ERP for small business

Can Your Small Business Afford an ERP?

Small companies often face a dilemma in deciding how to invest for the greatest return. In pure startup mode, businesses must invest in an operational foundation that will directly build the business.

Decision-making is driven more by gut feel than data and hard facts. These methods may be effective in early phases of the business, but oncepast that crucial startup phase, neglectingto investin appropriate enterprise business systems can significantly hindercontinued growth and profitability.

Hunting for ERP prices online is notoriously difficult. Most top vendors want to speak to their prospects first and give a custom solution and price. That makes sense. But it also makes it very hard for small businesses to get an idea of affordability.

The truth is that there are affordable ERP solutions available for SMBs.  Moreover, proper implementation of such a solution will actually save money in the long run.  Consider how much time, manpower, and pain medication you will save by choosing an ERP solution that will automate many of the tasks your employees currently perform with your mix of unrelated software.  You will also be able to integrate your ERP with your other office software, creating a more streamlined process, reducing the likelihood of serious errors in accounting.

Successful small and medium businesses often find themselves in the unique position of having a tremendous amount of data in a variety of formats without the personnel or resources to effectively process and analyze it.  With the right ERP solution in place, your business will have a better handle on daily functions and also have longer-term analysis and reports that will help your business grow and reach its full potential.

Nothing has a more significant impact on the long-term success or failure of your ERP system than the quality of ERP implementation. Done well, you’re more likely to experience a greater ROI in a lot less time. If the implementation process was poorly executed, you could waste a lot of time and money without ever seeing any advantages. That being said, you need to evaluate the total cost of ownership (TCO) for your chosen ERP. It’s this figure that you need to budget for and to measure your ROI against.

Just as importantly, ERP allows a measure of efficiency and control over your business that is not possible to achieve otherwise. Without ERP, often business is managed through spreadsheets, manual processes and paper, possibly augmented with disparate business applications such as stand-alone accounting software, often based on older closed architectures that limit interoperability.

A well-executed ERP implementation can enable change and provide on-going savings that can help you sustain and grow your business. Not only will you be operating at a competitive disadvantage but you can severely handicap growth and profitability․