How an ERP Comparison Can Save You a Headache When it Comes Time to Buy

Enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions promise to provide you with complete visibility across the enterprise, integrating your inventory, accounting, warehouse and supply chain activities. It sounds simple enough that any ERP evaluation should identify a robust solution to fit your needs. Before taking the quick step and implementing the brand name suggested by a colleague, do a thorough ERP comparison to avoid the pitfalls of a bad choice.

Your ERP Comparison Should Include an Evaluation of Your Needs

Every company has specific needs when it comes to an ERP comparison, and assuming an out-of-the-box solution is always the best approach can be costly and present problems when it comes time to deploy. You may have determined that the spreadsheet approach to keeping track of inventory and the warehouse has become too complicated and time-consuming. Those relying on these methods may feel differently. Involve your key staff as you assess the needs of your organization or your ERP comparison could easily include those solutions that are not the ideal fit.

An ERP Comparison Should Evaluate On-Premise and Hosted Solutions

You’ve seen the hype surrounding cloud computing and hosted solutions and perhaps your company has migrated certain platforms to this delivery method. Even if you already leverage hosted solutions in other divisions of your company, this is not the only indicator to determine if your ERP platform should be delivered in the same method. Your ERP comparison should include a complete evaluation of both hosted and on-premise delivery models, assessing both the up-front and long-term costs of both options.

If you already have the hardware and infrastructure to support an on-premise deployment, your ERP comparison may identify this option as more economical. Likewise, if you have no internal IT department and minimal infrastructure, a hosted ERP solution may make more sense.

Your ERP Comparison Must Include Support

Service level agreements must be an important element within any ERP comparison as you don’t want to rely on a solution that may or may not be available when you need it. Look for a high uptime guarantee as well as remote support capabilities and response time standards. If your ERP comparison includes solutions that are supported by a third-party vendor, talk to that vendor directly and evaluate their support standards. Visit other locations relying on the vendor’s support to gather real-world assessments of overall performance.

Don’t Forget Integration in Your ERP Comparison

One of the biggest headaches you are likely to encounter without a thorough ERP comparison will take place at the time of deployment. You already have a network and proven solutions in place. If your ERP platform does not integrate well with your current deployments, you could be looking at increased cost, longer deployment times and user resistance.

Don’t make the mistake of assuming that your ERP comparison should only consider price. Once you examine your needs, delivery model requirements, support and integration, you can then consider the cost. By following this method, you can avoid the headache when it comes time to buy.