Perhaps you've read some posts from our blog's Enterprise Resource Planning system selection series, and several other articles published by experts in identifying the right ERP solution for certain business needs, and even more tips from more sources that are familiar to your discipline. And perhaps you're now immersed in more information than you realized was out there when you started looking. But you're diligently combing through it all. Because you don't want to get this wrong. Selecting an ERP system is a big, expensive decision; one that will have ramifications for your business - good or bad - for years to come. And so maybe you've started a spreadsheet that lists all the available benefits of the various ERP options you're finding, and you're categorizing those items and prioritizing the ones that your company needs most from a solution. And now you're listing the ERP systems that seem the most appealing so that you can compare them, hoping that you've collected a comprehensive list of features. STOP!!! We already did much of this for you. So here's a handy, customize-able benefit analysis checklist.
Five Categories of Evaluation
The checklist is designed to reduce confusion by laying out available benefits in five categories via a clean, easy-to-read format. It allows you to compare up to three vendors at a time (if you have more than that, you might be in an earlier, less detailed stage of the evaluation process) and give weight to the items most valuable to your organization. The five key areas of evaluation are:
- Productivity: How will the solution increase productivity in your organization? For example, depending on your specific needs, you might prioritize an ERP system that allows you to work and print documents in multiple languages, removing the language barrier between you and your customers.
- Functionality: What features does it offer? For instance, you might prioritize an ERP system that interacts seamlessly with your CRM product in a single database.
- Technology: How does the solution leverage and stay up to date with current technologies? One element of consideration here might include the flexibility to move between on premise and cloud deployments, as your needs change and the benefits of the cloud become increasingly prevalent.
- Value: How does the product’s lifetime cost compare to what you’re getting? Depending on current and projected use, here you might prioritize an ERP system that only charges you for the resources you use instead of by user count.
- Risk: How does it minimize risk and facilitate security? Security is, ultimately, a collaboration between users and computers. However, recognizing that problems can and do occur, you might prioritize an ERP system with exceptional backup and disaster recovery capabilities.
ERP selection isn't a decision that should be made lightly. You need to gather together all the information you can in order to make a thoroughly informed decision. What you don't need to do is wade through dozens of separate articles, trying to remember what you’ve read about each system. Download the benefit analysis checklist now and start comparing multiple ERP systems in one, neatly structured document.