The fundamentals of running a business have changed drastically over the past several years, simply because our fast-evolving technology solutions have enabled us to change how we operate on a daily basis. The focus today is on solutions that help businesses of all scopes and sizes streamline their operations, deliver stellar services, and ensure that all the pieces of the puzzle fit perfectly. Enter: enterprise resource planning software (or ERP for short), the modern-day necessity for running a smooth business operation.
From forecasting demand, regulating inventory, managing security, and all the way to risk management and legal compliance, these software solutions serve to integrate all the various processes within a single organization and help them work in harmony. The data that one system collects another one can use to make smarter predictions, while the sum of all analyses allows managers to keep track of any imminent threats and prevent issues in the long run. However, implementing such a complex system is so much more than a push of a button. Here are a few things to keep in mind when you’re about to use an ERP system for your company.
Help your employees adapt to the new system
Yes, ERP software is a business god send for companies in any industry, but their usability will vary depending on how prepared the end-user is for the integration. After all, ERP is complex, and it will change how your daily operations and tasks are managed, hence the need to help and prepare your employees for such a major change.
For starters, before you even begin the actual implementation, make sure you conduct thorough training and education on how to use your ERP solution. They will need to be able to work, spot any potential glitches in the system, and find optimal solutions until the entire integration is complete. Just like with any other novel solution, your team will need time to figure out the ins and outs of your new ERP software, so remember to factor in the learning curve into your integration process, too.
Always establish requirements
Since ERP is a very multifaceted digital tool, your business needs to clearly define expectations, project type and scope, as well as key performance indicators (KPIs) before the actual switch to the new system. How else would you be able to know if the move has been successful at all? So, as you train your staff to adapt to their new roles, begin by assessing what you want your ERP solution to encompass.
From establishing key objectives as your guiding stars for the implementation, all the way to setting up milestones and deadlines, you’ll simplify the entire process of complex data migration, assigning roles, and allocating workload. Some steps may carry certain risks, so it’s wise to assess those risks and see what you can do to mitigate them and protect your data. Plus, this is that time in your business development when you will undoubtedly spot certain gaps in your existing systems and processes, so you might need to make other changes to your operations before you begin using your new ERP solution.
Migrating your system to the cloud
Not all clouds are created equal, and you’ll learn that as soon as you start looking for the most effective ways to implement and use your ERP system. Although ERP can come in two different forms, as cloud-based and on-premise, there are numerous advantages to selecting a cloud solution that will fit your business needs. To be more specific, in the case of comprehensive ERP systems, relying on a powerful enterprise cloud solution based on a hyper-converged infrastructure can be extremely beneficial for your business.
Not only do you get a minimalist cloud infrastructure that’s perfectly simplified for the end-users, but you also get all the perks of a scalable cloud solution, and its built-in cybersecurity measures (such as a distributed firewall, antivirus software, and the like). Plus, you can migrate your entire ERP structure on such a cloud platform, together with all of your financial systems, and any other business applications you might need.
Test before the final launch
Finally, as streamlined and user-friendly as your ERP may be, your employees and your business-wide projects might need some time to adapt. In addition to providing ongoing training and education to prepare your teams for the switch, you should also consider conducting thorough tests of your new ERP solution before you launch.
This will give you some extra time to conduct any final changes, to adapt the system, add various configurations, and make sure that everything is set for the final move. ERP pilot tests are a perfect way to check if the solution is a good match for your business and to see what changes you’ll need to make on the go.
Automating with the help of ERP and its many accompanying sub-systems and tools is more than beneficial for any company out there. However, while the solution is effective, its implementation will define how successfully you’ll be able to use the actual product in your business, so make sure to add these steps to your process and preserve your business from issues during the migration to a complex ERP system.