ERP Companies' Ecosystem: A Guide Beyond the List of Software

How well do you know about the ERP companies' ecosystem? Selecting an ERP system is more than just software; it's an entire ecosystem filled with experts and specialists. 

We'll go beyond the list of software, guiding you through the selection process and cost considerations. Before that, let’s look at the entire ERP ecosystem that contributes to your successful ERP deployment.

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An overview of the ERP companies' ecosystems

The world of ERP companies goes far beyond the software itself. If you want to ensure a successful implementation, it’s about time to understand the key stakeholders in this ecosystem. Below we will explore the roles of these significant prospects:

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1. ERP Software Vendors

ERP companies like Odoo, Deltek, SAP, and Oracle are the official developers and providers of the core ERP software. They are known for developing and delivering foundational software that integrates core business functions. These functions include finance, accounting, supply chain management, project management or customer relationship management (CRM).

While a strong core platform is necessary, it is only one element of the whole picture. ERP's actual value comes from its customisation and integration capabilities, which necessitate the inclusion of new participants in the ecosystem. This emphasises the need for the other stakeholders in the ERP ecosystem.

2. Implementation Partners & Consultants

Implementation partners or consultants are the key to a successful ERP experience. They serve as trusted advisors, customising the basic ERP platform to effortlessly align with your unique business requirements and processes. For example, Havi Technology is a certified Odoo Partner, which means we have been certified by Odoo for reliable implementation expertise with successful projects.

Furthermore, these partners help build a change management strategy to increase user adoption and reduce opposition to the new system. They can help you optimise your ERP once it has been adopted to maximise its long-term worth. Overall, their responsibilities extend beyond simple settings. They play an important part in:

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Choosing the appropriate implementation partner is critical. Look for partners who have a solid track record in your industry and have used the ERP software you've chosen. Don't be hesitant to ask for references and case studies to see how they have helped similar businesses succeed.

3. Managed Service Providers (MSPs) & Support Teams

Once your ERP system is in place, the journey does not end. Managed Service Providers (MSPs), such as Amazon Web Services or Google Cloud, serve as your system's long-term guardians. Their main services include:

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Do not underestimate the value of your IT support team. They play an important role in delivering daily troubleshooting and user guidance for your ERP system. Strong communication between the MSP and your staff guarantees that your ERP users receive thorough and efficient support.

4. User Groups & Industry Associations

ERP organisations' ecosystems extend beyond vendors and consultants. ERP users benefit from a valuable support network provided by user groups and industry alliances. These networks facilitate knowledge and best practice sharing, or peer-to-peer support. This collaborative environment can be quite useful for detecting issues, learning exciting new features, and staying up-to-date on industry trends relevant to your individual ERP solution.

For instance, if you’re an Odoo user, you can easily access the Odoo Forum. This forum is a thriving community of developers, users, and ERP enthusiasts. It allows all users to log in and raise questions, share tips and stay up-to-date on the latest ERP data.

Read more: A Guide to Construction ERP With Real-World Success Cases

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Odoo Forum

A well-defined selection process that takes notice of your specific business requirements and the whole ERP ecosystem is key to a successful ERP implementation. Here, we'll walk you through crucial aspects to navigate this phase successfully:

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  • Clearly outline your business goals and requirements: Many firms fall into the trap of selecting software, based purely on its features. However, successful implementation requires an in-depth knowledge of your own internal processes and pain points. Conduct detailed internal discussions to identify areas where existing systems are inefficient, and how an ERP may help
  • Evaluate ERP solutions: You must select from a variety of solutions. Consider three key ERP deployment models - cloud-based ERP, on-premises, or hybrid models; and industry focus - manufacturing, construction, or healthcare. Do not drown in the immense amount of alternatives. By selecting important functionalities (such as supply chain or financial management), you can filter down the selection pool to those that are a good fit
  • Evaluate ERP vendors: Some factors to check are the vendor’s experience or track record, implementation methods, post-implementation support, and references and case studies. By weighing these considerations with software features, you can acquire a more complete picture of which vendor would best suit your long-term requirements
  • Select an ERP partner with deep expertise: Your implementation partner supports turning your company requirements into a feasible ERP system. You should consider partners with proven records of successful implementations in your industry. Choosing a partner with industry comprehension, customisation, and implementation expertise will reduce implementation risks and maximise the ROI on your ERP investment.

Remember that selecting the correct ERP solutions is a strategic decision that will have a long-term impact on your business operations. You are welcome to reach our expert for advice and support in improving your business processes and navigating the selection route. Our qualified ERP experts can assist you in identifying your requirements, evaluating solutions, and ensuring a successful deployment.

Read moreERP & CRM Do You Need Them Both & How to Get Started?

