How to become an ERP expert

Source: Internet
Author: User
In ancient Chinese martial arts, martial arts masters both need physical and mental repairs to achieve superior levels. Two physical and mental repairs refer to "one breath of internal training, external training of bones and muscles ". In martial arts, internal strength is the foundation, and exquisite martial arts is its form of expression. In the process of cultivation, only Heaven and Man can cooperate with each other to exert the greatest power of martial arts. When selecting ERP, enterprises also need to carry out "physical and mental repairs", strengthen the management infrastructure internally, and find long-term partners externally to achieve their own ERP.

I. Practice in one breath-enterprises must first cultivate their own foundations

The key to the best martial arts is to study and practice, and the extreme of the internal Kung Fu is to practice "the heart is not chaotic", so as to "externalize the inner ". What does this mean? The inner will not be influenced by the ever-changing external world, but stick to it in the heart. Otherwise, it will be influenced by the complicated society and lose itself.

In the current market where many ERP vendors are located, it is really important to think carefully about how to choose an ERP product that suits your own needs and a trustworthy long-term partner. Therefore, the first step in ERP selection is not to immediately contact and negotiate with software vendors. Instead, they cultivate their own internal skills. In general, enterprise cultivation focuses on four aspects:

1. Understand the current situation and strengthen the management infrastructure

When martial arts cultivate their internal skills, different physical constitution must have different ways of cultivation. Otherwise, they will inevitably become invincible. In the ERP model selection, different enterprise scales have different requirements, and the same enterprise has different requirements for ERP at different stages of development.

The ERP system has become a favorite of all users because of its outstanding performance in data integration, real-time sharing, and data decision-making and analysis. In addition to general requirements, different enterprises have different Personalized Requirements. Therefore, understanding the current situation and exploring Personalized Requirements are an important basis for determining whether a project is launched and determining the ERP system category.

In the selection of ERP products, enterprises must first diagnose the core management problems and contradictions of the enterprise, and then put forward detailed requirements. Secondly, we need to investigate the general industry characteristics of the enterprise, check whether the current management methods and operation methods of the industry and the enterprise are consistent, and whether business process restructuring is required to learn the advantages and management features of the industry. Finally, we need to clearly understand whether the existing management foundation of the enterprise can meet the ERP application conditions. For example, the importance of various data management, data management in any ERP project is the top priority, how to ensure the accuracy of existing data and the effectiveness of future data, enterprises need to have a clear understanding. Otherwise, even if you do not have the basic data, the Enterprise will encounter resistance in the implementation process even if it goes to ERP.

The old saying goes: Everything goes ahead. There are many reasons for ERP failure, for example, frequent changes to the Enterprise Project Team, insufficient implementation personnel capabilities, inadaptability of the implementer to the project, and changes to the demand of the implementer product may lead to ERP project failure. Therefore, for the ERP model selection, the most important thing is to first develop the ERP Model Selection Plan, do not develop the model selection work without rules. Before selecting a model, you must first think about the circumstances in which the project will fail and how to avoid such a problem. If the seeds of failure are laid from the beginning of the model selection, the main risks cannot be effectively avoided during the project implementation process. Project success is a blessing, but failure is normal. Therefore, enterprises should plan these things before selecting ERP: basic standard stage (data/internal control/position)-Process Optimization stage (efficiency/responsibility/result orientation) -Information analysis stage (target/warning/decision-making model ).

Therefore, do not blindly follow the advice of consultants rather than focusing on their own needs. It is vital to sort out the company's internal requirements before selecting a system.

① It can help enterprises select a set of truly appropriate ERP systems. Different ERP systems have different solutions for the same problem. Enterprises only need to clearly describe their own needs, the vendor consultant will propose feasible solutions based on the situation of the enterprise, so that the enterprise can analyze and choose these solutions and find a suitable solution.

② In The Future project implementation process, more targeted. In the follow-up training, implementation, and operation process, both the manufacturer consultant and the enterprise itself can focus on their needs, rather than walking in the desert and getting lost.

③ It can be used as a standard for project evaluation. If all enterprise needs are met and all problems are solved, ERP is the appropriate ERP, and vice versa, it is a failed ERP.
2. Determine the ERP budget scope

Grain and grass are not active. Communicating and determining the budget scope is the basis for determining the ERP model selection. Determine the ERP project budget framework based on its financial status and ERP system service life. It is very important to discuss, confirm, and communicate within the scope of the enterprise's top management. Without consensus and participation, it is easy to select a single price, then the significance of selecting and investing in ERP projects is lost.

