Monday, September 19, 2011

Do you really need a new ERP solution?

Before you decide to let your frustration with your existing system lead you to a new and perhaps more complex system, including capital expenditures for new hardware, software, and implementation, you may want to ask your team a few questions.

What is it exactly that we hope to accomplish with a new system?  Will the new system allow us to be more efficient, more competitive with a reasonable Return on Investment (ROI).

Have you taken the time to calculate the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO)?  A lot of new systems that run on smaller systems will actually require more in administrative overhead, maintenance and support.

Do you have consensus from top management?  How about the shop floor worker?  Do not underestimate the input and acceptance needed by all employees.  Most organizations have eliminated “extra” personnel, enough so that those that are still working are doing the tasks formally done by several people.  You are going to get pushback and delayed implementation and higher costs if they do not see how the new solution is going to make their efforts easier.

Implementing a new Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) solution can be complex.  A dedicated project manager and team approach is a necessary to make sure everything goes as smooth as possible.  Nothing is perfect and there will be bumps in the road.  Your organization needs to build a consensus that life will be better after this transition.

It will help to define clearly what specific problems you are hoping to solve with a new solution.  You really cannot be too specific or include too much detail during the analysis phase.  It is one of many criteria used to evaluate the multitude of solutions available.  Other considerations would include direct access to the software supplier, do you also have local support, and what hardware support will you have?  How long can you afford to be “down” before your business suffers?

Most technology processes have a “Best Practice”.  How well will the new solution fit?  How flexible will it be when you integrate your other existing systems?  Will you replace your other systems as part of the implementation?  Other systems may include credit card processing, Ecommerce and Supplier portal solutions, shop floor control, printing and labeling, and warehouse management just to name a few systems.

How well will the new system adapt to changes in your business?  Will it grow with you or will you outgrow it?

Dolvin Consulting works with industry experts VAI and IBM to understand and qualify your needs to make sure there is a good match between your challenges and available solutions. 

Do not wait, contact us today to see how we can help you navigate the constant flux of change.

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