Enterprise resource planning (ERP) is a process that uses specialized software to automate certain business functions, such as supply chain management and payroll, all while taking into account business operations, such as product development, marketing and manufacturing. It’s a highly complex system that requires dedicated teams to manage all aspects of the software. This complexity means that many deployment failures prohibit the widely adopted use of ERP.
Because ERP is a technological development, it is subject to change as technological and digital trends evolve. Being aware of trends that can affect the future of ERP allows you to reap the benefits of future ERP implementations.
The Internet of Things
The Internet of Things (IoT) is a concept wherein machines communicate with each other via the Internet. Your cell phone, for example, will tell your air conditioning at home that you’ve started to drive home, allowing the unit to switch on so that when you arrive, your house is at an ideal temperature. In a business sense, IoT can have machines inform product managers when parts are due for replacement or repairs are needed, allowing for continuous production without interruption. IoT will have a significant impact on ERP by providing new ways for processes to be streamlined, increasing efficiency and reducing costs.
Wearable technology has already had a huge impact in the personal market, with companies like Fitbit providing users with valuable data regarding their lifestyle habits. But this technology hasn’t made as much of an impact in the business world just yet. Various industries, however, such as manufacturing, health care and energy, are adopting wearables for site safety and monitoring employee well-being, and it’s likely that they will become more prevalent in the future. Wearables can provide ERP systems with additional data on employees while providing another platform by which machines would be able to interact with users, enhancing performance and increasing safety on hazardous work sites.
One of the largest trends in technology right now is the growing volume of information that is produced, both by customers and businesses. Many current ERP systems are unable to properly handle the large volume of data, resulting in disappointing results and inefficiency.
Being able to effectively handle large amounts of data and present relevant information after analysis is something that ERP systems will have to be able to do reliably and efficiently. One of the solutions proposed in the management of big data by current ERP developers is to ensure the business network is scalable to meet future demands and to combine this with new technologies as they arise. The challenge is to find the right mix of efficient data collection and processing, allowing for intelligent reporting of various enterprise applications. The future of ERP may very well depend on how well new technologies can be integrated into existing systems and how this mix will enhance business performance.
Technology is ever advancing and changing, providing new benefits and challenges to a number of various organizational processes. Having a consolidated management system in place can help a business keep ahead of its competition. New technological trends will only help ERP systems be more effective, either by providing new options for more efficient processes or by providing more data to allow the ERP system to make more intelligent decisions.