In addition to purchasing software and paying for the cost of the implementation consultant, the ERP project also needs to take into account a lot of human resource-related costs, for example, in order to ensure the project progress caused by the addition of people, project overtime, business trips, and a series of other expenses, will cause a lot of pressure on the overall budget cost of the normal operation of the enterprise, this part of mobile fees is also an important factor in the early stage of project budget determination.

3. Stupid birds fly first, push Research

ERP selection focuses on its own process analysis. It is not necessarily necessary to select a large and comprehensive ERP product. The most suitable is the best. It must be analyzed and selected around the operational bottleneck and core issues of the enterprise. Most enterprise IT staff do not have a very good understanding of the principles and application of ERP systems. The only understanding is mostly from books and relatedArticleAt this time, the push research is particularly important. The push research is divided into two aspects:

① Understanding of various ERP software vendors

By studying relevant materials and participating in seminars held by various manufacturers, we can obtain a series of information such as the situation of various ERP manufacturers and the industries in which their software is applicable.

② learn from enterprises in the same industry that have implemented ERP
discover the usage of similar software in the same enterprise from various channels, for example, IT personnel can actively establish communications and communication with IT personnel of similar enterprises through friends or networks. From the actual users, we have a clear understanding of the software and the level of the Implementation company. The level of the implementation consulting company determines to a large extent the fit of the Software Performance and enterprise needs, matching is the key to making full use of software performance services.

4. the establishment and training of the ERP selection group

determined the project budget and internal requirements. It is particularly important to set up an ERP project selection group. ERP is not a technical problem, but a solution to enterprise management problems. Management issues are closely related to senior leaders of enterprises and middle-level leaders of various departments. Therefore, a reasonable selection team should be led by the IT department and a core leading group composed of senior management personnel, responsible for grasping the selection time and methodology to ensure that the selection work is not biased, no delay. The project selection group composed of the persons in charge of the functional departments ensures that the scoring results of different software are conducted by professionals without any deviation.
second, the middle-level managers should participate in and receive training before the selection. This is the best pre-school education method for ERP software. Constantly adjust the psychological expectation to be close to the reality, so there will be no feeling of falling from the cloud in the subsequent implementation. Prior to the selection, training the project team members on basic IT knowledge and skills and expected results will help to form a consensus between the project owner and the leadership on the Overall Ideas and steps of informatization construction as soon as possible, clarify the roles and positive roles that you should assume.
in martial arts, the internal force of martial arts experts is more powerful than moves. However, strong foreign moves can exert more power. Therefore, the battle of life and death also requires external training to achieve strong combat capabilities. In martial arts, Chinese and foreign experts are very exquisite. They are not only a killer, but also a skillful art. There are also differences in the target audience for different foreign recruitment options. Gentle and delicate female and gentle scholars usually use lightweight and flexible moves. The big guy with a burly body and a bold personality, most of them use heavy and heavy boxing techniques.

There are many reasons for Enterprise Informatization failure. From the implementation process, the wrong ERP vendor is the main cause of project failure. Therefore, selecting an appropriate and correct ERP vendor is a necessary condition for enterprises to succeed in their informatization projects. For various reasons, many enterprises do not have a careful understanding of ERP vendors in the ERP model selection process, most of which are just a few moments, coupled with the sales staff of software vendors for the purpose of sales, as a result, many enterprises cannot really understand the actual situation, implementation status and reputation of software vendors.

After an enterprise has developed its own business, it is necessary to screen software vendors one by one. So how to filter it? At present, there are many ERP manufacturers in the market, foreign, domestic, large, small, well-known and mature, tailored, and so on. Dazzled, people do not know how to start. In fact, as long as the enterprise has completed internal work, which of the following options should be the ERP vendor, just like selecting an appropriate external recruitment method, that is, selecting the appropriate software that can meet its own management basis and needs. Generally, selecting a partner is measured in terms of the company's status, product features, R & D capabilities, consultant Implementation Team capabilities, and after-sales service capabilities.

