ERP implementations – why are customers still concerned?

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Hong Kong: For the majority of organisations across verticals and segments, ERP ( enterprise resource planning) software remains core to their business processes and functions. However, when it comes to implementations of ERP, a recent Epicor study revealed that ERP implementations still remain the biggest concern for about half of the customers.

A resounding 96% of organisations surveyed globally have confidence in their ability to navigate the early stages of the ERP purchase process, from initial evaluation to requirements planning, according to Epicor’s recent research study.

However, 48% of customers cited a strong need for more support and partnership from their ERP providers during the latter stages of the purchase journey – from implementation, go-live, and ongoing customer care – to ease the migration and realize faster time-to-value.

The 2022 Epicor Industry Insights report surveyed more than 1,350 ERP users in the U.S., U.K., Australia, and New Zealand to reveal what is driving organisations to look for – and expect more – from their ERP providers, especially critical as organisations are increasingly presented with a growing number of options in making the move to the cloud and expanding technology capabilities beyond traditional ERP.

As per the study, 82% of respondents were operating in a hybrid cloud environment, with 46% either primarily or entirely in the cloud, a slight uptick from survey findings in 2021 which saw a large increase in cloud consideration driven by the pandemic.

In fact, 90% of decision-makers indicated their move to the cloud was worth the effort, having realized a variety of transformational benefits including improved flexibility and adaptability, better security, simple regulatory compliance, and enhanced business resilience.

A majority of these respondents using cloud solutions – nearly 90% – said they feel loyal to their current ERP provider. Nearly half of decision makers said they actively consider moving to a new ERP solution every one to three years, due in part to industry innovation and rapid digital transformation delivering a proliferation of new technologies.

Common triggers cited for re-evaluation include better functionality from another provider, integration challenges with new technologies, cybersecurity concerns, and stronger customer support. For ERP providers, there’s no room for complacency.

Companies are setting a higher bar for their ERP providers to deliver on more than just the technology itself, according to Steve Murphy, CEO of Epicor.

“Our annual study shows that customers want a provider that can not only tailor their solution to the industry-specific needs that fit the customer’s business, but also collaborate closely throughout the entire purchase journey to provide transparency, strengthen onboarding and training, ensure dedicated support teams, and ultimately help realize meaningful business value,” said Murphy.

“To do that, the ERP provider can’t just be a software expert, they must also act as a committed partner,” added Murphy.

The Epicor study reflects how ERP software providers need to focus on the entire customer experience from sales, planning, implementation, go-live, and ongoing support. And why for customers, ERP implementations are still – the biggest concern even in 2022.

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