When is the Right Time to Upgrade Your Retail ERP System?

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No doubt, your current ERP system was expensive to implement, and the idea of upgrading it or changing it out altogether is not a desirable one. After all, everything is fine just the way it is. More or less.

There comes a time, however, when we all have to face the inevitable: The ERP system is just not up to the task anymore; we have to consider upgrading it.

The following pointers will help you determine whether it’s time to bite the bullet and upgrade your retail ERP system:

Is your ERP version still being supported by the manufacturer/vendor? If not, or if support will be ending within the next year, then consider upgrading for sure. Should a problem surface, having no support for out-of-date hardware and software components can be devastating to your business.

Related to the previous point, does your current system support necessary compliance to laws and standards, such as interstate sales tax, PCI, ISO, EDI, etc., or do you have several proprietary, isolated components strung together? Newer ERP systems have many of these components integrated or integrate seamlessly with third-party modules, reducing the risk of missing data caused by using different interfaces.

Can the system you’re on support new and emerging technologies? Can you support customer loyalty programs, digital coupons, view the inventory of your stores across town, support smartphone features, etc.? If your company is compensating for the shortcomings of your existing platform by working harder to keep up, you are creating more work for your employees with the potential of error.

How well does your current system integrate with Microsoft Office? If your employees have to adjust their workflow just to get data into Excel, chances are you are losing time and money unnecessarily – most new ERP systems come integrated with the ability to generate and read spreadsheets directly, as well as to importing and exporting them seamlessly.

Do your ERP system components integrate seamlessly? Do your Point of Sale devices integrate through to the back office, giving management transparency of the entire transaction? Having visibility throughout the enterprise ensures management can take action sooner rather than later when problems surface. Does your eCommerce portal have access to your company inventory? Providing your employees and your customers with visibility into stock availability ensures consistency across multiple shopping channels as well as accuracy in product availability and inventory management.

There is a dollar value if your employees have to accommodate the deficiencies of your current system to get their work done. And if your company is unable to offer competitive, in-demand benefits because of these deficiencies, you are losing sales. Lastly, if your vendor no longer supports (or will soon end support for) your product, then you are running the risk of being unable to integrate new features or adjust to new industry guidelines.

Consider the cost of holding on to your current system and weigh that against the value of upgrading to a new system that can provide the features you need to be competitive and grow. When holding on to an old system becomes a liability or hinders your ability to compete, it is time to consider upgrading to a new system.

For more information on how an ERP solution from ArcherPoint can benefit your retail business, email [email protected].

by ArcherPoint LLC

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