Your enterprise resource planning (ERP) software needs to stay up-to-date in order to give you the tools needed to run a successful business. With that said, upgrades can also be an intimidating process that can slow business flow and take resources away from their jobs. Here are five steps to help you get through your next upgrade quickly and efficiently.
- How is your ERP?: Before you complete an ERP upgrade, consider whether this upgrade is going to help your business operations or be abandoned in a few months. Don’t upgrade to ERP software that isn’t giving you the results you want today. It may be time to switch to a more comprehensive ERP solution instead.
- Prioritize hardware upgrades: New software sometimes requires new hardware, which can impact your IT budget and upgrade schedule. Find out what new hardware or software licenses are needed for this ERP upgrade, what that cost may be, and in which order they should be installed. You can phase in new hardware and software as your budget and timeframe allows.
- Watch the connections: Make sure that other business software that may be integrated with your ERP can maintain the same integration with the new ERP. It may take additional time to connect other programs to the new ERP, and connections are not always possible.
- Protect your data: Perform a full-scale backup of existing data before making any major changes to software or hardware. Consider archiving old data to improve the speed and efficiency of the ERP software.
- Timing is everything: Schedule meetings with internal staff who may be affected by the upgrade, especially those with other business software that might rely on ERP integration, and with your IT department or software provider that will manage the process. Schedule upgrade activities in phases, building in time to complete a task and test it to make sure it worked or fix it if there are problems. On-premise upgrades may need to be completed during off-peak times so as not to disrupt productivity or customer service. Cloud or off-premise upgrades can often be completed without significant disruption.
Working with your IT department or software provider will make it easier to determine what needs to be done, when, and at what cost. You can anticipate and minimize potential disruptions with a well-thought-out plan. Contact RAM Software Systems for additional guidance and support during your ERP upgrade.
By RAM Software Systems, Epicor ERP partner out of Texas (http://www.ramsys.com/index.php)