ERP Alternatives: What Are Your Options?
Published on 30 May 2023
3 minutes read
Table of Contents
ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) software can make business life easier. But, sometimes, it's too expensive or complicated for smaller businesses. It can also be challenging working with only one vendor and the risk of a pricey ERP failing. If you're worried that a one-vendor ERP system isn't right for you, it's time to explore other options.
Why are people looking for ERP alternatives?
In a study by Gartner Marketing Technology, 57% of people said they prefer choosing technologies that best meet their needs.
An ERP system's success is judged by its Return on Investment (ROI) - the benefits it brings your business. While ERP systems have lots of advantages - like boosting productivity and improving decision making - the total cost can be too high, especially for smaller businesses.
Many ERP systems started focused on one thing, then grew into large ERP suites. But they often still do only one thing well - the thing they were designed for - but are less reliable for other functions. If your business needs good inventory management and production tracking, this could be a problem.
There are also big risks if an ERP fails. It's clear that one-vendor ERP solutions might not be suitable for everyone. The main issues for small businesses are:
- They're complicated to set up
- Unexpected costs for new needs
- High costs to get started
- They take a long time to get up and running
- They're often specialized in one business area
- The financial impact if the ERP fails
What if there were other options?
Enter best-of-breed (BoB) solutions. BoB is a collection of the best software in the industry – usually cloud-based Software as a Service (SaaS) - that each does one thing really well. By combining a few of these products, you can create an affordable ERP alternative.
A best-of-breed ERP solution gives you the best each industry has to offer. Instead of a CRM system that's been expanded to include inventory and accounting, you get the best CRM system, the best inventory management system, and the best accounting system. For example, you might have a CRM platform for all your customer and sales information, an inventory management platform that controls and tracks production, and an accounting platform for your financial needs.
Things to look for in an ERP alternative
While each piece of software might come from a different vendor, they all work together seamlessly.
If you've decided a one-vendor ERP is too big, too complicated, or too expensive, a best-of-breed solution might be right for you. Here are some things you should look for in an ERP alternative:
Real-time inventory management: You need to know the levels, locations, and status of your stock all the time. This helps you decide when to reorder each SKU and avoid stockouts or overstocking. A product like Elobooks, an inventory management SaaS, could be a good fit here.
Purchasing and supply chain management: Automation can be a big help when it comes to creating purchase orders and managing suppliers. Also, Elobooks has seemlesss purchasing capability.
Sales order processing: Good tracking of sales orders can make customers happy and keep them coming back. Sales process is a strong part of Elobooks.
Production tracking: If you're a manufacturer, you need to optimise your production processes.
Analysis and reporting: Being able to measure and forecast data is crucial when planning for growth. Elobooks offers a great insights of your data.
Customer relationship management: A good CRM software can keep track of everything related to your customers. You can manage your clients and suppliers with Elobooks CRM.
Accounting: Accounting can be tough for businesses that aren't well-equipped. Cloud-based accounting software can take care of the boring parts of bookkeeping so your team can focus on other things. Elobooks offers basic accounting which is easy to understand for everyone.
In conclusion, opting for a best-of-breed software stack over a single-vendor ERP system can bring more flexibility, affordability, and effectiveness to your business operations. In this regard, Elobooks stands out as a reliable and robust inventory management SaaS, capable of meeting most of your inventory management needs and seamlessly integrating with other essential business systems.
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