Understanding the basic costs beyond the software license

You will encounter not just the initial cost of the software license. Besides the license, your team need to understand the fundamentals of Total Cost of Ownership (TCO). TCO is the sum of all costs that are incurred throughout the system’s lifecycle. Here, we'll introduce the most common expenses that our clients encounter:

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  • Implementation fees: These fees cover the services that your chosen partner offers, which can be configuration, data migration, user training, and go-live support services. Their knowledge is critical, and their services will require additional cost to your initial investment.
  • Ongoing maintenance fees: ERP suppliers usually charge an annual fee for software updates, security updates, and continuous technical support. Write down these recurrent expenses in your long-term budget.
  • Customisation costs: Although the majority of ERP solutions come with basic features, more customisation could be necessary to fit the system to your unique requirements. These expenses will be directly impacted by the level of modification and its complexity.
  • Hardware upgrades: Implementing an ERP system might cause a strain on your current hardware setup. Unexpected costs may arise from upgrading servers or network capacity to manage the increasing workload.
  • Training costs: It's critical to provide your employees with the skills they need to use the new system. The total TCO is influenced by both internal and external training resources

Here’s the list: Our top 5 ERP vendors

Here, we look at the advantages of five of the leading ERP vendors to help you select the solution that best suits your requirements:

  • Odoo: An affordable, customisable open-source solution ideal for startups, small and medium-sized enterprises, and companies looking to optimise their budget.
  • Deltek: Solutions tailored to the AEC, government contracting, and associated industries for professional service organisations.
  • NetSuite ERP (by Oracle): A scalable cloud-based ERP with strong features suitable for companies of all sizes.
  • SAP Software: SAP is ideal for large businesses that are looking for customisable options that can meet their industry requirements.
  • Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central: This best fits companies currently using the Microsft suite of products. The system is best for medium-sized businesses. 

Dive in for more details below:

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1. Odoo

Odoo is an open-source ERP solution that is developed based on a modular structure, accompanying success records with businesses worldwide. It offers a suite of integrated business modules such as CRM, Accounting, Inventory, Manufacturing, Project management, and so on.

Why you should care: The best thing about Odoo is its capability to be an extremely flexible and configurable ERP system. This gives businesses more control over their operations system.

Its modular design and reasonable cost also make it a desirable choice for companies on a tight budget.

2. Deltek

Deltek's area of expertise is industry-specific ERP systems. It mainly fulfils the requirements of professional service companies in the government contracting, engineering, and architecture (AEC) sectors. In particular, Deltek provides many solutions, such as Deltek GovCon for government contractors and Deltek Vantagepoint for AEC companies. various solutions address the unique needs of various industries in terms of project management, resource allocation, and financial needs. 

Why you should care: Their ability to combine extensive industry knowledge into feature-rich solutions that specifically solve the problems faced by professional service organisations is what makes them stand out. Their pre-configured features decrease the need for customisation and guarantee a more seamless installation process.

3. NetSuite ERP

NetSuite ERP is another cloud business management solution that automates core business activities and provides real-time visibility into your operations and finances. A few of its features include financials, inventory control, CRM, and project management.

Why you should care: With great scalability, NetSuite is a great option for businesses of all sizes, from entrepreneurs to enterprises. Its cloud-based deployment helps speed up implementation times and exclude significant upfront hardware investment.

4. SAP Software

As a global leader in ERP, SAP delivers a range of products that can address the pain points of many enterprise-level businesses across industries. In its huge product portfolio, you may have heard about SAP S/4HANA - a cloud-based ERP platform, and SAP Business One for mid-sized businesses.

Why you should care: SAP is a trustworthy vendor for large companies because of its undeniable expertise and global expansion. Its product portfolio is the remedy for giants that are urged to meet their industry requirements.

5. Microsoft Dynamics 365

You probably know Dynamics 365 Business Central (DBC) - the ERP system that is part of the Microsoft suite of cloud-based apps. Its core features include project management, inventory control, and financials. Since the system can easily connect with other Microsoft products, companies that currently use the Microsoft ecosystem may find it to be a good fit.

Why you should care: DBC is an excellent choice for Microsoft users since they are familiar with the user interface and can integrate with Microsoft products. Its cloud-based structure also helps businesses to achieve more scalability and ease of usage.

The final note

With a thorough awareness of the ERP companies' ecosystem and main players, you will be well on your path to choosing the best solution and navigating a successful implementation. ERP selection is more than just selecting software; it is about building a great ERP network for long-term success. As a certified ERP partner, we take pride in our ability to attentively understand your business needs and collaborate with you to craft an implementation strategy that succeeds.

Want to learn how Havi can help you implement the ERP Software?

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