Part 2 – avoiding the traps and pitfalls
Selecting software for your business can be a minefield. Based on his 25 years’ experience in the industry, and as the third of a series of articles, George Troullis provides his top tips for selecting a new ERP system for your business.
3: Document your requirements
Unless you are blessed with a photographic memory, you will not be able to remember all the answers to all the questions you need to put to the suppliers during the selection phase. Draw up a document which, initially, can be as simple as an A4 sheet with your business’ fundamental requirements (it only takes a couple of hours to compile) and let it grow in detail as you interview various suppliers and pick up all the great ideas that you have.
If you choose to employ an Independent Consultant then they’ll provide this service for a fee, and the document should always be appended to any eventual contract with the chosen supplier’s answers to your questions.
4: Avoid making assumptions about your chosen supplier’s answers to your questions
If this is your first ERP system then make sure you document your requirements as above. If this is a replacement system then document as before but add all of the good features that the existing software has (not doing this is a common point of dissatisfaction with new systems).
Your shortlisted suppliers will obviously want to demonstrate the new functionality that can improve on your current processes, but you should always discuss how the replacement system will change the parts of your business that already work well.
Blue Rock endeavour to make sure that everything is properly documented in their Business Process Review (BPR), which serves as an extensive review of your current setup. It doesn’t matter which industry you’re based in; we want to know that moving forward you end up with a system which encapsulates your great ideas and already successful processes, as well as drawing on our decades of experience.
Next edition… functionality and technology.