(1) Vendor Selection

Currently, there are many types of ERP software in China, abroad, and different industries. Their design concepts are still different. You can refer to various media information and select several ERP vendors based on your needs to send invitations. The selection of these vendors should be focused, taking into account the scale of the manufacturers, industry reputation, industry characteristics, implementation characteristics, General prices, and so on. Some vendors that apparently do not meet the ERP requirements of the enterprise should not hesitate to remove them, so as to avoid putting too much effort into the scope, which is more than half the effort. Therefore, you can only choose what suits your enterprise's needs, rather than pursuing big, comprehensive, high-tech, or famous sizes. For example, if an enterprise has a small ERP budget, it does not need to contact well-known ERP systems such as SAP and Oracle. If enterprises emphasize industry characteristics, they should focus on ERP systems with industry characteristics.

When selecting an ERP vendor, consider the following factors:

① Brand. ERP model selection is not only to buy a product, but also to select a trustworthy long-term partner, so the brand effect is worth noting. The selection of ERP products of internationally renowned brands can undoubtedly achieve better image effects, but the cost of ERP products of well-known brands is relatively high in the future. The selection of appropriate brands can ensure the best investment efficiency. Therefore, enterprises should choose ERP companies with outstanding reputation, good business performance, strong development strength, and rich implementation experience. In addition, on the basis of understanding the background of the manufacturer, we also need to understand the economic and technical strength of the manufacturer, and evaluate the sustainable development capability of the manufacturer.

② Background of the industry. Even well-known companies at home and abroad, the degree of involvement in various industries is also very shallow, often only in specific industries have advantages. Some vendors have been engaged in ERP software for many years and have accumulated rich experience. Some vendors are transforming from financial software to ERP, his ERP product may have strong functions in the finance module, but it may have weaknesses in other modules. At this time, enterprises should choose based on their own characteristics, not necessarily expensive software. Manufacturers often say that they are "oriented to various industries" and "suitable for all kinds of enterprises". In fact, they say nothing. "How many applications have our software applied by the top enterprises in the same industry" is undoubtedly more convincing. Therefore, it is necessary to conduct an in-depth investigation of the manufacturer's industry background. In addition to vendor introductions, industry market information can be collected through media, conferences, and other channels, or through industry associations and other organizations.
(2) Evaluation of software products

Many enterprises like to watch product function demonstrations during product selection. It cannot be said that this is not a good method, but it is not the best way. Because ERP is a very complex product and a good ERP product, it has experienced many years of research and development, and many practical applications of enterprises, there are complex logical relationships and flexible settings. All functions of the software cannot be displayed one by one based on a few hours or even a few days. If it cannot be displayed, does it prove that this ERP does not have this function? Not necessarily. Several methods for evaluating software products are provided:

① Vendor Survey Report

A good solution is to first let the manufacturer conduct research on each department of the enterprise, understand the problems and needs of each department, and then interview the senior management. After the survey, software vendors will submit a survey report, which lists the problems and requirements of the enterprises found during the survey, and helps the enterprises analyze them, what aspects can be combined with software to help enterprises improve. The survey report is also a means to check whether the manufacturer has industry experience.

② Core functions and industrial application characteristics.

After having a general understanding of ERP, you should also know the core modules of the software during the selection, know what problems it can solve, and what features it has advantages. Second, we need to look at the industrial application of ERP software. Different ERP software are also very different in the specific aspects of the industry. Therefore, when selecting an enterprise, it is necessary to examine the successful application of the selected software in the relevant industry and the management experience of the relevant industry. Currently, many ERP manufacturers are talking about the release of the system, which will greatly reduce the inventory of products, raw materials, and shorten the completion cycle of orders. However, ask how much improvement can be made in the production and operation of an enterprise, and why can these improvements be immediately answered by the ERP vendor, what makes people even more laugh is that a vendor's answer system is running, which naturally reduces.

Finally, many vendors have no in-depth understanding of ERP, but are speculating on the concept. This phenomenon is particularly characteristic of China. Today we have ERP, tomorrow we have ERPII, and the day after tomorrow we have an RTE, a lot of terms, and a bunch of unknown new concepts. Diverse and everything is available, so that the selector is dazzled and cannot start. Therefore, in terms of ERP software, do not blindly pursue the best, or choose immature ERP software because of insufficient funds. Mature ERP software has its own advantages in terms of functions and has different advantages for different industries. Enterprises should fully consider their operating characteristics and performance-to-price ratio.

③ Product demonstration.

