Seven ERP trends to watch out for in 2017

As 2016 has ended, we thought we’d provide some crystal ball gazing when it comes to ERP trends for the year ahead. It’ll be interesting to see how they play out, since they have been brewing over the past year.  Enjoy.

1. Expanded public cloud toolsets

The emergence of cloud-based computing will continue to grow apace. Various public network providers including AWS, Microsoft and HP are beefing up their internal toolsets to accommodate more complex, data-driven systems such as ERP platforms. In the case of AWS specifically, recurrent news from various tech publications offer a number of ERP-compliant enhancements including the advent of consolidated configuration tools, along with more flexible APIs and container wraps, in addition to higher performing utilities, particularly in the case of Linux systems.

2. New focus on ERP system disruption rather than ‘more of the same’

During the last five years, cloud operations have been largely focused on initial mounting and refinement of ERP platforms when it comes to translating legacy on-premise systems to various cloud iterations. Now, however, after concluding this period of ‘newness’, ERP trends will center around disrupting current resources-based thinking, in favor of more innovative and potentially risk-prone variants.

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3. Native security elements grow up

During the last year particularly, security issues have come to the fore in the form of more sophisticated threat vectors. Along with ‘tried and true’ variants such as Denial of Service (DoS) hacks, typically triggered by weak user passwords, new areas of weakness have appeared in the form of a host of leverage points driven by the IoT. The emergence of the ERP trend has largely been caused by more interest in the integration of native security elements at lower and lower levels within the development stack.  

4. ERP Micro-SaaS and the re-emergence of the API

In context of the aforementioned movement toward disruption, go-forward systems are already beginning to leverage the use of targeted niche SaaS applications sometimes referred as micro-SaaS variants. Here, certain functional elements are spun off a central codebase, such as the execution of automated email indexing, and/or consequent processing. On the one hand, this approach reduces a central system’s performance load, while the secondary targeted system provides for enhanced processing in parallel. This concept also utilizes various ‘smart’ APIs that help streamline processes end-to-end.         

5. Rising ERP adoption among SMBs

In the past, small business access to ERP tenets and processes has been largely unobtainable due to various cost and operational complexities. Going forward, however more cloud-based systems providers are offering small business-specific ERPs as the global market continues to mature.

6. The emergence of more internal performance horsepower

As public networks have evolved to offer more integrated toolsets and utility sets, these same platforms have continued to refine various internal management processes that will afford greater understanding of just how internal enterprise performance will apply going forward. This movement will continue accordingly, and concepts of internal data-mining will become the rule rather the exception.

7. ERP UI’s will morph toward socialized ‘work-a-like’ concepts

During the next year more user interfaces will begin to accommodate user preferences based on popular social interfaces rather than legacy systems representing more of a systemic ‘look and feel’. Much of this trend will be driven by mobility or limitations thereof, since regardless of telco-based assertions of larger and larger bandwidth offers, the fact will be that there’s just only so much information to be applied on a 4” screen before a user reaches information saturation and discards the data at hand. Consequently, look for more systems to operate more on the basis of single-field, Twitter-like, UI’s rather than past systems where dense data is provided on a single page.

So, there you go; just some crystal ball gazing for the coming year. We’ll talk again next year and see if we were on the money, or entirely off the road.

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Rick Carlton

About the author…

Rick Carlton dba PRRACEwire, has worked as a tech journalist, writer, researcher, editor and publisher for many years. In addition to his editorial work, Rick has also served as a C-Level executive/consultant for a wide-range of private and public sector U.S. and International companies.

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Rick Carlton