If your company's CEOs are convinced that enterprise resources planning (ERP) software can't benefit their business or isn't right for their industry, it's possible to change their perception. It may not be easy, but it's well within reach. Your boss may believe that ERP won't yield appropriate return on investment (ROI), or could have fallen prey to believing some of the most common ERP myths. According to Ramco, the most common misconceptions about ERP include the following:
• ERP is just for impressing customers
• Existing processes are sufficient, so ERP is unnecessary
• ERP doesn't benefit the entire company
• ERP is too expensive for anyone aside from huge corporations
Regardless of their reasoning for avoiding an investment in ERP, there's a good chance that this technology could significantly benefit your company. Here are six data-driven concepts to present to your boss if you're eager to streamline your processes, improve collaboration, and establish transparency.
1. ERP Saves Money
Studies on the ROI of ERP indicate that most companies appreciate a significant fiscal return through productivity gains, centralization of technologies, and overall streamlining. Oracle researchers report that for every dollar invested in ERP, companies have a return of about $7.23, for a 723 percent ROI.
Cloud-based ERP can have an even higher ROI, as many companies are able to save significantly on technology investments with this option. While implementation can be costly, many organizations are quickly able to make up the money invested towards technology selection, project planning, and training expenses.
2. ERP Increases Efficiency
Each process and area of your company that's integrated into your ERP can add to the efficiency gains your company appreciates with this investment. Some organizations are able to be 82 percent more productive, particularly if their ERP is used as a tool for workflow automation. Perhaps most importantly, an ERP implementation forces organizations to assess their existing processes and improve their workflow accordingly.
3. ERP Benefits Your Customers
Even though ERP isn't a typical customer-facing technology, it will have a positive impact on your clients. According to expert Doug Howardell, customer service isn't just about the solutions you offer your clients. It also encompasses product quality, on-time deliveries, and fair pricing. ERP can improve your record in each of these areas.
4. ERP Improves Data Quality
Poor data quality and related issues cost companies billions each year. Case studies indicate that data quality inconsistencies can impact your customers, employees, partners and shareholders. ERP implementation can reduce your need for standalone data quality processes, and eliminate errors associated with quality concerns.
5. ERP Reduces Work-in-Progress
Work-in-progress (WIP) isn't just a key concern for lean manufacturing companies. Employees can lose hours of productive time each week or day when waiting for others to finish projects or share the right data assets. ERP increases transparency, facilitates project management, and improves collaboration. You'll be able to appreciate a remarkable reduction in expensive WIP due to significantly improved oversight of your tasks and projects. Additionally, you can eliminate the expense and time loss associated with manual data-sharing with an ERP system.
6. ERP Offers Intangible Benefits
Many of the benefits of ERP are difficult to measure, but have a significant impact on the enterprise. Academic researchers have found a number of improvements that aren't easily quantifiable:
• Better access to information
• More efficient internal processes
• Consistent high quality of customer service
• Foresight into new markets, acquisitions and products
• Increased adaptability to customer preferences and market changes
While the right IT investments typically have measurable impacts on a company, your business could appreciate a wide array of tangible and intangible benefits from ERP.