Enterprise software plays a major role in digital transformation. These solutions are designed to automate, simplify, and streamline nearly every business practice at an organization.
However, there comes a point when a company can have too many software solutions. If you’re running dozens of applications just to complete your day-to-day operations, imagine how much time, money, and energy you could be wasting.
ERP software integration is the process of combining disparate applications or sub-systems into a single, unified system. Prioritizing this step can make all the difference in the success rate of your enterprise software project.
Today, we’re sharing why ERP integration is so important and how to perform it.
What is ERP Software Integration?
Organizations want to be as multi-functional as possible. They want to achieve more and do more in as little time as they can. ERP software integration allows them to combine their products into one, seamless solution so they can boost productivity and standardize operations.
Why does this matter? It puts all your data into one, easy-to-access, central location. You can check, maintain, and update one system instead of multiple systems.
While this is easier, quicker, and more efficient, many project teams fail to place this step on their list of priorities.
When implementing an ERP, CRM, or SCM system, an organization may install it as a standalone system. Then, they wonder why it won’t “talk” to all the other applications they have running at their office.
To get the most out of your technology investment, the enterprise system needs to communicate with other tools you use. ERP software integration problems can lead to a host of issues and can sometimes cause ERP failures.
A Failed Payroll System Implementation
Panorama’s Expert Witness team was retained to provide a forensic analysis and written report to the court regarding the failed implementation of a major software developer’s ERP/payroll system.
4 Reasons Why ERP Software Integration Prevents ERP Failure
1. Keeps Data Entries Organized
When your programs don’t share data with one another, you could wind up with multiple records. For instance, they might contain similar data, but one record may also include missing, non-matching, or incomplete information. Even if the records do match, they might not be in the same format.
This can make it difficult for teams to work together when they need to find and share data quickly.
As you migrate data, you need to make sure the fields you enter align with what’s already in your system. When they do, teams will be able to use the new solution to access the information they need.
2. Improves Cross-Department Collaboration
ERP software improves team communication and collaboration. However, skipping ERP software integration means giving your employees a tool that doesn’t work with any other system in their office. As a result, many everyday processes will remain manual.
Collaboration could fall by the wayside as manual activities increase. This can be a recipe for project failure due to low user adoption. You don’t want to add another system if it won’t make the workday any easier.
3. Facilitates Organizational Change Management
It can be intimidating and frustrating to learn a brand-new system, especially if you still have to juggle several other applications.
To help employees understand and embrace the change, it helps to keep things as simple as possible.
Integrating the new ERP system into your existing workflows minimizes disruption. Employees may have another step to perform when they need to initiate an action, but it’s less overwhelming than starting from scratch.
This especially applies to remote workers, who may already feel out-of-the-loop from on-premise data. Solutions that feel fragmented and isolated can be a hard sell, but ones that are accessible from anywhere at any time are easier to stomach.
In addition, training employees on a new system is easier when it’s integrated. If they had to learn how to use each system individually, it could take up a substantial amount of time and resources.
4. Enhances Data Visibility and Data Analytics
Once you’re up and running with the new technology, you’ll want to know how it’s performing. You also need to know how it’s impacting your organization.
If you’ve failed to integrate your system with the rest of your applications, it can be nearly impossible to get a comprehensive, 360-degree view of its performance. It’s also more difficult to pinpoint where something went wrong if you don’t know the full story.
When all your systems feed into one another, you can pinpoint precisely where in the workflow the issue occurred and take quick action to reverse it.
Make Software Integration a Project Priority
When you invest your time, money, and resources into an enterprise software project, you want it to help you achieve all your organizational goals. You also want the software to be easy to use and monitor. This is why ERP software integration is key.
The most efficient applications are those that communicate seamlessly with one another. To glean the most insights from your new investment, be sure to develop an integration strategy as part of your project planning process.
If you need assistance, our software consultants can guide you every step of the way. Reach out to one of our ERP consultants to learn more!