Business Technology & Consulting 

ERP stands for Enterprise Resource Planning. ERP software is comprised of powerful and strategic business process management tools that can be used to manage information within an organization. While every company and organization operations today are different, they all face a common challenge: to stay competitive in today’s business environment, they need a dependable and efficient way to store and access information. That’s where ERP systems come into play. ERP systems integrate all aspects of an enterprise into one comprehensive information system that can be accessed by individuals across an entire organization.

 

With effective ERP software in place, business owners and leaders can automate and streamline tedious back-office tasks, help employees become more productive and successful in their roles, and get real-time visibility of their operations.

To succeed in today’s increasingly competitive and complex business environment, you need to put systems in place that allow you to easily streamline, automate, and scale. This resource will put you on the right track toward choosing, implementing, and managing an ERP system at your organization.

Evolution of ERP & Current Trends

The term “ERP” or “Enterprise Resource Planning” was originally coined by an industry analyst, The Gartner Group, in the 1990s. It evolved from MRP, a term that was already well-known in business at that time. MRP stands for both Material Requirements Planning (MRP) and Manufacturing Resource Planning (MRPII). These systems were created back in the 1960s when manufacturing-based companies were looking for ways to improve efficiency and decision-making for production line managers.

In the 1990s, The Gartner Group and other businesses seeking to apply MRP systems to other business types, and desired to expand capabilities and processes to other areas within an organization, and thus ERP as we know it today was born. In its early days of existence, ERP focused on organizing data and streamlining processes that related to back-office areas, such as inventory management, fulfillment, purchasing, human resources, accounting, IT, manufacturing, planning and scheduling, and other related areas.

Later, with the introduction and widespread use of the Internet, ERP was expanded further to include other areas of a business, such as a customer relationship management (CRM), supplier relationship management (SRM) and supply chain management (SCM), human capital management (HCM), business intelligence and e-commerce.

Today, ERP systems integrate into all areas and functions within an organization, with the primary purpose being to help leaders and managers better understand all moving parts of their operations, identify opportunities, and make more informed decisions that will ultimately have an impact on the future success and viability of their businesses.

Despite the use of the word enterprise in the name, ERP systems are used by businesses of all sizes, large and small. There are two primary types of ERP systems being implemented at organizations today, On-Premises and Cloud-Based.

On-Premise ERP: ERP software that is installed locally on your hardware and servers, and managed by your IT staff.

Cloud-Based ERP: ERP software that exists and is managed off-site by your provider.

Primary Benefits of ERP Systems

Why are more businesses of all sizes implementing ERP systems today than ever before? Here are some of the main reasons and benefits why organizations use ERP systems:

  • Provide business leaders with real-time visibility into their operations.

  • Provide business leaders and teams with instant access to their global supply chains.

  • Enable business leaders to identify challenges, uncover opportunities, and make faster decisions that impact different areas of their businesses.

  • Help automate and streamline tedious tasks and redundant processes.

  • Give employees the tools and data they need to be successful.

  • Provide a single point of truth for organizations.

  • Can often be accessed from anywhere (off-site and from mobile devices).

  • Help increase productivity among your team.

  • Make it easier for teams to collaborate with each other, and with third-party vendors.

  • Offer powerful reporting and forecasting tools that you can use to make informed decisions about the future of your business.

  • Keep data secure, and help you ensure that your business continues to operate in compliance with global regulatory laws and guidelines

How To Decide When Your Company Needs ERP

If you’re able to check off most of the items on this list, it’s probably safe to start evaluating ERP software providers and working to allocate the resources needed for deployment:

  • Your team members are spending too much time on tasks you know could be automated and streamlined.

  • You don’t have easy access into the data you need to make informed decisions about your business.

  • You work with vendors and third-party applications across the globe.

  • You have a lot of different software tools and processes that you’ve adopted and implemented for your business over the years, but they are not connected.

  • You don’t know what your inventory levels look like daily.

  • You’re personally spending too much time searching for information, trying to boost productivity and efficiencies, and integrating new tools that are needed to scale. Your teams can’t easily collaborate or share information.

  • You can’t access essential business data and information when you’re off-site.

  • You’re having trouble keeping up with changes in regulatory compliance.

  • You’re finding or addressing problems after it’s too late; in other words, you’re not able to be as proactive as you’d like when it comes to identifying problems that need to be fixed to keep your operations running smoothly.

To build a sustainable, scalable enterprise in today’s business environment, you need to use tools that help you streamline tasks, boost productivity, and leverage data in real-time. The right ERP system can put you on the right track. Ready to make the investment? Read how ERP in place can help your good organization to grow and scale to the extent that you will be thankful on your investment.

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