Friday, 02 September 2016 00:00

Key Steps for Selecting the Right ERP Software

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Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software offers the benefits of streamlined and integrated business processes, lower cost of operation, improved reporting capabilities, data security and increased productivity. With multiple benefits brought about by an efficient ERP system, the process of selecting the right system that can help support your organization’s needs can at times be daunting.

To help increase the odds of choosing the right ERP software, below is an ERP selection tip sheet that outlines key steps for selecting the right ERP software.

1. Know and prioritize your software requirements

  • Start by identifying what challenges you want to solve and what your current system is unable to do for you. It’s best to divide the list into features that are must-haves and nice-to-haves. The more specific you can be about your software requirements, the better. As an article from Software Advice notes: “by knowing what you need, you’ll be in a better position to control the selection process, rather than let software vendors dictate your needs.”

2. Carefully evaluate your options before deciding on an ERP system

  • It’s important to consult management and key stakeholders and ask them for their input in the evaluation phase. It’s also worth considering how the systems you’ve shortlisted affect integration with your existing office systems, the ERP system’s reporting capabilities and metrics.

3. Build a short list of software vendors

  • Determine which vendors best serve your industry, requirements and budget. Remember that it’s best to list five or fewer vendors and products to evaluate.

4. Closely evaluate live software demos

  • Start by preparing brief demo scripts that detail specific workflows that you want to evaluate in the demo. After each demo, meet with your team to discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the demo and compare notes.

5. Compare prices

  • Once you’ve narrowed down your list of vendors, you can now ask the vendors for a detailed price quote and compare in terms of what vendors will offer with support, training, third-party hardware and pricing models.

6. Get references from vendors

  • Ask the vendor you’ve chosen for a reference that shares a similar business need and size. When talking to the reference, don’t hesitate to ask about challenges that they faced with the system and how the vendor was able to address issues.

7. Decide

  • Given all of the information that you’ve gathered from the process, decide if the vendor and ERP system is the right fit for your organization. Ensure that all the agreements and requirements that must be fulfilled are noted in writing from the vendor.

To learn more about how WebSan Solutions can help in your ERP selection and implementation process, download our free ERP Whitepaper or take our ERP Assessment.

 

Linz Tan, Web Marketing Assistant, WebSan Solutions Inc., a 2014 Ontario Business Achievement Award Winner for Service Excellence

Published in Microsoft Dynamics GP

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Businesses today continue to rapidly change in their needs, particularly, for what an Enterprise Resource Software (ERP) can do to help support their operations and finances. Postmodern ERP, as defined by Gartner is a technology strategy that links and integrates administrative and operational business capabilities with the benefits of vendor-delivered integration to promote flexibility and agility.  

Software Advice, an advisory firm that helps buyers research and choose ERP software, conducted research and sought expert advice to look into the concept of Postmodern ERP and how it affects businesses, with findings compiled in this article.

A comprehensive postmodern ERP strategy aims to use the best applications possible in each business area while still ensuring that the different areas adequately integrate with each other when necessary.

The study is quick to note that “a postmodern ERP system will likely be comprised of applications from two or more vendors, and may include multiple deployment models.” This strategy can benefit businesses by ensuring your company is using the applications which are best suited for each job function. Moreover, should specific applications need to be changed, there would be no need to customize or upgrade the whole system.

Although the study suggests that the postmodern strategy would be best suited to growing midsize to large firms, organizations “should opt for a strategy that will provide them with long-term agility over short-term operational efficiency.”

WebSan Solutions can help your organization find the right ERP solution that would fit your business needs. Download our ERP whitepaper to learn more. 

 

Linz Tan, Web Marketing Assistant, WebSan Solutions Inc. a 2014 Ontario Business Achievement Award Winner for Service Excellence

Published in Microsoft Dynamics GP

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When selecting a new Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software, one of the first considerations to make is whether to go hosted (on the cloud) or on-premise. Although both types have their advantages and disadvantages, it’s worth taking a closer look and offering points of consideration to make the software selection process less daunting. Software Advice, an advisory firm that helps buyers select ERP software, conducted research to create a comprehensive guide to help buyers determine the best type of software needed for their organization, with findings compiled in this article.

The biggest difference between the two types of systems is cloud-based software is hosted on the vendor’s servers and accessed through a Web browser, while on-premise software is installed locally, on a company’s own computers and servers. Although over time, both systems’ cost tend to converge, cloud-based software is priced under a monthly or annual subscription basis, while on-premise software is usually priced under a one-time perpetual license fee.

