New technologies are not the only trends that will influence ERP.
Drive ERP- It will come as no surprise to anyone with their eyes on tech trends that the coming decade will see the enterprise resource planning (ERP) world take account of developments in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), open APIs and cloud. But new technologies are not the only trends that will influence ERP.
AI and machine learning is a pairing of technologies whose full potential has yet to be fully realized. In our November 2019 study we found 40 percent of manufacturers planned to implement AI for inventory planning and logistics, and 36 percent for production scheduling and customer relationship management. Overall, 60 percent said they were targeting productivity improvements.
This reveals the scale of appetite for AI and ML because they can uncover fresh, innovative insights that boost the bottom line. Take the example of ‘just-in-time’ manufacturing—particularly relevant given the high-profile shortages of personal protective equipment during the COVID-19 crisis. This is designed to deliver components at the last possible moment to alleviate storage and associated costs.
If an AI is asked to look at just-in-time scheduling it can come up with a whole new approach to the production process, creating new options that can make a real difference and generate significant productivity gain.
APIs Open for Business
Another big trend that is transformational for ERP, is open APIs. Based on open standards and easily made available to developers, open APIs are huge. They allow a wide range of client-side functions to be integrated into systems easily and quickly. They allow development to happen at pace because there are no hidden complexities, and they permit inbound and outbound connections to the digital core with the greatest possible flexibility and speed.
In addition, open APIs make it easy to connect to applications, platforms, services and databases that are external to the core. At IFS we are 100 percent committed to open APIs. They are the foundation of how our front-end works. That’s not changing for us, and we expect to see open APIs gain even more traction across the industry.