Enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions are becoming more agile and flexible. This is important and necessary as businesses become more complex and change more rapidly than they did in the past. Modern ERP systems are highly scale-able, adaptable and can be tailored to your specific environment.
Some of the options and technologies that are making this possible are the use of cloud-based applications, software as a service (Saas), hybrid IT structures and advanced integration capabilities. These developments already taken already great ERP systems to a whole new level, making them more powerful and necessary than ever before.
The ERP industry is maturing, although it is constantly evolving. The solutions have improved dramatically and the return on investment is now even more evident. It is particularly valuable in these times of uncertainty and constant change.
The basic idea of having a single source of centralized information that is accurate and easily accessible in real-time is still the basic concept behind ERP. There are, however, a host of additional improvements, tech background features and integrations that will continue to become available.
Let’s look at some of the main developments that are taking place.
Software As A Service
SaaS (software as a service) has revolutionized ERP. Firstly, it’s had a dramatic effect on costs as there are no upfront hardware costs or maintenance costs. This has made it more affordable and practical for smaller and medium-sized businesses, and in turn, increased competition and further added to lower costs due to aggressive discounting and pricing structures.
It has also made ERP more scalable and flexible. SaaS is a powerful new technology that fits perfectly with ERP and will continue to take it to new heights, improving and enhancing the service available and making it a more useful tool.
The move over to a SaaS-based system does not happen overnight. If you are looking into upgrading an existing ERP system or entering the market for the first time, it is important to look at the benefits of going the SaaS route.
With the massive amount of data coming into ERP systems from multiple areas, internally and externally, there is a lot for the system to deal with. Modern systems are now integrated with multiple other channels and platforms which just adds to the data. This allows your company to be a value added reseller in any industry.
The accuracy and availability of this data in real-time are some of the main benefits ERP has to offer. When you need data, information and reports, you need them immediately and they have to reflect the current status of whatever aspect of the business you are looking at.
Modern ERP services provided by companies like Kenandy are able to provide fast, reliable data anywhere, anytime. The insightful analytics the data provides will improve decision making, forecasting and control. It will make your company more efficient, improve customer service and increase profits.
When evaluating a system, ensure it has the capability to cope with the data requirements and is scalable to continue to deal with them as the business expands and becomes more complex.
The growth of the industry and new technologies has enabled smaller players to enter the market at very competitive pricing. Some of these smaller companies are more agile and adaptable so do not discount them when considering vendors. This competition and the entry of new players is a trend that is expected to continue which will lead to improvements in service, better offerings and cost reductions.
Modular systems are also available which are highly affordable and can be upgraded and added as budgets permit or the need arises. You can cherry-pick the most essential elements to start with and grow from there. As soon as you start to see the improvements ERP provides and its subsequent ROI, you’ll soon start to incorporate more aspects of your business or integrate externally. Going modular isn’t a bad way to start if you have budgetary constraints.
What started as an intelligent online software system to integrate the various departments within an enterprise and streamline processes, through a single source of data has evolved dramatically.
While ERP still provides all of the above and does it well, it now offers so much more. New features and capabilities come out regularly and the majority of the systems are able to easily incorporate these new benefits to your advantage.
By incorporating more aspects of the business as well as integrating with external parties such as suppliers, vendors and markets, the benefits will increase and the power and value of the data will increase.
The future of ERP is exciting and it is increasingly able to streamline your internal processes and free staff up to work on more profitable, productive activities. Decision making will improve as will customer satisfaction. It will only continue to evolve, keeping up with your business growth and offering more solutions over time.
The return on investment in ERP implementation will be faster and better than in the past. All of this is good news for your business.
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