It is a mistake to assume that ERP is a one size fits all affair. Many enterprise resource planning systems are undoubtedly for enterprises. For small to medium sized businesses (SMB), these voluminous ERP systems will only cost them more money than they ever wanted to spend and likely not produce the positive results they expected.
For the above-mentioned reason and many others, many ERP vendors have spent a great deal of effort to create ERP systems that cater to midmarket companies. Not long ago, SearchManufacturingERP.com interviewed Forrester analyst China Martens about midmarket ERP software.
According to Martens, midmarket companies are those with 100 to 999 employees. Although revenue is not the standard measuring stick, companies that cross the $1 billion threshold automatically earn the designation "enterprise" rather than "midmarket".
Midmarket companies are often spread across multiple countries, with full service operations in several locations. That means each operation needs its own localization features, multiple currencies, and multilingual capabilities. Midmarket ERP needs to meet those demands.
In midmarket manufacturing, Martens explains, businesses should ask “Will this be the right fit for my business today and tomorrow to support the business as it grows, as it changes?” An ERP system must be stable enough to give you what you need, now but also flexible enough to adapt as your business changes and grows.
Martens then addressed some of the questions many people have about the move to the cloud. ERP, she said, is moving much more slowly to the cloud than other business software, such as CRM. That is largely because many companies with ERP systems do not yet feel comfortable moving everything to the cloud.
Businesses tend to customize their ERP systems more than other software, and there is a general apprehension about the lack of customizable features in cloud ERP. Ultimately, Martens says, vendors will need to realize that there are benefits to a hybrid approach, mixing cloud and on-premise software, when it comes to ERP.
Download The ERP Software Blog's popular white paper, "35 Questions Every CFO Needs to Ask about Cloud ERP Software" to learn more about the potential benefits and risks of ERP/Accounting Software on premises versus in the cloud.