10 Tips For Selecting An Erp Software Solution And Keeping Your Job
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ERP software selection has become an art in-and-of-itself. Whether you are a new or seasoned buyer of technology software and services the task of selecting ERP software is complex, time consuming and will have a major impact on the health of your business. At the onset of the process you want to make sure that you are carefully approaching the selection process using a plan and criteria that will lead you down the best path for your organization and company. Many a job has come and gone at the expense of "erp gone bad" and the tips provided here will assist you with developing a selection plan based on industry best practice and years of analysts experience. Each one of the ten tips could be used as a category as part of an overall evaluation framework.
1. Product/Service: The core product features, capabilities and services provided as part of a complete offering. This includes the offerings relevance in the market space as compared to the competition.
2. Company viability: The financial and organizational health of the company and their ability to compete and advance in the market space. This includes their ability to invest in future product development and research.
3. Sales execution and pricing: The ability of the company to successfully demonstrate the features, capabilities and business value of their product and be price competitive.
4. Customer experience: This is where you start to measure what it's like to be a customer of the vendor. How is their technical support? Are they responsive? There is nothing more frustrating than feeling abandoned after a purchase. Especially a really big purchase.
5. Market understanding: The ability of the vendor to be able to listen to the market (customer) needs and translate that into product strategy and features.
6. Product strategy: Vendor's approach towards product development with an emphasis on features, functionality and how the measure against current and future requirements.
7. Vertical industry strategy: Company's ability to align product vision with customer, market and industry needs and trends. The vendor should participate and have a voice within industry user groups and events.
8. Geographic Strategy: Describes how and where the vendor directs available resources to support different aspects of the business. Get an understanding of how they will support you as a customer; whether it is directly or through a channel partner.
9. Track record: The Company's history of delivering successful solutions that produced positive results for its clients. One means of measuring this is through client references.
10. Business model: A rating of the strength of the company's value proposition relevant to the markets they serve.
The ten areas listed above address the most critical aspects you need to evaluate as part of your overall decision making process. Try to incorporate these 'tips' into your overall evaluation framework and plan. They will provide you with a sound basis for determining the best erp system for your company's needs. And hopefully the result will be the selection of an erp system that meets your requirements and is a platform for becoming a high performance organization that leverages technology to support decision making and fuel growth.