Selecting, contracting and implementing business software always is a long-term project. One that is associated with long-term investments. Precisely for this reason, it is important in your selection process to look further than just technology. Before making your final choice, it is important to know the market position of your favourite vendors.
How fast are they growing? How broadly do they distribute their solutions? Are they independent and financially healthy? And are they financially capable of being at the forefront of innovation?
In other words, are they able to survive the next 10 years? After all, what good is the most suitable solution that will no longer be developed further shortly after your go live? Or one that doesn’t even exist anymore?
When selecting a new ERP solution, most organisations tend to focus too much on functions and features – and on the underlying technology. But while the available functionality of course is an important selection criterion, it’s also a good idea to look a bit further ahead.
How well is your vendor able to keep its solution suitable for you over time? Does their earning potential enable them to invest in R&D on a permanent basis? Or to even survive?
Here are a number of relevant questions that can help you measure the continuity outlook of the ERP vendors on your shortlist.
- 1How many companies are actively using the ERP solution at the moment?
- What was the growth of that number over the past 12 months?
- In how many countries around the world do they have customers?
- For how many countries in the world is the ERP solution localized?
- Do they have certified implementation partners in your country or region?
- Do they offer local helpdesk support in your country or region?
- What is the size of their annual R&D budget?
- Do they have a publicly accessible product roadmap?
- Do they offer just ERP? Or an IT platform that includes integrated ERP?
- What were the results in their last financial year?
The answers to these questions will help you to estimate the chance of a bright ERP future with continuous support, renewal and breakthrough innovations.
After all, you don’t buy a new ERP system to use for only a few months, right?