RubinBrown (formerly KnowledgePath Consulting)


Is Your ERP System Friend or Foe?

ERP systems burst on the scene about three decades ago. Many companies jumped on the bandwagon in the 1990s. Fast forward to 2020+ and a drastically changed business world…

Looking at your company, does your ERP system work for you, or does your company work in spite of it? In other words, is your ERP helping or hurting your bottom line?

Think of your company as it relates to the following points. It will quickly help you determine which category you fall into:

People Throughout Your Organization Complain About What it Takes to Get Their Job Done

    • Nothing is ever perfect, but are you continually hearing from your employees about the ERP work-arounds or cumbersome things they have to do to get their work done?

Ask Your Managers to Describe a Process Flow and Then Compare That to The Description Provided By the People Actually Doing the Work

    • It is normal to hear slight variations in the way different people think things are done, but this exercise is usually very eye-opening. Managers generally describe the process the way it should work. The problem is that this is not usually how it actually operates.

Ask People Why Something is Being Done a Certain Way and After Continuing to Ask the “Why” Question, You Finally Hear the Real Answer

    • It usually takes asking the same question 5 or 6 times to get to the real answer, and it is surprising how many times the answer ends up being “Because we have always done it that way,” or “Because that is the way the system works”.

Do Your Employees Have Multiple Spreadsheets or Use Manual Processes to Get Their Work Done?

    • Multiple spreadsheets or manual processes are a true sign that your people have to work outside of the system to complete their work.

If you recognized your company in one or more of these points, your ERP system isn’t working the way you are trying to run your organization. It is also a very good bet that if you haven’t gone through a business process optimization or installed a new ERP package in a few years your company has fallen victim to the dreaded “work is getting done in spite of our ERP.”

Changes will be needed to stay competitive, profitable, or even survive. We will address the next steps in upcoming posts, so stay tuned and stay connected with us on LinkedIn.