Are you in the market for your business’s first ERP solution? There are many ERP solutions on the market, but they won’t all meet your needs. Some solutions have bare-bones features that small businesses can quickly outgrow. Other solutions have the horsepower to handle business’s tasks in the long term.
Before you choose a solution, make sure it has what it takes to grow with your business. It needs to provide strong platform that will meet all your business’s needs. Here are some of the key characteristics you should look for.
An ERP solution is a long-term investment. The solution will handle all of your business’s data, so you don’t want to be required to switch solutions too often. Transferring your data to a new solution is time consuming. Then, you need to learn how to use the new solution. Repeating that process every couple of years is annoying, and it’s certainly not a good use of time.
To manage your company’s growth, make sure all the business technology you use is scalable. This includes your new ERP solution. Choose a solution that’s designed to scale with companies of all sizes. Solutions should be able to scale from a single-server to multi-server environment as your company grows.
Some areas of your company may grow faster than others. A good solution should be able to scale each area independently to keep up with your needs.
Search Engine Capabilities
Right now, you need to spend time looking for the information you need. You need to dig through filing cabinets, sort through piles of papers, and look through computer folders. An ERP solution without search engine capabilities is just a high-tech version of your current predicament. You’ll spend time digging through the various modules of your ERP platform.
Look for an ERP platform that offers search engine capabilities. When you need to find information, you can simply type in what you’re looking for. Just like a search engine, the platform will index relevant results. This can save a lot of time, especially once your company gets larger.
You might not need a customized ERP solution right now, but you might want it later. As your business grows, you may want to customize the platform’s interface. Or, you may want to create new business process rules.
A scripting engine makes these changes possible. With a scripting engine, the platform can be quickly customized to meet your business’s needs.
Service Integration Framework
At some point, you may want to integrate your ERP solution with the other systems you use for your business. For example, you may want to integrate your retail point-of-sale system or ecommerce platform to your ERP platform. By integrating your various systems, you can manage both the back-end and front-end functions of your business in the same place.
To do this, you need to choose an ERP platform that offers a service integration framework. With this framework, external services can be quickly integrated with the ERP platform.
Business Analytics Engine
If you’re still manually creating all your reports, you know what a hassle it is. You need to manually collect all your business’s data and input it into a spreadsheet. This process will only get more frustrating as your business grows and you have more data to handle.
An ERP platform with a business analytics engine will save you a lot of time through small business automation. This engine gathers analytics automatically, so you don’t need to spend time searching for data. You’ll always have access to real-time data. The platform will quickly create the reports you need with this data, saving you a lot of time.