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“What will my next -car- ERP choice be?” by Denis Torii

by Debbie Wilson  |  March 22, 2019  |  Comments Off on “What will my next -car- ERP choice be?” by Denis Torii

“What will my next car ERP choice be?” by Denis Torii

I recently bought a new car. One that took me a couple of months to choose in fact. The “need” to buy a new car was triggered by a visit I made to the dealership some months ago. During one of the so-called “regular maintenance” appointments, I told the guy that I needed my regular oil changes done, but also that I had one special request, regarding my doors’ power locks mechanism. It was not only closing intermittently, but also making some strange noises while no one was handling it. And also that I wanted him to check how much would it cost to run some small bodyshop fixes in the car. What happened next was that he called me an hour after I left and told me he found out that the regular maintenance work would require a US$1000 unplanned fix on the suspension. He advised all the power locks to be replaced, which would cost me another US$500. The bodyshop fixes would cost me around US$1000 more. So, all in all, besides the regular fixes, it would cost me around US$3000 to fix everything if I wanted to. Considering the depreciation of the car in the market, and the favorable commercial conditions I was able to find, it made a lot of sense to replace that car, which I liked a lot, but was probably not enjoying as much as I did in the past. Not to say the smell of a new car makes me feel in heaven…

Enterprises in many cases approach ERP selection similar to buying a car. We always get questions that sound like “What are the best ERP solution choices for my industry and size of company?”. That would be similar to asking “What is the best utility car in the 40K-80K range?” And while many people would expect to receive a short list of 2-3 solution names just out of that question, that is in many ways a false expectation. When asked about the business strategy that will be supported by those solutions, not many can go beyond the common statement “digital business transformation”. And it gets worse when people would be asked what their definition of best is – the cheapest, the most adopted, the most innovative platform, or maybe my favorite: the best return on the investment. Going back to the cars: the best return on investment for a car lover may be the sophisticated engine with high tech components. For the driver looking at less cost per mile, the best return would come from the car with less maintenance costs and more miles per gallon.

Of course, buying a new ERP requires you to gather a lot of things. Some examples are:

  1. What kind of business problems are you trying to solve?
  2. What kind of new business outcomes and opportunities are you pursuing?
    1. Is this a transformation initiative? Or more of an optimization one?
    2. What is the business readiness to work on that vision?
  3. Is this part of an ERP consolidation strategy? Is a tiered-ERP approach something under consideration (Gartner clients can read about 2-Tier in my latest note – 2-TierERP: Modernizing the Hidden Jewels of the Enterprise)?

Of course, the list is way more extensive than this one. The intended result of that questioning is to create a documented ERP strategy that will enable a more robust decision process for that application selection. An approach that will be based on the business and IT drivers. And more importantly, not a direction which started by a vendor-vision, but on an enterprise-led effort to define needs and goals. Gartner has many different tools to help you throughout the process, so reach out to us and we can help you decide What will my next car ERP choice be.

Additional Resources

Category: applications  erp  

Deborah R Wilson
Managing Vice President, ERP Strategy Team
12 years at Gartner
20 years IT industry

Deborah Wilson, a recovering Gartner research analyst, leads the Gartner ERP strategy research team. Read Full Bio




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