Does Your Business Have a Legacy ERP System?
One of the traps it is easy to fall under as a technology company is using the jargon, even when having a discussion with a non-technical person. So let me first start by defining what I mean by legacy. A Legacy ERP system is simply put, a system that no longer meets the needs of the company. It is not as simple as staying one or two versions behind the current release of the system, because an ERP system can be fully functional for a company for 5 years and in the meantime, several new versions may have been released. A legacy version of software is no longer being enhanced. Legacy ERP systems typically have rich, industry-specific business functionality, which is often how they came to be legacy systems in the first place. Their creators kept writing application code to meet the needs of existing customers and never invested in re-platforming the system on modern technology.
Regardless of definition, companies using legacy systems are all too familiar with the pain they cause such as:
- Lack of information needed for good decision-making.
- Loss of employee morale as users struggle with screens and processes that make their jobs harder, not easier.
- Increased costs due to escalating yearly maintenance expenses and the high-cost customizations needed to adapt the system to business needs.
- Prevention of upgrades or functionality needed to do their jobs effectively.
In Q1 of this year, there were a lot of articles published discussing the upcoming technology trends in 2016 such as IoT and Cloud ERP to name a couple. Many organizations probably spent some time deciding if any of these trends are something that they should consider. Maybe your CIO or IT Manager even spent time researching and beginning planning for some of these technology waves. Whatever your technology priorities in 2016, if you don’t make modernization of your legacy system your primary focus, all you’re doing is spinning your wheels. Organizations often times devote massive portions of their budgets and personnel focus to keeping systems functional and unfortunately it becomes a never ending cycle until the system is replaced.
Your ERP system is the technology at the center of your business. When used properly, it can be one of the most valuable assets your business has. Why would you let it get outdated and old? Think of some of the technologies you use on a regular basis such as your mobile phone, tablet, and laptop. Now think of some of the appliances you use in your life like your lawn mower, refrigerator, and oven. Those things are as important to your daily life as a person, as an ERP system is to your organization. It is time to start giving it as much attention. If your ERP system is not providing the data, in real-time, that you need to run your business, it is a legacy system and needs to be replaced. If you need an ERP Consultant to come in and customize a work around for your system because the functionality is not doing what you need, it should be considered a legacy system.
Cloud ERP is a new alternative offered to help Legacy customers upgrade to a current ERP system and make it easy for them to stay current. There still may be Infrastructure upgrades and other software items to consider when doing this. If you are considering upgrading your Legacy system, 2W Tech is one of the only Epicor partners that still works with Legacy systems. We can help work through a maintenance plan for your system, as we are planning and implementing your new ERP system. We have experience with understanding how this transition can affect your Infrastructure and hardware, as well as time frames for implementation, along with project management to ensure the project doesn’t blow up your business operations. Contact us today if you have a Legacy ERP system and want help navigating through the weeds.