Choosing a new enterprise resource planning (ERP) system is a decision that should not be taken lightly. Partnering with the right ERP software provider can make it easy for organizations to streamline their operations, automate processes, and provide key data for the decision-makers tasked with moving the company forward. Choosing the wrong one will create only frustration.
Even IT professionals aren’t generally specialists in ERP software selection, and it usually takes teams of stakeholders to decide which vendors to choose. ERP comparison charts make it easier for anyone, including those who aren’t yet intimately familiar with modern ERP technology, to see what each vendor has to offer.
What’s Included in Comparison Charts?
Comprehensive ERP software comparison charts contain all of the information required to make an informed decision about which vendor to work with. Modern ERP systems can have hundreds, if not thousands, of different features and functions, which makes collecting and analyzing information about each option a prohibitively time-consuming process. Comparison charts combine the best of full capabilities reports with the ability to view multiple options at the same time to get a complete view of the available features.
Professionally created charts contain not just information that can be garnered from a company’s website and publicly available literature but also data that are only available through the submission of RFIs to vendors. This information would take weeks to collect otherwise, leaving most companies looking at only limited options.
Top Priorities for ERP Software Comparison Analysis
Every business has a different set of priorities, many of which depend heavily on the industry in which the company operates. The teams responsible for choosing ERP vendors need to have detailed lists available of what they should prioritize when evaluating different options.
Even the most detailed comparison report won’t tell any specific team of decision-makers which options are appropriate for their particular business model. That said, some priorities should top every team’s list. They include the following.
ERP vendors should be prepared to provide ongoing support from technical experts with specific knowledge of their clients’ fields. After all, the demands placed on an eCommerce retailer, for example, are very different from those of a manufacturing company. Every industry and every company is different, and their ERP solutions should be as well.
All ERP software vendors can be expected to provide start-to-finish support throughout the software selection, customization, and deployment process. Not all of them offer post-deployment help, which can be a problem for companies that require additional training or adjustments to their ERP systems. Providers that offer ongoing post-deployment training make much better partners.
Data Integration and Maintenance
Many aspects of ERP deployment pose challenges to the companies migrating over to new solutions, but few more so than data integration. A lack of expertise can leave companies with missing or duplicate data, creating issues for years to come. ERP software providers should be able to define what data must be extracted from the legacy system to ensure accuracy.
It Takes Some Time to Make the Right Choice
The effectiveness of an organization’s ERP system can dramatically impact everything from productivity to worker satisfaction, and more. It’s worth taking the time to define needs, evaluate all of the options, and compare features to make sure the company is choosing the right ERP solution.