The Challenge of Making ERP Systems More Configurable

An interesting post that I read on Ventana Research by Robert Kugel.

In the wake of the past year’s usual crop of failed ERP implementations, I’ve read a couple of blogs that bemoan the fact that ERP vr_ERPI_01_implementing_new_capabilities_in_erpsystems are not nearly as user-friendly or intuitive as the mobile apps that everyone loves. I’ve complained about this aspect of ERP, and our research confirms that ERP systems are viewed as cumbersome: Just one in five companies (21%) said it is easy to make changes to ERP systems while one-third (33%) said making changes is difficult or very difficult. Yet as with many such technology topics, addressing the difficulty in working with ERP systems is not as straightforward as one might hope. ERP software vendors must make it easier, less expensive and less risky for customers to adapt the systems they buy to their changing business needs. To do this, vendors must design products to be more configurable. The goal should be that…

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13 Common ERP Mistakes You Should Avoid

Over at ERP Software Blog, has shared an article from about 13 Common ERP Mistakes that we should avoid.

It’s indeed a comprehensive list.

Below are the points, which are elaborated in that article:

  1. Poor Planning
  2. Improper ERP Vendors Vetting
  3. Not understanding / using Key Features
  4. Underestimating Time & Resources Required
  5. Not having right people on team from the start
  6. Not setting priorities
  7. Not investing in training & change management
  8. Underestimating the importance of accurate data
  9. Taking the kitchen sink approach
  10. Not decommissioning legacy applications
  11. Not having an active load testing environment
  12. Ignoring Third-Party support alternatives
  13. Not having a maintenance strategy

And I would like to add one further mistake:

  • Keep on changing requirements in the middle of actual implementation
  • Implementation without a concrete Sign-Off document

I believe the above list pretty much completes the most common mistakes that we might make in an ERP implementation.


The Consumerization of ERP Software – Software Advice

Derek Singleton, at Software Advice, got to have had a short meeting with Christian Pedersen, Microsoft’s General Manager of Enterprise Applications and Services on the topic of how IT consumerization affects Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software in general and what Microsoft’s plans are on it’s own line of products, that is Microsoft Dynamics (GP, AX, NAV, SL & CRM).

Quite an interesting topic, I would say. It’s about the need to change/enhance the ERP experience that would work on par with what we have for our normal day-to-day technological consumption, such as Smartphones, Tablets, etc. It’s all about productivity without affecting a user’s interest and enthusiasm.

Read the article here to learn more: The Consumerization of ERP Software. And those who would like to see the video straightaway, please do so from here:


Moving Dynamics ERP to the Cloud? Avoid the Lightning

Quite an informative and the most relevant post about Cloud ERP environment.

Andrew Snook, Fastpath Inc., explains us why and how to take necessary precaution before deciding on moving our Dynamics ERP on to the cloud.

It’s very important and informative. Must read for all those who have got a serious thought about cloud ERP.

NOTE: For those who are new to this portal; you may have to register yourself on to this site to read the complete post. It’s a member-only site, but the membership is free of cost.


Is Horizontal Accounting Software Dead? – Analyzes Austin Merritt (Software Advise)

Yes to some extent. But certainly not Dead. Austin Merritt, VP Software Adviseexplains it very clearly and the comments that he has received for his post expresses mixed feelings.

In my experience, clients want a Software that always fit their exact requirements. Compromise in their requirements is the sin they would least commit. They can’t be blamed for that. One would always start looking at an Accounting Software from their specific business requirements. Once they are convinced that this ERP fits their process, they start looking at the suppliments this product is going to offer them.

Most of the time, Customer Relationship comes first to their mind. Once we are happy with internal processes and the way we do our business, next comes a question: In spite of having best product to sell and also a vision, why we do not see Customers conversion and sales not going up? That’s when we start looking at a product which will give us clear picture (Past, Present & Future). CRM comes into picture.

Now once we visualise an ERP & CRM for our requirements, we start thinking of keeping these two working in tandem. Once we are clear with that, we start thinking about how to present the entire data inside these two systems meaningfully to arrive at Decisions. Business Intelligence comes into picture. How to collaborate all these things and keep it in one single place? Sharepoint comes into picture.

Clearly, we want an Overall System, that keeps our business safely and soundly and tell us what & how we need to go in future.

Vertical Software is always NOT the solution. We have to think beyond our processes. We have to start thinking something futuristic to keep us in a better position when we overshoot our current requirements. While we do have a core Business Area, we do would like to venture in something added to that. And at that time, we would require a system which handles new business requirements without giving nightmares and/or loses in implementing one.

My option in this case, would be, a Horizontal Accounting Software, with required Customizations to leverage each modules of that ERP to cater for varied in-depth requirements.


Job Graphs – A Very Good Pointer

From MSDynamicsWorld site article, I got to see this Job Graphs for Dynamics GP.

I just felt WOW. This particular site is a very good pointer, though need not be accurate and 100% perfect.

Have a look at it and I am sure you all will be contented.


Clients Hiring Project Manager For Implementation – Pitfalls

This one’s very realistic, Mark. I must admit that I am more than convinced.

Implementation is much more than a Project Management and it certainly requires someone who do not compromise on anything for the Quality & Safety of Project Implementation.

It certainly depends. If a Client could hire a really successful PM for an Implementation, they get more out of that single right move. But they also have to make sure that, that single move should not lead them to more destructive results.

Read Mark’s article here: Realistic Expectations: How to Avoid the Pitfalls of Outside Project Managers for Implementing Microsoft Dynamics GP


ERP Implementation Strategies – Houston Neal

Those who are currently doing or planning implementation(s), a must read article by Houston Neal of Manufacturing Software Advise.

Houston walks us thru’ 3 kinds of ERP Implementation:

1. Big Bang
2. Phase Out
3. Parallel Adoption

I voted for 2nd method, which is Phase Out, due to various practical reasons.

Check out his article, ERP Implementation Strategies – A Guide to ERP Implementation Methodology.

And people, don’t forget to vote your kinda strategy. There is a poll waiting for you.

Very good article, Houston. Precise concepts being told in simple language.