erp and 4th industrial revolution

Don’t implement New ERP: Let it mature Industry 4.0

Are you planning to implement a new ERP? just read this article.

You might have an old ERP system that’s being sunset, or you don’t have the right skill set to support it anymore maybe you’ve outgrown its capabilities and you need something new to help you scale for growth.

Here you might think that move to a new ERP is only the choice, cloud-based ERP technologies are relatively new and are not yet fully mature. The major focus of ERP Vendors has been improving technology than improving the functionalities and focusing on innovation and how it fits the need of the Organization.

Most of the ERPs working on these new like Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), Predictive analytics which are great innovative capabilities that could someday help us while we are moving to the 4th Industrial revolution, but still the question is whether it is fit for use or not?

It will take at least a decade for ERP Vendors to realize the business benefits of Industry 4.0 and that they need to equip ERPs with innovative technologies. That is why we don’t necessarily need to be the first to adopt these and become an experiment for the ERP vendors.

ERP Vendors like Oracle, Microsoft, and SAP are themselves facing problems due to a shortage of skillsets.

Vendors are also forcing customers to move to the cloud as a SAAS model, which is a big question mark when it comes to data ownership. Moving to the cloud will give long-term benefits to ERP Vendors. And expensive to the customers in long run.

It is not above moving to the cloud, I am mainly talking about the SAAS model. However, you can still have PAAS and have Complete ERP Suite on your cloud platform to take full ownership and advantage. On the other hand ROI on such investments is also unproven.

When moving to a new ERP system, while doing the Evaluation, ensure that ERP is the best fit for your business function and there are not many gaps in what you need and what ERP offers. Even if you move forward with ERP Implementation, still be aware of the dark side and the downsides of these implementations,  it imposes a risk to your organization and you need to know how to mitigate those risks.

Most companies that I work with have not fully taken advantage of the capabilities of the technology

They still have broken business processes in many cases they have workarounds and manual processes that they don’t need to have. And it is not that the software doesn’t work or doesn’t enable those in potential improvements but it’s that they just haven’t taken the time to get those processes in line with the technology and to standardize and make those processes more efficient.

The first thing you can do is look at how could we standardize our business processes and improve our processes across the board the second thing is to look at how you’re organized as an organization.

Instead of changing the technology, you can take the below steps.

First, Clearly defined roles and responsibilities, there are opportunities to reassign work. This will help to redesign the organization to make the organization more effective,  all without changing the technology.

Another thing we can do is to look at our organizational design our organizational change management and look for ways to get more out of our people.

We already have spoken of getting more from your people in what you already have we can also retrain our employees a lot of times the technology capability is there but people are using it we just need to retrain them and provide them the opportunity to leverage more out of the system so that we can get more out of the system and increase the ROI without necessarily increasing the cost.

Moreover, organizations have already invested heavily in previous ERP and licensing, if the technology is just sitting idle the cost is sunk. There is a need to leverage the technology fully. Those modules where the company has already paid for the licenses, companies must take the advantage of those modules which are just ignored because of certain reasons.

The old system in such cases is still new as the functionality has never been used. Therefore, just start using what you’ve already got and turn on those modules and take some of that shelf wear off the shelf and actually put it into production and into use so you can get more value.

Sometimes going for ONE BIG ERP is not a perfect solution, there cloud is another choice of integrating other modules like if you need a Warehouse Management System, Use existing capabilities of EPR and integrate WMS to it.

Similarly, if reporting module is old style and not the new Dashboard, then integrate the Business Intelligence System like Tableau and PowerBI. In my opinion, plug the new systems into the existing environment at a lower cost and lower risk, and potentially a higher ROI.

It is fact that every organization is unique and every organization has unique processes to fit its business needs. You can always ask for outside independence to either stick with your current system or implement a new system or do some hybrid solution we just help you have the right solution.

New ERP as a Digital Strategy

ERP Implementation is the digital strategy of the Organization. Have your goals defined and make sure you have listed the success criteria and that is why you need to implement the EPR.

Finally, there has not been any major change in ERP in terms of functionality for many years, the major function of ERP is to capture the data from across all the departments in a single database, if your ERP is still able to do it then don’t go for the change.  Your business processes are already in place and enterprise workflow is already automated using ERP then stick to the technology until Industry 4.0 related technologies are fully evolved.

You can still take advantage of Industry 4.0 related technologies by integrating them into the existing environment.  I have been using PowerBI as a business intelligence system for the organization who are using old EPR but have accumulated rich data to analyze existing and to see the business insight on real-time.

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