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Emerging Trends in ERP Software for Growing Industrial Companies

Posted by Scott Breitman on Jun 25, 2021 12:00:00 PM


Just a couple of decades ago, many businesses viewed ERP (enterprise resource planning) software as helpful but unessential. Somehow, companies found ways to manage supply chains and manage risk without much help from real-time data analytics. It certainly helped that competitors also struggled without insights from ERP software.

Today, industrial companies cannot compete without ERP software that guides their decision-making processes. A company using manual practices against a company with digital ERP solutions would have about as much chance at winning as someone sending a letter instead of an email. The email will always reach its destination first. The digital process works so much better that it isn’t really a competition. You know the conclusion before you even think about testing your options.

Even if you invested in ERP software a few years ago, that doesn’t mean you have all the features you need to thrive today. In this article, we'll explore emerging trends in ERP software that can help growing industrial companies.

Critical Components Industrial Businesses Need from ERP Software

When you compare software, you should find critical features that help your business:
  • Collect data from multiple sources.
  • Analyze diverse data types to help you streamline business processes.
  • Integrate with other systems your business relies on, such as your customer relationship management (CRM) software.
  • Track financial data to ensure accurate accounting and payroll.
  • Manage supply chains to improve efficiency and anticipate potential disruptions.
In other words, ERP software makes it easier for you to evaluate your business processes, locate opportunities for improvement, and turn your organization into a better version of itself.

Emerging Capabilities Adding Value to ERP Systems

Like other forms of technology, ERP systems are evolving to keep up with business needs. Emerging technologies can feel a bit intimidating when you explore your options. However, the following features have become important enough that you can expect stability. They’re relatively new, but you do not have to worry about them falling apart on you at the worst possible moment.

Integration Architecture

The best ERP systems will integrate with much more than your CRM solution. Improved integration architecture makes it easier for you to integrate your ERP with:
  • ETL (Extract, Transform, Load) platforms that give you more control over data.
  • Legacy systems that some of your departments still use.
  • E-commerce solutions that communicate supply and demand needs.
  • Shipping and GPS that lets ERP systems track shipments as they move toward their destinations.

No ERP solution can integrate with every app. You can avoid that problem by choosing one with strong API management features. With API, you can connect practically any app to your system — but you might need to get assistance from software that generates and manages API.

Real-Time Data Collection

Real-time data collection can't afford to cut corners. Any ERP that claims to collect data in real time needs the ability to connect with mobile devices and sensors so you can get a steady stream of information.
Some advantages of truly real-time data collection include:
  • Optimizing every step of your business and industrial processes.
  • Recognizing issues as soon as they start to cause problems.
  • Testing potential improvements so you can compare results immediately.
Your organization needs to store and access older data. Real-time data collection and analytics, however, are becoming increasingly critical in a world that expects efficiency.

Cloud-Based Software

Moving software and data to the cloud worries some companies, especially when they must follow strict privacy guidelines. Compliance has become much easier, though, as major cloud service providers improve their encryption. In fact, you might even get better security by moving your data to the cloud.
Cloud-based software also helps ensure that you can access your ERP tools from anywhere with an internet connection. You can fiddle with analytic settings while your kids watch a movie or take a deep dive into project management standards on a night when you can’t get to sleep.

Industry-Focused Analytics

Everything from successful project management to accounting relies on data analytics. You aren't necessarily limited to generic tools, though. Some ERP solutions have analytics designed for specific industries.
Even if ERP software doesn’t come loaded with industry-specific analytics, it should let you create metrics that matter to your business. That way, oil processing companies can keep track of how much oil they refine per hour while car manufacturers can estimate the number of vehicles they build per shift.

Key Advantages Business Owners Should Look for When Comparing ERP Solutions

When you compare ERP solutions, ask yourself the following questions to help ensure you get key advantages that will move your business forward:
  • Does this software serve as a common repository for all of my critical data?
  • How much training will it take for managers to adjust analytics and generate reports?
  • Does the ERP integrate with my existing IT assets?
  • How much will the ERP cost, and will I get an ROI that makes the expense worth it?
  • What features would help my business become more efficient and effective?

Improve Your Business Technology with Help from Dymin

You might not have the expertise to answer all of these questions. That’s perfectly fine. It’s practically impossible for one person to know everything about a business’s operations and what features ERPs offer.

Get help with making informed business IT decisions by getting in touch with Dymin. We can help you explore hardware, software, and services that match your unique needs.


Image Credit: Photo by Chris Liverani on Unsplash

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Topics: risk management, supply chain, business processes, compliance, integration, ERP software, enterprise resource planning, enterprise performance management, project management, analytics, real-time data

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