Avant-garde features are not necessarily true. You only need to care about the features when selecting a model. The functions of ERP products are varied. Some ERP manufacturers also use the functions that enterprises do not know about new functions to exaggerate the functions of new functions. In the process of scoring ERP vendors, you can add appropriate scores for software with new functions that have practical significance. However, not all new functions are applicable to good functions.

Here, we should remind you not to trust any verbal commitment from the presales consultant of the manufacturer. Many pre-sales consultants often say this in demonstration of functions not available in their ERP systems: This feature has been added to the next version we developed. This is not a problem and can be done, however, in actual implementation, the current situation cannot be implemented. When learning about ERP products, it is best to know the usage of the core functions of the previous version of the latest version. Have the functions of the new version been tested by users and whether there may be many bugs, any commitment to the consultant must be included in the contract.

④ Finally, it is very important to consider product scalability.

In general, in addition to the ERP system, enterprises also involve OA, HR, supply chain, CRM, and some enterprises also involve Product Data Management (PDM. This requires data exchange and Process convergence between different IT systems. Otherwise, we will inevitably say "information islands. Therefore, enterprises must comprehensively consider the interconnection of different IT systems during it planning. Whether the partner has multiple product lines for different fields, whether different product lines can be seamlessly integrated, and whether data exchange is ready, these are important factors to consider when selecting partners. If you can use one product, you can use one product to avoid data integration from different vendors. Otherwise, when there is a problem with Data Interconnection, and each vendor does not have an open standard interface to cooperate with each other, the responsibility of the provider will be unclear, enterprises may fall into a situation where they are kicked as a ball.
(3) The provider's consultancy service capability

If you have no experienced consultants to import any of the best software products, it's just a blank talk. The successful implementation of the project must focus on implementation experience. The "three-product, seven-Implementation" law is widely recognized by ERP applications. Generally, ERP services include implementation and after-sales services, which are equally important. Complex implementation process requires not only the consultant's rich implementation experience for guidance, but also a very good project control method. Project Practice has proved that high-level implementation consultants can significantly shorten the project implementation cycle, enhance project controllability, and be more confident in project success. Low-level consultants are often difficult to organize and coordinate with enterprise project teams, and it is often difficult to have in-depth and substantive exchanges with users' business and management departments on project planning and implementation, the plan is delayed and the system cannot be officially launched.

At the same time, you also need to know whether the implementers of the manufacturer change frequently. Many ERP vendors like to introduce how high their consultants have and how many IT qualification certificates, which is of little significance to users. The implementation consultant of the manufacturer is a key factor affecting the success of the ERP project. Even if the manufacturer has a background in the same industry, but the consultant has changed to a new person, the implementation effect will be greatly reduced.

(4) case studies

The most important thing here is to visit the implementation cases of various ERP vendors. From the current perspective, most users put the previous successful implementation cases of the manufacturer at the top of the selection criteria. This is actually a comprehensive inspection of the product, service, and customer relationship of the manufacturer, it is a very time-saving approach, especially for enterprises in the same industry. The cases to be visited should be limited, including requirements on scale and industry.

The ideal case is that the region is located in the surrounding area of the enterprise, and the size of the region is not much different from that of the enterprise or greater than that of the enterprise. The industry is the same as that of the enterprise. If there are no cases in the same industry, we should also provide similar industry cases, at least there are similarities in the production management process. If there is a user group with high satisfaction, it is the best recognition of the manufacturer's industry background. For enterprises in other industries, even in the case of a gold medal, there must be a question: the production process is different. Can the production management module be used in our company? In addition, during field visits, we should not be superstitious about the perfect demonstration of typical users. Instead, we should examine the data operation and usage of grass-roots personnel in the system. The visit opportunities provided by manufacturers and companies are basically one of the best projects they have completed, from which you can see their level and understand some of their user experiences in the implementation process, provides valuable experience for enterprise implementation in the future.

(5) Finally, consider the price

Of course, price is also a crucial factor. Any enterprise has its own budget. It is very important to compile a reasonable budget. As the saying goes, the excessive pursuit of low prices may be at the cost of losing service quality or even failure.

Therefore, if you want to become a martial arts master of ERP model selection, you must start from these two aspects to select the appropriate ERP for your enterprise: in terms of internal strength, enterprises must build a good management foundation, and trained project team members. After careful evaluation, we select an ERP vendor with strong strengths, mature products, complete product lines, complete services, numerous customers in the same industry, and reasonable prices.


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