Essential ERP Selection Criteria

Published: 4 August 2023

ERP software selection can be a complicated process and an intensive task. Whichever system you choose will be the system through which all your financial planning runs. Choose the wrong software and you risk incurring considerable cost for your business, and frustrating both customers and employees. To mitigate these risks there are a number of key criteria that you should consider when making your decision. 

Top 5 ERP selection criteria 

  • Business Requirements 

Put simply, if the software doesn’t do what you need it to do everything else is irrelevant. The first thing you should do is make a comprehensive list of everything you need from your ERP. Talk to your end users, find out not only what they like and don’t like about their current software, but what processes work and don’t work. Take that list and prioritise into must haves and desirables.  

  • Functionality and ease of use 

Each business department works with a subset of data that is relevant to their role. The experience for each department and user should therefore be customisable, showing them only what they need. E.G., regional departments within international companies will need only regionally specific data. A good ERP system will present the right data to the right people.  

  • Integration 

You will undoubtedly have other systems that you are quite happy with and that serve their purpose. Introducing a new system can be costly so most will want to avoid replacing several unless absolutely necessary. So whichever ERP system you decide will need to read data from and integrate well with your existing systems. Consider what integration tools you need as well as come with the new ERP system.  

  • Budget  

One of the most important criteria for selection of ERP systems is your budget. You need to consider various factors when looking at your budget, such as modules, integrations, customisations, and third-party solutions. Anything you think you’ll need for the new system. Start with a rough estimate but remember that pricing shouldn’t be the sole deciding factor. Cheaper options may end up costing more if they can’t support your growth in the long run and you need to upgrade again in a few years. 

  • Scalability 

When choosing your software, you need to consider the future of your business as well. Look at how the software aligns with both your current and future business needs. How will it help to facilitate plans for growth? Can it help you to manage more employees, machinery, and facilities? And in the event, you need to downsize, will it allow you to do that as well? 

Summary 

ERP impacts financial planning, customer satisfaction and employee retention. This makes selecting the right solution vital. Key criteria to consider include aligning with business requirements, ensuring functionality and ease of use, seamless integration with existing systems, budget considerations beyond initial costs, and scalability to support future growth and changes. By prioritising these criteria, businesses can make informed decisions and choose an ERP system that meets their specific needs and sets them up for long-term success. 

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