Have you decided it’s time to take advantage of the latest features and improvements from an ERP upgrade you’ve heard about? Here are the questions you need to ask before moving your company to the latest version.
How Does a Company Start the Process of an ERP Upgrade?
The most common way is for a site survey to be performed by an ERP implementation partner. An ERP expert with upgrade experience and skill will get a deep understanding of a company’s current installation. After getting the specifics of the basic system, a review of systems and environment is done. This will catalog all the integration and third-party products and discussions will happen with leadership to get a sense of the future of the business. Most of the time, this processes doesn’t take much time at all. Once all that work is done, that will result in a statement of work to start scoping the upgrade plans.
Who Should be Involved in the Preliminary Discussions?
Once a statement of work is complete, it’s time to assemble a team. You’ll absolutely need a senior member of your accounting group and a member of the IT department but ERP systems have changed into more than financial management. Include other senior leaders to key areas of your business as new features resulting from the upgrade might affect their processes.
How Long Will the System be “Down?”
Your implementation partner should first ask the question, “what kind of tolerance does your business have for ERP downtime?” The reality is that there will be some downtime where the system will be totally inaccessible, but there ways to perform the upgrades where the bulk of your company doesn’t experience any interruption. Prior to upgrading, your business should have ample experience with the upgrade within a test environment to run reports and enter transaction details. This way, inconveniences or third-party integration issues will be ironed out and solved before the upgrade takes effect.
Will The Current Hardware and Other Technical Systems Support the Upgrade?
ERP vendor’s websites or implementation partners will be able to give you the specifications. If you have concerns about your current infrastructure, talk with your implementation partner about ways they’ve solved this problem for other companies in the past.
How Bad is it to Run an Unsupported Version of an ERP System?
To understate the severity of operating on an unsupported ERP system: bad.
The grim reality you company faces when you don’t upgrade or migrate to a new system is your data is extremely vulnerable. We live in an age where cyberattacks can lift massive amounts of data outside an organization’s walls without breaking a sweat.
To put it another way, the cost of recovering from a cyberattack puts an ERP upgrade and any incurred downtime to shame.