP software should support and streamline your team’s growth, not hinder it or generate more work.
3. Customer Needs Aren’t Being Met
Customers, suppliers and partners expect direct access to billing, shipping and inventory data. They don’t want to call someone to get this information and you don’t want to generate unnecessary customer service calls. Older systems weren’t designed for multiple user access and tend to be less customer-service oriented. These complexities are forcing many companies to rethink their software’s user experience. A cloud ERP solution can provide instant, anywhere access to real-time information. If you’re not providing that business value, your competitors might have an edge on you.
4. Workplace Dynamics Are Changing
Today’s business leaders are often working with employees or whole branches in remote locations due to telecommuting or hiring off site contractors. Operating with a business model that depends on a centralized office is simply not practical anymore. The user experience should extend beyond company walls so that productivity is never interrupted.
5. Employees Are Mobile and Information Needs to be, Too
By leveraging the potential of this decentralized world, more and more of the workforce is doing work from mobile devices on the road using tablets, laptops and phones. A cloud ERP solution turns this mobility into a clear business advantage by providing a seamless user experience from the office to home to mobile and back. An upgrade to a cloud-based ERP empowers scalability as you add employees, anywhere in the world.
6. You Don’t Have Access to Real-Time Information
If you have to dig for up-to-date information, it slows critical decision-making and impairs problem-solving capacity. With the Business Intelligence (BI) capabilities available in today’s data-driven business environment (Microsoft’s Power BI, Google Analytics, OData, and so much more), it’s going to be critical to add the value of interpretation and curation to that information. You need to know what parts of your business are working and what aren’t—and you need to know fast. This is one of the key drivers to consider when you replace your ERP.
7. Your ERP Isn’t Keeping up with Changing Regulations
Tax rules (and other industry compliance regulations) change every year, if not more often. For many businesses, compliance demands are constantly shifting. A cloud-based ERP solution allows companies to keep pace with changing compliance information. Legacy ERP solutions simply weren’t built for agile business pivots; what would happen if your company experienced a sudden increase in demand or was hit with an opportunity to expand? Could your ERP system scale to meet these changes?
If you’re a small or mid-sized business leader looking to streamline operations and ensure scalability, this is a great time to consider an ERP upgrade. A cloud-based solution provides the advantages of enterprise software without needing an enterprise-sized IT budget. As your business continues to grow, a cloud-based ERP will be able to grow with you.
Learn how a cloud-based platform like Acumatica Cloud ERP provides customers with the accounting, finance, operations, distribution and inventory functionality they need to be successful by reaching out to us. We’d love to chat.