Three tips for getting more out of your ERP in 2017

It is the time to be making New Year’s Resolutions. Why not make ones for your enterprise software as well? Get started with these handy ERP tips:

ERP tip 1: train your users

Whether you have five users or 50,000, training can help get more from your ERP. Most of us learned how to get our work done some time ago and continue doing it that way. Audit all your users to see what they do and how they use ERP now. Then find out how to help the users do their jobs better.  Maybe a quick e-learning session will help take a couple of seconds away from many daily transactions.  What if some minor upgrade to your ERP last year opened up an improvement that no one has yet found and began using?

Consider developing some workflows in ERP to simplify a series of transactions and avoid errors. Your ERP supports workflows so use that capability. Develop the new process invest in ERP training so that users can do their jobs more efficiently.

ERP tip 2: assign one or more ERP superusers

You probably had people you called 'ERP superusers' during your ERP implementation. How long ago was that?? Ask some users in each functional area to become higher-level experts. Open up security so they can see and try out features they might not know exists in your ERP. Offer to send them on ERP training courses to learn how features designed into their ERP were intended to work.  Allow them to become experts.

Get more tips for a successful ERP implementation using our step-by-step ERP implementation guide

Now, make it part of their jobs to get to know other users in their department and how those users use ERP.  Their real contributions will come when they take new learning and change the way people work at various jobs.  These super users are not IT personnel – they are production planners and sales people.  Likely now no one really knows what your current ERP can do and there are process improvements that can be put into place almost immediately and at little or no cost.  What is keeping you back?

ERP tip 3: look carefully at what you are measuring

We all, from top to bottom in any organization, do best at what our leaders measure. What if one or more of your current KPIs measure something that is no longer needed? People will try to do well at the wrong things and overall performance is diminished. Consider whether your goals are congruent. If you pay sales people commission on gross revenue but your goal is gross margin, you might be under achieving. Think about using Corporate Performance Management tools beyond your financial statements. Your accountants know CPM; some ERP systems now are building these tools into their BI modules.

These few ideas should help and they might all be available at little or no cost right away.  How will they help you in your organization?

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Tom Miller

About the author…

Tom completed implementations of Epicor, SAP, QAD, and Micro MRP. He works as a logistics and supply chain manager and he always looks for processes to improve. He lives near San Francisco Bay in California and can be found on the water in his kayak or on the road riding his motorcycle. Contact Tom at customerteam@erpfocus.com.

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Tom Miller