Some advantages of cloud-based ERP software include its shorter implementation time, great stability with frequent updates from the vendor and no additional hardware investments. On the other hand, some disadvantages of this type of system are its less customizable functionalities and an organization’s possible less peace of mind that comes with data security being in the vendor’s hands.

On the other end of the spectrum, on-premise ERP systems are known to be more customizable and offer greater control over data. However, the implementation process can take longer and organizations have to pay associated hardware and IT costs. Organizations will find that cloud-based ERP systems are more mobile-friendly compared to their on-premise counterpart. 

It would be in an organization’s best interest to first assess its needs, budget and top concerns before deciding on the right type of ERP system that will be the right fit.

WebSan Solutions offers Microsoft Dynamics GP and CRM implementation along with valuable resources like training, free webinars and outstanding support. See how we can help your business meet its ERP needs – download one of our FREE Microsoft Dynamics GP or CRM demos today! 

 

 Linz Tan, Web Marketing Assistant, WebSan Solutions Inc. a 2014 Ontario Business Achievement Award Winner for Service Excellence

Published in WebSan Blog

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The process of selecting an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software is no easy task. With many factors to consider such as cost, vendors, business needs, and the vast software selection in the market, the task of choosing the right ERP software becomes all the more complex. Software Advice, an advisory firm that helps buyers research and choose ERP software, conducted research and sought expert advice to create a comprehensive guide to help buyers through the ERP selection process, with findings compiled in this e-book.

Research shows that 59% of buyers cite data integration as the top reason for purchasing a system, while a staggering 24% of users say their current system lacks adequate support. If you find yourself in the same boat as these buyers, it might be worth investing in a new ERP system.

Below are some tips to help in your ERP software selection process:

1. Assess your business needs and identify must-haves

  • Look into your business needs and identify key issues that need to be resolved with the aid of an ERP software, then form a selection committee comprised of both mission-critical employees and IT staff. This ensures that all voices (of varying departments) will be heard and unique needs will be evaluated.

2. Outline your key requirements

  • After forming the committee, have everyone write up their own “wish list” of issues that they would want to be solved with the help of an ERP software, and specific capabilities they want the new system to have. At the end of the brainstorming session, the committee should have a concrete list of immediate business issues that need to be resolved and a shortlist of features that the new software must have.

3. Create a list of vendors

  • Some factors to consider when creating a shortlist of vendors include: how the vendor targets your industry (or niche), your budget, deployment preferences, must-haves, technical requirements, ERP functional strengths and user-friendliness.

4. Get references from vendors and other reputable sources

  • Once you’ve narrowed down your list of possible vendors, it’s worth gathering references from third-party reviews, people in your industry who are currently using the systems in your shortlist, news articles, and current clients of the vendors who are in the same industry or who use similar ERP modules that you would need.

5. Decide and negotiate

  • Make sure to negotiate for software pricing after you’ve made your selection and ensure that every single promise and requirement fulfillment is noted in writing from the vendor.

To learn more about how WebSan Solutions can help in your ERP selection and implementation process, download our free ERP Whitepaper or take our ERP Assessment.

Click here to download our free ERP whitepaper      Click here to take our free ERP Assessment

 

 Linz Tan, Web Marketing Assistant, WebSan Solutions Inc. a 2014 Ontario Business Achievement Award Winner for Service Excellence

Published in WebSan Blog

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Implementing Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software and projects are no easy tasks. With many moving parts and personnel involved in the mix, the process becomes all the more daunting. To help avoid common pitfalls and offer some considerations, Software Advice, a trusted resource and advisory firm for ERP software buyers, recently conducted an analysis of 22 failed implementation projects and looked into the most common reasons for failure in this e-book.

The e-book notes that ERP implementation failure can often be attributed when one or more of the following key goals are not met:

  • On-time implementation
  • On- or under-budget implementation costs
  • Minimal disruption to business operations
  • Improved organizational efficiency
  • Reduced operating costs
  • Increased sales or revenue

One main takeaway from these is that “ERP implementation rarely fails because of the software itself,” as only 18 percent of the failures included in the study were due to buggy software.

To avoid implementation failure, it’s best if the organization take the time to do due diligence and fully research the ERP system, have personnel, particularly consultants completely understand the client’s needs and have a trusted vendor give you a realistic view of the system’s capabilities.

Implementing an ERP solution takes time, so it’s worthwhile to test drive the software and plan ahead for your IT team to prepare for the implementation and additional customizations and decisions that may need to be made at a later date.

