As an ERP professional, there are two questions that I am asked quite often by both prospective and current customers. I already addressed the first question, ‘How do I know my business needs ERP’, in an earlier blog and would like to focus on the second question, ‘How do I get the most out of my ERP system?’ Simply put, there are several ways to optimize your ERP solution, but these three tips can help improve the entire process:
Choose your vendor carefully:
Choosing the right ERP vendor is probably the most important factor when trying to get the most out of your system. With so many vendors offering a variety of solutions, it’s important to do research, focus on your business needs and find out how the ERP System will support those needs. In addition to this, major factors to consider are the cost and time it will take to implement the system, and the vendor’s company culture, consistency and customer success rates. Pay attention to the vendor’s options for User education and training; your knowledge of the software’s functionality is imperative to success and ERP ROI.
Invest in your software training and education so you can use utilize your modules to their fullest potential:
As I briefly mentioned above, having proper knowledge of how to use your ERP system should be a priority for your business. Without this knowledge, your use of the software will never be at its fullest potential. Think of it this way: ERP systems streamline your business and make processes more efficient- why would you dig a hole with your hands when you have a shovel? By scheduling the training you and your employees need up front, and ensuring all relevant staff participates fully, your business can avoid a world of hurt and expense down the road – and also foster a sense of confidence and positive perception about the new system. Let’s face it, when we don’t know how to use a program or tool, we get frustrated about it, and see it in a negative light, thereby making us dread when we need to use it. But those feelings can be instantly reversed when we suddenly have an understanding of how it works. And with the optimized knowledge, your modules will be used to their fullest potential.
SYSPRO offers many training options on a monthly or bi-monthly basis and these options cater to each respective customer’s individual needs. In a previous blog we discussed the value of ‘bite-size learning.’
Don’t resist your system due to fear of change:
By nature, humans are creatures of habit. We like what we’re used to, what we know and we generally aren’t open to change. When implementing a new system, fear of change and ultimately resisting the new system can be a huge hurdle for the company. To find success with your ERP system, it’s important to cope with new capabilities and spend time learning them, not stopping and giving up when you hit a road block. If you share some of these fears with your sales and implementation team, they can use their best practices to walk you through it and find a solution. We’ve recently offered some tips on preparing yourself for change .
Open communication with your vendor about your business goals is the best way to get the most out of your system. Utilize the tips above and create your own best practices for your ERP solution success.
What other suggestions would you add?