Should We Stay or Should We Go?
By: Katie Foley
If your ERP system has you constantly asking yourself the words made famous by the band Clash’s song “Should I Stay or Should I Go” then it might be time to reevaluate your ERP needs. If you’ve been involved with an ERP project in the past, then you know how consuming choosing and implementing a new ERP system can be on both your company’s wallet and your employees’ time. Although a new ERP system requires upfront time and money, the result is always worth the effort. In this post we will look at reasons to stay, reasons to go, and how to come to a reasonable decision for your organization.
Should We Stay?
If you’re reading this post, then you’re probably feeling conflicted. Yes, there are many reasons you should switch to a new ERP system (more on that below!). However, there are also reasons to stay and to try to make it work with your current system.
- It’s expensive to change systems. ERP systems do require an upfront investment. Depending on whether you go cloud-based or on-premise this can be less or more expensive.
- It’s time-consuming to change systems. It takes time to research ERP systems, choose the right fit, and implement your chosen system. Training and testing often require employees to take attention off of their day-to-day responsibilities to focus on the ERP implementation at hand.
- We’re comfortable! Perhaps the most common reason to stay – it's easy. You know it, your employees know it, and change can be scary.
Should We Go?
If you’re still reading this post, then maybe the thought has crossed your mind - ‘we need a new ERP system.’ Here are some of the top reasons you may be feeling like it’s time for a new system.
- Your company has outgrown its ERP system. While the ideal ERP system can scale as your company grows, not all ERP systems do. If you invested in an ERP system as a startup or a small business and then experienced growth, your ERP system may not be able to keep up with your current needs.
- Your ERP system has not kept up with evolving technology. Technology is rapidly evolving. If your ERP vendor isn’t investing in staying current, then this could be another reason to find a new ERP system.
- The costs of your current ERP system are too high. Maybe the costs made sense when your company selected its ERP system years ago, but they are becoming too high to be worth the continued investment. With cloud-based options taking over the market, there may be more cost-effective ways for your company to run an ERP system.
- These are just a few of the many reasons a company may start to question its ERP system. Other reasons to consider switching include the ERP vendor providing poor customer service or the ERP system not offering remote access.
Making a Decision
First, consider if you can make it work with your current system. Would additional training, add-on modules, or customizations help be the change your company needs to stick it out with your existing ERP system? If yes, then go for it! Perhaps it’s been a while since implementation, and you’ve fallen out of good habits and best practices. A little TLC might be all your company needs to get back on track with its ERP system.
If training and upgrades won’t get you to where you want to go then it’s probably time to find a new system. Of course, selecting an ERP system comes with a whole host of other questions to consider before you dive in including cost, functionality, on-premise v. cloud-based to name a few. If this is the right decision for your company then it’s time to put together an ERP search committee and get started.
If you’re still on the fence, it can’t hurt to look around and see what’s out there in terms of a new ERP system. You might find that some other vendors offer functionality that your company can’t live without.
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