Thinking of investing in ERP software, but not sure where to start?
“The time it takes to implement an ERP system all depends on the time, energy and resources you’re willing to commit to it.”
It can be a daunting prospect, so it’s a good idea to find out as much as you can before you start searching for a provider. If you’d like to find out more without feeling like an idiot, you’re in the right place. At Verde, we’re ERP experts, but we know that it can be hard to understand. These are the most common ERP start-up questions we get asked:
1: What is ERP, exactly?
This is a biggie. Many people have heard the term ‘ERP’ but are unsure about the specifics. In short, ERP is business management software that integrates and automates business functions.
ERP software is usually a suite of integrated applications or modules that can be configured to suit your business. These are used to collect, store, manage and interpret data from different parts of your business, including operations, planning, HR, payroll and finance.
You should be able to access your core processes and data through a single dashboard. This means information can be shared accurately between your various departments, improving efficiency and reducing wasted time – no more entering the same data two or three times. It’s all about helping your business do what it does, but better.
Find out more about the basics of ERP here.
2: Am I big enough to need ERP?
It’s not really about size, it’s about complexity. Of course, if you’re running a home business with two employees, you probably don’t need an ERP solution, but medium to large businesses definitely benefit.
We have clients with 50 staff and clients with 4000, clients who turn over 5 million a year and clients turning over a billion. If you’re managing hundreds, to hundreds of thousands, of products across multiple locations, or dealing with complicated reporting and invoicing, an ERP solution could make a big difference. And if you’re small at the moment, but aiming to grow, an ERP system can help you get there a lot faster.
Read the seven signs you’re ready for ERP here.
3: How much will I need to spend?
Of course everyone wants to know this before they start, but it’s a tricky one to answer. Greentree, and most ERP systems, aren’t simple, self-contained products. You choose from a wide range of modules, to build a solution that stretches across your entire organization and is configured to match your specific business needs.
Your requirements, the size of your business, and the complexity of your operations determines the price. At Verde, we pride ourselves on understanding our customers’ needs and being able to provide them them with a solution that most of the time is available straight out of the box.
And because Greentree is both modular and fully integrated, it is designed to expand and grow with you; while you might start with just the core functionality adding on additional capability when you’re ready for it is seamless and really easy.
Greentree also gives you very real choice in terms of your licensing options (perpetual or subscription) and how your system is hosted (on premise or in the Cloud). You decide what best meets the staffing resources and technical infrastructure you have available. What you spend comes down to a discussion about what you’re wanting to achieve, while factoring in the resources and infrastructure you can make available.
4: What’s the ROI?
With any investment, measuring your ROI comes down to what you’re looking for. ERP software is no different. Before you start, you and your team need to define specific success criteria. Every business will have different expectations and different measures of success.
It’s up to you to decide what success looks like for your business. Sales? Total turnover? Reduced errors? Fewer customer complaints? Order speed? With an ERP system, you should be able to easily measure your KPIs once they’ve been defined and identify the road blocks that are preventing you from achieving them.
Our case studies talk for themselves in terms of KPIs being achieved and clearly defined ROI.
5: How long does it take to get started?
The time it takes to implement an ERP system all depends on the time, energy and resources you’re willing to commit to it.
Generally, if you’re keen to get started quickly, and willing to dedicate a chunk of time to getting it done, it’s technically possible to get going in as little as three weeks. But if you’re wanting to separate out your different business areas and stagger implementation across them, then you’re typically looking at 3-6 months of lapsed time.
Again, it’s about your business’s needs and limitations. If you’re working towards an external deadline, like a sale or merger, we can design an implementation to fit. Or if you’re faced with a crisis situation, such as your existing system suffering a total melt down, it’s a case of getting the basics up and running as fast as possible so that cash flow and customers aren’t negatively impacted.