We all are aware of the fact that Enterprise Resource Planning software unites the organization by bringing every piece of data together. From sales to accounts, production to logistics, it aims to harness the full potential of every department and assures competitiveness across the company.
The very question that springs to the minds of business owners before investing in ERP is whether to opt for a packaged or commercially available ERP (off-the-shelf ) or get a custom-built solution.
Custom ERP providers ensure to build a solution from scratch – keeping in mind the detail of budget, needful resources, timeline, and business needs. Custom-built ERP is built from the ground and in accordance with the system requirements and specific customers. Developing a custom-built ERP is a procedural process that encompasses developing a project plan, creating a blueprint, testing, developing and extending it.
5 Reasons to Upgrade from Custom ERP Software to Off-The-Shelf ERP
Off-the-shelf ERP, also known as a commercially available solution is ready to use, once installed on the systems. These software solutions incorporate agile and best practices. In contradiction to custom-built ERPs, off-the-shelf ERP package is sold to a large number of buyers and therefore, the pricing is almost the same across all the verticals.
Here are 5 reasons why businesses should upgrade from custom ERP software to off-the-shelf ERP –
1. High upfront cost
When you talk about investing in a custom-built ERP software, you need to spend a considerable amount of time and efforts to get it created from scratch. It can be heavy on your pocket. The more functionalities you get customized, the more money you have to pay.
On the other hand, off-the-shelf ERP software is comparatively less costly. Off-the-shelf or commercially available solutions are less expensive at the time of purchase but can charge exorbitant rates in the later stage (while upgrading etc.)
2. Time-consuming process
In custom-built ERP, the development phase may extend for months. While the software developers may try to meet your expectations and build bespoke ERP modules and functionality, it might take several months to touch the go-live date.
This is what makes off-the-shelf ERP more convenient to implement. However, here also, implementation date may vary from a few days to several months – this depends on various factors (no. of members, industry verticals etc.). Off-the-shelf ERPs are ready to be installed, once you buy it.
Once you invest in an ERP, what are your future plans for moving forward? Keeping the unexpected business plans and roadmap in mind, organizations should opt for an ERP that is flexible enough to fit their needs.
Talking about custom-built ERP, if it does not support your business goals and changing strategies, this creates hindrances, which badly affects the bottom-line. Packaged ERP systems are designed to scale according to the growing businesses’ needs and future demands.
4. Poor support services
Custom-built ERP systems are difficult to maintain and update. If in any case, an issue arises, the business owner will have to contact the team to fix it and during this process, your business may face setbacks. It will again lead to higher investment in resources and time.
In the case of off-the-shelf ERP or commercially available ERP, software maintenance is very well taken care of by a certified team of professionals who are designated to fix issues. It guarantees 100% uptime.
5. Inability to leverage advantages of moving to the cloud
Cloud technology has become the lifeblood for modern businesses. It lets you work freely from anywhere you want and offers great security of data. This is one of the basic reasons why cloud ERPs are preferred by businesses.
When you opt for a custom-built ERP, a group of developers create this software and mostly, it is not available on the cloud. On your demand, if they develop a cloud-based solution, it is not tried and tested. Now here, you take the risk! Custom ERP will not have all the cloud capabilities. On the other hand, commercially available or packaged solutions are built on trusted platforms which are globally renowned – are available on-premise as well as on cloud.
Off-the-shelf or Commercially Available ERP Software
Also known as custom-built ERP, out-of-the-box ERP, canned or branded solution, commercially available ERPs are built in advance, according to the experience of a common company. It showcases an integrated set of business management solution which covers functioning of almost every department. Here, the cost of every module and functionality is pre-defined.
Why is Commercially Available Better than Custom-built ERP?
These are the factors why commercially available ERPs are preferable than custom ERP software:
- Low upfront cost
- Scalable and easy to use
- Auto updates by the vendor
- Fully integrated solution
- Less deployment time (built-in implementation methodologies)
- Globally present and recognized ERPs (example- SAP Business One)
Upgrading or not upgrading the solution depends on you!
However, with the packaged solution, you get all the basic business management tools integrated within a single solution – once you buy the software, implementation starts, and it gets up and running within a few weeks.
On the other hand, a custom-built solution is created from scratch. It is a time-consuming process as businesses ask for a creation of multiple modules. Thus, this solution is sometimes not-so-easy to understand and use. Still confused about custom ERP vs branded ERP? Feel free to contact us.