Project Description

How to successfully select your ERP package and partner

ERP selection process

Selecting an ERP system is a crucial process with far-reaching implications. Defining the selection criteria and accurately applying a structured approach are vital. There are various ways to deal with this process that we are happy to explain in more detail.

Selecting a package yourself

Many companies select the ERP package themselves. They look for the most suitable system and partner using the details defined on their organisation’s wish list of basic and individual requirements.

The ‘classic’ approach works like this: the first step is a Request for Information (RFI), which is used to check if the intended system complies with certain requirements and conditions (for instance, production planning, multi-lingual or multi-company). This results in a shortlist of system vendors for further consideration, followed by a demo presentation of the system. A preferred supplier will ultimately emerge as the ‘winner’ and a Request for Proposal is submitted. On average, this entire process takes about eight months.

What we sometimes sense from our perspective at Pulse is a lack of clear, long-term ambition during this process. And that is where the danger lies: many companies actually end up asking for a system that replicates their existing solution. If you ask for what you already have, do not expect anything new. In this case, a new ERP system will not reward you with any tangible innovations or improvements.

Read a case here about how ERR helped a company with clearly defined goals to go to the next level.

erp selectietraject

Selecting with the help of an advisor

Selecting an ERP solution is obviously not something a company does every year, so some companies use the services of an advisor. An advisor can facilitate and ease the entire process from fact-finding up to negotiating the details of the contract and the ultimate choice of ERP system. There are roughly two types of advice:

  1. Advice on the selection process: Longlist, RFI, Shortlist and Demo. The final choice is left up to the company.
  2. 2. Advice on the final selection. The advisor helps the company navigate the selection process and has a say in the final choice of software (and remains on board during implementation).

The mark of a good advisor is always reflected by legitimate questions in the RFI. Irrelevant questions without any added value simply cost time and money. Just think about it: a poorly phrased question has to be considered by around five different parties: the advisor, your team, the directors, the vendors selected to participate in the RFI and other stakeholders at your company expected to give an opinion. That quickly runs into hundreds of euros of wasted time and cash. Per question. And that is not even taking into account who actually pays these costs. In other words: ask specific but only relevant questions.

So what’s best?

If your company is fortunate in having the right people and expertise in-house, performing the selection should be straightforward. If you are uncertain, or prefer to be advised anyway, we can help you find the right advisor.

Help me make a selection