02-06-2014 / By: The Attivo Group, Inc.
One of the hot topics of conversation here at The Attivo Blog is understanding why some ERP projects go over budget and past deadline. While there are a number of reasons why an ERP implementation might under-deliver, one of the common themes that we are constantly mentioning is over customization.
It is important to note that there is no such thing as an out of the box solution that is all things to all companies. No matter what ERP solution you end up choosing, there will need to be some level of customization to fit your personal needs. That said, where a lot of companies go wrong is choosing a software based on reputation and then engage in a series of overly complicated customizations to tailor that solution to their unique requirements.
A recent study done by Gartner shows that these highly customized systems will simply become “legacy” systems by 2016.
What is a Legacy System
When the idea of ERP was first catching on, early adopters often built custom systems that integrated all of their processes under one silo of information. While these systems served their purpose, they were exceedingly difficult to update and change as a company’s business needs evolved. Often times, these systems went many years, if not decades, without being updated or changed at all, and the idea of a legacy system was inadvertently born.
The same concept can be applied to present day ERP systems. The more customizations that are done to a particular software package, the more difficult it becomes to update that software when new product releases become available. Often times, when an update is done, the customizations don’t carry over. Redoing excessive customizations becomes a cost prohibitive barrier to upgrading software, leading to a different kind of legacy system.
How to Avoid aLegacy Anchor
The best way to do this is to do your homework. Don’t pick a system because the new CFO worked with a particular product at previous job or because it is the most popular name on the market. Doing a business process assessment before choosing an ERP system will give you a complete picture of what your exact needs are. You can then choose an ERP system that is the closest fit to those needs, thus minimizing the amount of customization required. Doing this will not only help keep your ERP project on budget and on time, but it will also leave your system agile enough to be updated and adapted as your business needs evolve.
To find out more information about business process assessments you can download this free e-book or call The Attivo Group at 877-428-8486.