You’ve explored the world of ERP and one thing is clear to you: ERP is the future and a great option for your business. As a next step, you will probably need to choose an ERP vendor who will be a partner in this endeavor helping you to select and implement your ERP solution. How can you find the right partner, however, and not one who may work against you in the process? Let’s discuss the ERP partner selection process.
Why Choosing the Right ERP Vendor Matters?
Why is ERP vendor selection high stakes? For one, investing in ERP means establishing a long-term partnership with a vendor. The company you select will be your partner for years to come. Without the right partner, this scenario can be complex and difficult, to put it mildly. Also, ERP can create transformational change at a company when implemented effectively. When implementation is less than efficient? You end up with a huge drain on your time and on your bottom line.
How to Choose an ERP Vendor?
During ERP partner selection, there are several characteristics you’ll want to see in a potential ERP partner. Have in-depth discussions about the following as you proceed through the selection process:
How can you vet this? Ask questions. Do your research. Assemble a team in house that will take part in the ERP partner selection process and the eventual implementation. This gives you the diversity of perspectives you need to make the right choice and determine whether your ERP vendor is as clever as they say they are.
ERP implementation is not something the inexperienced should do. Look for an ERP vendor with history and experience in the field. Ask for references from previous clients or case studies on prior implementations. You can also use this detailed interview checklist to determine the true nature of a vendor’s experience.
You don’t want an ERP vendor who will leave you high and dry, lacking ongoing support and maintenance of your system. Make sure that you ask about their ongoing support during the ERP partner selection process and establish clear parameters of what their role will be well into the future.
An ERP solution that is one-size-fits-all may be the right option for some, but it can hold other companies back. Discuss what customizations you have available to you when vetting an ERP vendor. Don’t let yourself wind up in a scenario where your ERP solution can’t scale with you as you grow or move into other markets.
Positive Business Culture
What does your ERP partner value as a company? Does their company culture align with yours? Again, having an open dialogue and asking questions is the best way to determine whether your two companies can work together in the long term. Establish clear parameters, too, for your working relationship.
Don’t get stuck with the wrong ERP partner. Ask all questions you need and look for an ERP vendor with extensive experience and knowledge in your space. What have your experiences been during ERP partner selection? Let us know in the comments below. To learn more about selecting the right partner, read our guide to ERP partner selection.