Forrest Burnson, Software Advice’s Market Research Associate puts it best: “Regardless of the platform you select, the principles of a proper implementation remain the same: Know what you need and know what you're buying; get buy-in from all of the relevant stakeholders in your organization; make sure to actively involve your IT team in the implementation and listen to their concerns; understand that the software alone will not fix your business's problems—often your business will have to adapt to the software, not the other way around.”

To learn more about how WebSan Solutions can help your ERP implementation process, download our free ERP Whitepaper or take our ERP Assessment.

Click here to download our free ERP whitepaper      Click here to take our free ERP Assessment

 

 Linz Tan, Web Marketing Assistant, WebSan Solutions Inc. a 2014 Ontario Business Achievement Award Winner for Service Excellence

Published in Microsoft Dynamics GP

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Contemplating the security of your company’s data or server backups may make you want to just keep your head in the clouds. When deciding between going hosted or on-premise for your ERP system, there is much to be considered. However, going hosted offers some crucial benefits that cannot be overlooked. Here are the top three reasons why switching to a hosted ERP system is worth the effort:

1. Security

Going hosted means that you no longer need to worry about the state and security of your data. Your hosting provider’s data center can ensure that data is consistently backed up. You can go about your day knowing that you’ll always have access to your data when you need it.

2. Technical Know-How

Securing your data in the cloud and having a hosting vendor means that you can leave all the technical terms to those who know them best. You no longer have to think of “customizations,” “compliance” or “rebooting” and instead, you can focus on the data at hand and performing your day-to-day tasks.

3. Adaptable

Hosted Dynamics GP caters to all businesses. Whether you’re working for a small company that’s just starting out, a mid-sized company looking to reach new heights, or a large company delivering services across multiple cities, hosted Dynamics GP scales and grows according to your business’ needs.

Click here to find out more about hosted Dynamics GP!

 

 Linz Tan, Web Marketing Assistant, WebSan Solutions Inc. a 2014 Ontario Business Achievement Award Winner for Service Excellence

Published in Microsoft Dynamics GP
Thursday, 07 May 2015 17:59

The Value of an ERP Assessment

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Purchasing ERP software is a major investment for any organization as it is one of the most important technologies used to manage business functions and processes.  For an organization to determine if they are optimizing their ERP software’s capabilities, taking an ERP Assessment will prove to be extremely useful.

An ERP Assessment is used to evaluate the capabilities of an organization’s current ERP system. A valuable ERP Assessment will help determine whether an organization’s team is equipped with the tools and information it needs to function effectively and find out whether or not the organization’s ERP system is meeting the business’s needs.

An ERP Assessment will look into different aspects of the organization, such as system integration, quality of received data, use of Microsoft Excel, budget, and dependence on paper forms and templates.

Understanding how an organization utilizes their ERP system will provide insight into possible opportunities, potential risks, and areas that require improvement.

Take our free ERP Assessment and learn how you can best leverage your ERP software. When you take our free ERP Assessment, you will gain access to our free Dynamics GP and CRM demos and an ERP whitepaper!

Click here to take our free ERP Assessment!

Linz Tan, Web Marketing Assistant, WebSan Solutions Inc. a 2014 Ontario Business Achievement Award Winner for Service Excellence.

Published in Microsoft Dynamics GP

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An Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system helps integrate processes which are essential to a business, including accounting, inventory, order management, human resources, and Customer Relationship Management (CRM). Today, an increasing number of both big and small to mid-sized organizations use ERP software to help streamline processes and information across the organization and integrate these functions into a single, complete system.

Software Advice, a trusted resource and advisory firm for software buyers recently conducted a study that analyzed the purchasing behaviour and implementation concerns of 250 prospective ERP software buyers. The study reveals that 54 percent of current ERP users are dissatisfied with their systems’ integration capabilities—this is one of the main reasons why many are seeking out a new ERP system.

ERP Implementation and Support

The study notes that 24 percent of buyers want to replace their current ERP software due to a lack of technical support. Forrest Burnson, the study’s main researcher, says, "It's critical for firms to carefully assess how capable they are in selecting and implementing a new ERP system. All too often there is a disconnect between a firm's expectations and what the vendor will actually provide in terms of implementation services and continued support. As ERP systems are significant investments, it is wise for prospective buyers to seek the help of a third party consulting firm if they're unable to do all of the due diligence in-house to ensure that the selection and implementation processes go smoothly.”

