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Consolidating Infrastructure for Manufacturing Companies—When to Consider a Single ERP Solution

Controlling the growth of operations complexity within a company is challenging, no doubt about it. In fact, it’s among the most challenging issues facing companies today. However, many companies continue to use individual software applications to fix critical business issues instead of an integrated solution – complicating the operations structure even more.

Poor integration of such applications can derail a company. IT system costs and complexity can grow beyond what is required, and data-driven decision-making can be limited. More importantly, poor integration prevents you from adapting to the rapid shifts in business and technology that drive today’s industries.

That’s bad news for manufacturers who are serious about growing their businesses. Often, it’s better to consolidate multiple software applications into a single, unified Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system. Consolidation simplifies and streamlines operations, helping a business to leverage critical data, and address strategic technology issues both quickly and easily. You must consider software applications consolidation as a growing strategy.

Unfortunately, there’s no single factor that tells you when it’s time to consolidate individual applications into one ERP system. The decision to do that is different for every company, no matter what the issue. So, how do you know when to consolidate your infrastructure? You look for tell-tale signs.

Consolidating Software Applications is a Growing Strategy

Adopting a single ERP as the core of your IT solution is a growing strategy among manufacturers. As top buyers and ERP users, manufacturers embraced resource planning systems – the predecessor of modern ERP software solutions – decades ago. Why? Because it works well across industries.

Research shows ERP improves business processes for 95% of companies. That’s impressive, no matter how you look at it. While you may incur some upfront costs and see a downturn in productivity initially, the benefits of ERP consolidation far outweigh the costs.

Below are seven critical benefits of ERP system consolidation:

  1. Provides a simplified user experience
  2. Boosts efficiency and productivity
  3. Transforms business information into actionable insights
  4. Simplifies auditing trails
  5. Lowers total cost of ownership
  6. Cuts software license and maintenance costs
  7. Enhances corporate risk management

Consolidating your IT infrastructure into an ERP solution isn’t just about reducing the number of applications you use. Nor is it about running one system for corporate financials and another for business functions.

It’s about understanding how consolidation leads to integrated, data-driven decision making, and ultimately, business goals. If that doesn’t happen, you won’t reap the benefits.

Tell-Tale Signs You Need an ERP Software Solution

The widespread growth of ERP consolidation among manufacturers indicates just how critical it is for today’s companies. The insights obtained by analyzing the interconnected information will boost both performance and productivity. But how do you know when it’s time to consolidate ERP systems?

The timing is different for every company, but here are seven tell-tale signs that you need to consolidate:

7 tell tale signs that software applications consolidation is a growing strategy

Once you decide to consolidate ERP systems, you need to determine and prioritize your business requirements, pinpoint your technology weakness, and assess your existing IT inventory. Doing so helps you build an ERP consolidation plan by determining your status in four key areas: overall costs, technological and expertise requirements, business process change management, and digital transformation change management.

Creating a digital transformation plan is critical to success. It tells you what concrete steps you need to take to consolidate your current systems and applications into a centralized ERP solution. In addition, it tells you how the system will impact you in the long run, the level of IT support you’ll need to consolidate, and if you’ll need external help to implement your plan.

Consolidating to an ERP Solution Delivers Results

Controlling the growth of operations complexity within a company is challenging, especially for manufacturers. It’s common to add individual software systems and applications to address critical business issues. However, poor integration of these solutions hampers efficiency, inhibits data-driven decision making, increases costs, and slows business growth.

ERP consolidation, however, can help you defeat operations complexity. It provides a wide range of benefits, such as optimizing complex business processes, mitigating technology integration challenges and creating a better user experience, far outweighing its costs. If you’re a manufacturer looking to drive double-digit growth, consolidating ERP systems may be just what the doctor ordered.

TDT Consultants provides a customized assessment of IT solutions architecture and digital transformation. We’ll help you determine your existing system’s status and identify what you need to do to install a scalable IT infrastructure, including your costs.

Plus, we’ll help you create a before and after map of your technology inventory so you can decide how to proceed. For more information, or to sign up for our free two-hour assessment session, you can contact us here.

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