After spending several hours analyzing reports extracted from a manufacturing companies legacy ERP system today I want to (re)emphasize that your business system should not be an impediment for your users!
Business users should not have to:
- Contact the IT Department for a Report
- Write or re-write a program to add columns or fields
- View a static copy of your report (i.e. green bar, paper, pdf)
- Wait until the end of the month to get a report emailed to you
- Use a terminal emulator on your iPhone/iPad
I'm sure many users reading this right now are adding more to this list.
Nevertheless, it is easy to see why some of the Top ERP trends are Cloud, Usability and Analytics. Businesses want to be more agile and proactive with their customer driven processes. When looking for new solutions, systems, apps, etc... business owners want to be sold on the business value these tools will bring once implemented or integrated not on the bells and whistles listed in the spec sheets.
So how are cloud, usability and analytics brining value?
"There have been important innovations around Big Data, in-memory cloud platforms and user-oriented design. The old guard is still trying to figure out how to capitalize on those trends without threatening their existing businesses, Startups embracing these trends are having success in disrupting the old regime." - Fred Laluyaux, CEO of Anaplan
"Vendors realize they must make investments to reduce the complexity of ERP and make it more usable for end users. It's not just doing mobile, but making mobile more intuitive. It's not just adding new features but really thinking about making the UI more user friendly," she said. "Nobody is making their ERP decisions based on a long, detailed feature and function checklist anymore; they're really looking for how to get more value out of it." Analytics helps "better focus on key operational indicators and see data in a way that enables them to make decisions that actually impact the business," - Rebecca Wettemann, VP of Research for Nucleus Research
Some more great articles on cloud, usability and analytics and how industries are being reshaped: