Why You Shouldn’t Go to Your Software Vendor When You Need ERP Help
Looking for ERP software help can feel like no easy task, especially when some function has failed drastically and you need support immediately or your system is just not running efficiently on the whole and you don’t even know where to begin.Unfortunately, the universal solution we all turn to-Googling the problem-won’t really help you in this situation. As we’ve explained in the past, ERP software is not intuitive. There just isn’t one-size fits all solution when it comes to problems between your ERP software and your business—after all your business is like no other.
If you’re looking for a quick fix, then those who wrote the software might have the best (and easiest) option for you. Little bugs in the system or a fast coding query will be dealt with quickly and cleanly; but don’t expect any further advice on how development within your software is affecting business processes or what else you can do to personalize an ERP and leverage it to drive costs down.
However, when you do need ERP help or support that is more in-depth and it involves complex interactions with your business and its unique processes (i.e. you have errors with customs tasks or some function is not performing the way you thought it would,) there are a couple of reasons why you shouldn’t look to your software vendor. So where do you go? Have you tried the consulting partner route? Let us explain.
Vendors Provide ERP Help—To A Point
Turning to the vendor will only get you so far. They might be able to help you code a new taskbar or give you advice on building a custom app, but you should first ask yourself how well the vendor really knows your business. Aside from that flashy demo they may have created for you using only a small sample of you data, would they really know how your business runs and how to optimize a dashboard so that your employees are most comfortable using it?
The next question you should be asking: if you do seek help from the vendor, are the people supporting you the same people that came out to sell you software? Often times, they won’t be. So even if you think your specific software agent really got a good grasp of your business during the on-site visit, your assigned support specialist may only be going on the quick notes that salesperson took, or even going into your solution blind. If they don’t really understand your company’s processes and goals, they will also not be able to customize a system with desired features or help you work through why their system is not saving your company the amount of money you projected.
Why Partner Up?
The bottom line: a software company’s job is to write software and then to sell it. Once they have completed that project then their know-how quickly drops off. When you work with a consultant or software partner for your ERP help, you are getting support from people whose job function is exactly that: support and consulting, not software sales. Once you have selected an ERP system from the many choices available to you and downloaded the piece of empty software, there’s not much in the way or personalization and integration that they can help you with.
On the contrary, a software partner or implementation consultant’s job starts exactly when you decide you need ERP help. They have amassed their experience in software support—not sales. Partners build their business on the success of whatever project you have brought them on for; their success depends on how you feel about your software. That’s why they truly care about it working and know the ins and outs of every roadblock you might need to swerve around on the way. Whether you need a sounding board when selecting an ERP system for your company (it’s a big step!) or someone to step in after an implementation gone wrong, software partners have seen it all. Many partners will also provide their unique solutions for whatever area you need support in: Datix offers a unique, pre-built tool called Datix Unity that will integrate your ERP with a whole host of other programs, including a Salesforce or Microsoft Dynamics CRM program. Read more here about the array of benefits CRM and ERP integration can bring—you won’t get that kind of multi-program support when you rely on a software vendor. That’s because the vendor will only provide support once you have chosen their software, and you are working exclusively with it. When you need ERP help that goes beyond these small instances, you need to turn to a software partner.
End to End Solutions, Whenever You Need ERP Help
As mentioned, software companies know software—but that’s where the road ends. Partner programs and VARs (Value Added Resellers) are designed to provide ‘end-to-end’ solutions that see you through from the beginning of a project until you are 100 percent satisfied with your enterprise software system.
Consultants help with business processes; they have worked with them extensively in the past and know how to identify when certain ones are inefficient and when others are not properly documented. Your partner will first complete Business Process Modeling—going through your company holistically, looking at your employees and every single task you need supported by a software system. All of this needs to be mapped out before you can even begin selecting a specific software vendor. All you’re going to hear from the vendors during your selection process is flashy sales talk—not the kind of support you need to truly select a system thats going to provide the foundation for your business’ software project to succeed.
By bringing an outside partner on from day one of your project, they work actively to select the best ERP for you, give you the implementation and integration support you need and all of the customization know-how that will lead to a unique system built for you and adoptable by everyone within the business. Whatever step in that process you need help with, the partner will be able to provide assistance as you need them to and for how long you need them to, not as they deem relevant to their business model.
Hands On Support
Not a fan of the faceless web chat support solution? Many consultants will offer on-site support during their partnership with you. This means in-person, hands-on ERP help and training. It can be impossible to effectively communicate convoluted coding solutions, training techniques or fixes that require the input of multiple employees over phone calls or web chats. On-site consulting circumnavigates this difficulty, and ensures that employees learn the correct usage by active example and testing, not just by absent-minding reading.
This kind of face-to-face comprehensive help can range from the extensive process testing required before any go-live, to training—or retraining, as the case may be—your employees on proper adoption of the software, and can even include additional tweaks or add-ons you find you might need after deployment (although a consultants prime focus should be on making sure your software works right out of the gate, snags can sometimes happen). In a world of customer support thats disappearing behind usernames and screens, a face to face solution is still the best option when you need ERP help that is complex and specific.
If you’re looking for in-depth and hands-on ERP help, whether it’s with building out a new system or helping to kick a costly and lagging one back into gear, the experts at Datix can help: get in touch with us. We are certified implementation and integration partners with Salesforce, Microsoft Dynamics, Scribe and Plex, and an Epicor Gold Partner and have 17 years of experience in providing ERP support when it is most needed, whatever step in the process. Learn more about our tried and tested Enterprise Software Solutions.