Choose an ERP Solution that Easily Connects with Your LOB Applications
The right ERP should connect your line-of-business applications to take your business forward.
Selecting a new enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution is a complex process, during which you must carefully weigh multiple factors to find the solution that’s right for you. We’ve created a 10-point evaluation checklist to guide you through this process, and we’re examining one checklist item weekly over a 10-week period. So far, we’ve covered three items (follow the links to read the full discussions):
ERP Evaluation Checklist
This week, we underscore the importance of picking an ERP solution that integrates easily with other line-of-business (LOB) applications that your organization depends on.
4. Choose an ERP solution that easily connects with your LOB applications
Today’s powerful ERP and other LOB applications, such as customer relationship management (CRM), collaboration, and analytical tools, hold great potential for helping you get more control of operations, streamline business processes and workflows, boost productivity, and gain deeper insight into your business. But if these applications aren’t smoothly integrated, the potential remains untapped. Systems that don’t work together duplicate data entry, miss insights, drive costs up and results down, and squander opportunities. So when you weigh your options, be sure you understand how well your new system will integrate with your other mission-critical systems, and how much effort it will take to get the connection you need.
Some ERP vendors might suggest that you can reduce integration complexity and cost by simplifying the processes you’re integrating. Be careful here. Simplification might help initially, but at the end of the day, your business processes need to support your real business, not a simplified version of it. And you could end up incurring those “saved” IT costs later, if you decide you really need the integration you gave up at the start.
Here’s one final thing to think about: you may want technical assistance in connecting your data and applications. So be sure the vendors you’re considering, or their implementation partners, can be there when you need them, to help connect your systems for end-to-end business process improvement.
An ERP solution from Microsoft simplifies integration
You don't have to choose either powerful, flexible capabilities or streamlined, affordable integration. With Microsoft Dynamics ERP solutions, you can have both. Integrating data sources and applications is easier, even if they’re not built on Microsoft platforms, using web services and the Microsoft .NET Framework. Taking this approach, partners and customers can simplify the integration between their Microsoft Dynamics ERP solutions and their third-party applications.
There’s a good chance your business and employees already use other Microsoft software—Microsoft Office, for example, or Microsoft Dynamics CRM or Microsoft SharePoint Server. Microsoft Dynamics ERP solutions work like and with these products and provide additional interoperability to add even more value for you and your ERP users. And a global community of local Microsoft partners with deep application integration and business expertise, including BroadPoint, is available to help unlock the power of Microsoft technology for you and your business.
Join us next week for part 5 of our blog series, when we’ll look at ease of use in your new ERP solution.
Learn more about Microsoft's suite of ERP solutions, delivered by BroadPoint.
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