Many manufacturers with healthy businesses, strong customer relationships and advanced technology on the plant floor are nonetheless stuck in the past when it comes to their ERP systems. And they may not fully realize the risks of relying on outdated systems to help monitor and manage their materials and finances.
Manufacturers must devote significant time and effort to maintaining on-premises ERP systems. Additionally, even a temporary failure of an on-premises system can disrupt a business in consequential ways. As a result, older ERP systems no longer serve as viable, long-term solutions for manufacturers. Further, as technology companies continue to phase out old products, manufacturers risk losing vital tech support if they continue to put off upgrading. The good news is ERP systems have experienced rapid innovation over the last decade as technology companies invested billions to improve their capabilities. Manufacturers using outdated systems are missing out on advanced capabilities and therefore putting themselves at a competitive disadvantage.
Manufacturing leaders will never be able to realize their growth goals if they remain saddled with outdated technology. Therefore, these leaders need to work proactively to embrace the next era of ERP and position their organizations for a future of success.
Reap the Benefits of the Cloud
Most modern, advanced ERP systems are cloud-based, which allows manufacturers to optimize their deployment of resources and improve operational efficiency.
Manufacturers are constantly looking to do more with less as they seek bottom-line growth, and cloud ERP can help in significant ways. Since updates happen automatically in the cloud, a manufacturer no longer needs to devote significant resources to supporting the system. This allows the company to reassign the employees that spent outsized amounts of time maintaining and troubleshooting an on-premises ERP system to more valuable and customer-focused tasks. Further, advanced tools within these ERP systems enable employees to complete tasks quicker and be more responsive to customer needs. A manufacturer can also more easily expand its business without labor-intensive on-premises technology installations at new locations.
Additionally, these modern ERP systems provide company leaders with immediate access to up-to-date and actionable business insights. Manufacturing executives can use these real-time snapshots of their businesses to be nimbler in their decision-making, more responsive to changing circumstances as they chart company strategy, and more proactive about confronting emerging challenges.
To realize and sustain growth, manufacturers also need to attract top talent — and this is a tougher task than ever before. Manufacturers that continue to rely on outdated technology will only make it harder on themselves. The cutting-edge technology and advanced, user-friendly tools in cloud-based ERP systems will be an asset as manufacturers seek to recruit smart, young employees. For example, advanced ERP systems facilitate mobility so users can access the system on any device, in any location, at any time. This maximizes productivity by providing users ongoing access to critical data. Mobility features will also appeal to the talented prospective employees who use mobile technology on a daily basis.