We recently came across a very simple but pretty valid list of questions you can ask of your own firm to see whether the business software you run today is in need of upgrading. The questions come from a white paper first published in 2013 by IBM, entitled “Integrated ERP Guide.”
- Are you having problems getting access to information about your business?
- Is it taking too long to close your books at the end of the month?
- Are your customers finding it hard to get information about their orders?
- Do you have inventory management issues?
- Does accounting take too long to do basic processes?
- Do you have outdated processes – manual data aggregation or paper-based documentation?
Additional questions you should be asking and answering are:
- Are your IT resources too time consuming or costly?
- Do you have disparate, stand-alone software systems?
- Do you have a number of different software applications for different purposes?
- Is your company’s growth complicated or hindered by software integration issues?
Aberdeen Research’s Nick Castellina suggests starting the conversation by looking internally, with IBM’s Luis Gallardo adding that it’s important to “focus on your culture, what is important to you in terms of value, current pains and needs. This will provide core values and a needs-based set of questions.”
And their paper highlights one key tip that we at PSSI would put above all others:
“Strong project management correlates very strongly with a successful ERP implementation. An ERP implementation should be viewed not just as an IT solution, but also as a business solution that will transform your organization, helping it to become more effective and efficient.”
We could scarcely have said it better.