What WebSan Solutions Can Offer 

Implementing an ERP system that caters to a business’ needs and budget is no easy task. Along with a system that is fully functional, organizations should seek a cost-effective support service to ensure that the system runs smoothly and effectively.

As the study further details, an ERP system has a life cycle of 10 years or more, making it more critical that businesses ensure that their ERP system grows and scales according to their business’ immediate and future needs.

WebSan Solutions offers Microsoft Dynamics GP implementation along with valuable resources like training, free webinars and outstanding support. We believe in offering professional, practical advice that is customized to help businesses achieve long term growth.

See how WebSan Solutions can help your business meet its ERP needs – download our FREE Microsoft Dynamics GP Demo today! 

 Download our FREE Dynamics GP Demo to see the capabilities of Dynamics GP 

 Linz Tan, Web Marketing Assistant, WebSan Solutions Inc. a 2014 Ontario Business Achievement Award Winner for Service Excellence

Published in Microsoft Dynamics GP
Thursday, 29 May 2014 16:57

Benefits of Moving Your ERP to the Cloud

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Several systems are now being integrated with or migrated into the cloud. erp-software-servicesDiscussions regarding media sharing, searching, and collaboration systems will normally note that such forms of systems are on the exterior of the core business of the company. Because of this, it becomes a great idea to move your ERP to the cloud.

Just like any other businesses, you also demand scalability, flexibility, and security. The cloud offers all of these necessities and, what's more, it is really affordable. So, if you still can’t make up your mind on whether you will move your ERP to the cloud or not, the following are the advantages that may help you make the right decision.

Small Initial Investment

Services are given on a pay-as-you-go, subscription basis. This only means that the implementation of the cloud-based ERP system could hugely lessen the initial capital amount of investing within the ERP system. A lot of vendors might also guarantee that they won’t increase costs once you go on with the utilization of the system even the term has already expired.

Prompt Implementation

A cloud ERP solution is hosted and managed by a vendor and so you no longer need to install or set up any software or hardware. A good example of this solution is the newest Microsoft Dynamics GP that is designed to function just the way you want it to.

Free Of Costs On Server Maintenance

By going for a hosted ERP solution, you will no longer need to run your own software and hardware. It provides office space, gets rid of maintenance fees, and alleviates electricity usage.

Ease Of Access Inside The Discrete Environment

With this kind of solution, any authorized individual has easy access to your system through the cloud as long as they are connected to the internet. This enables sharing of information among remote staff across various locations.

Better Integration Through Other Systems

The cloud has been purposefully created for simple interoperability that complements the option for present or future utilization of extra products.

Data Back-Ups

There could be terrible risks of in-house server’s crashing and losing data, but a 3rd party hosted ERP solution comes with redundancy. This simply means that your information will be copied to the minimum of two locations. Hence, if one falls short you still have not lost anything.

Superior Focus On The Core Business

You will do away with wasted time from keeping an in-house server, enabling you to focus on developing your business.

Lesser Staff Needed

You must admit that hiring IT staff could be expensive. Through the use of cloud technology, you will no longer need the assistance of IT staff to manage your server. This means lesser expenses at the end of the day.

Knowing about all these advantages of moving your ERP to the cloud, you must now have a better idea on what to do next. Achieve success for your business with a cloud ERP solution.

WebSan Solutions Inc. is a Microsoft Silver Certified ERP Partner with over a decade of experience in Enterprise software solutions. We provide our clients with reliable business solutions, such as Microsoft Dynamics GP and CRM to help them transform their business.

Published in Microsoft Dynamics GP
Monday, 18 June 2012 09:15

What is an ERP Consultant?

An Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Consultant is either a contract employee or an employee that’s part of a company that is hired to do either of the following: implement, upgrade or support an ERP system.

The main function of the ERP consultant is to help organizations move to ERP software. A successful ERP consultant is able to adjust to a client business process, to determine where ERP systems would be most useful.

ERP Consultants relevant fields of study are information technology, business information systems or management information systems. You have the option of letting a consultant help out with the full implementation of an ERP project, from matching your business requirements with the right software to managing change within the organization as a result of the software.

You know you have a good consultant when he/she is capable of communicating with users at all levels of the organization.

If you are looking for an ERP Consultant, contact WebSan Solutions Inc. we've got the experience and expertise you need to help lead you in the right direction. We ensure your new integrated ERP system will meet all your management, reporting, financial and accounting needs while also helping you to streamline processes and improve your overall business.

By: Natalie Williams, Marketing Coordinator, WebSan Solutions Inc., a Canadian Certified Microsoft Dynamics Partner

Published in WebSan Blog