No matter the actual size of your enterprise, effectively
managing, analyzing, and interpreting the data created by its mere operation is
a full time job. Whether it is deciding which brand of stapler to purchase or
determining which corporate acquisition will best fit the organization,
decision makers need timely, accurate, and pertinent data. Enterprise resource
planning (ERP) systems supply the infrastructure necessary to integrate and
aggregate all of that operational data into useable and actionable pieces.

For small businesses with only a few principle participants,
a full-fledged ERP system will most likely not be cost effective. However, many
of the basic principles of ERP, especially with regard to logistics and supply
chain management, apply to any operation regardless of size and can make a big
difference when competing with larger players in the market. Understanding the
basic principles of ERP and implementing the ones that benefit your enterprise
in particular, is possible without acquiring an Ivy-league business degree.

ERP 101

For a basic definition of ERP you should check out its Wikipedia entry. However, for a more comprehensive examination
of ERP and its practical implications, TechRepublic
has a multitude of resources available. Each of these resources deals with a
particular aspect of ERP that can help you get a handle on your enterprise’s
operation.

Buckle
up: Implementing an ERP takes time and patience

(Source: CMP Media)
– Abstract: The implementation of an ERP platform can be a frustratingly long
and painful process. Because the ERP system permeates and touches almost all
operational aspects of the enterprise, great care and planning should be taken
before implementation to develop a complete and overarching architecture. This
white paper helps lay the foundational boundaries of an ERP system and establishes
a method for accomplishing what is often a radical organizational change.
However, enterprise resource planning, coupled with good strategy and a little
patience, can reap many rewards, making the process well worth it.

An
integrated approach to enterprise resource planning and data warehouse systems

(Source: Teepe.com) –
Abstract: This white paper discusses the general ERP trends that have shaped
the market and why a sound data warehousing strategy, which integrates with
operational ERP systems, is becoming essential to managing a successful
company. Increasingly, decision support and data warehousing capabilities are
playing a significant role in customers’ enterprise applications investments.
In today’s fast-paced, quickly changing market, there is a fundamental need to
combine the strengths of ERP solutions with data warehousing solutions to
enable companies to gain better, faster insight into their businesses and
respond to changes in the market immediately.

The six deadly
ERP sins

(Source: Manoeuvre)
– Abstract: Implementing an ERP system is not a project to be taken lightly as
you can well imagine, but you can benefit from the experience of other rollouts
as explained in this white paper. Avoid the most common mistakes made during
the implementation of an ERP system and save yourself some headaches later.

Retain
ERP project team

TechRepublic member comviz
is setting up a team of implementers for SAP and Oracle. His current concern is
how to retain the team members once they are in place. The assumption is that monetary
compensation will not be enough to keep the team together. This Tech Q&A is
answered satisfactorily by IND_Consulting,
with advice that could apply to any ERP implementation.

Bring it home

The benefits of a well-implemented ERP system cannot be ignored,
but the radical enterprise-wide changes required to bring it to fruition mean
that no organization should ever take the process lightly. This is true whether
you are a multinational conglomerate or a work-from-home eBay super-seller.