Business Opportunities: Enterprise Resource Planning Essay

Question:

Discuss about the Business Opportunities for Enterprise Resource Planning.

Answer:

Introduction

A growth in business opportunities in the modern world has lead to the creation of several controlling and planning process tools that greatly benefit a firm. It is noted that the use of these newly developed mechanism have been increasing at a steady rate. Apart from the several functionalities in a firm, the topic of Enterprise Resource Planning has received a greater amount of acceptance in the business sector. In the words of Leon (2014), being a multi dimensional aspect, the process has greatly supported development and growth. In addition to attending towards product, manufacturing, servicing and inventory management sections, ERP system cater to financial, marketing and sales department as well. It is noted that an enlargement of ERP in an organization tends to spread throughout the management and departmental areas as well.

Despite of being dependent on the IT industry, enterprise systems have emerged to be a multibillion dollar segment across the globe. Also, with an increased rate of success, small and medium scale companies have also integrated ERP system in their framework. According to ERP (2014), over the years, experts have actively tried to track growth processes and resource availabilities to be able to use the mechanism in the most profitable manner. It is noted that an organized relationship between computer network and network formations noticeably benefit the systems.

For this particular project the journey of ERP systems has been taken into consideration. Moreover, several company cases have also been included in the report for a better understanding of the topic. Being a diversified subject, enterprise resource planning tends to different approach with discrimination in the type of a company and its individual capability level. In addition to the different stages and potentiality, drivers and barriers of the well developed planning systems are focused on in this project.

Unending Journey of ERP Systems

As stated by Chiu et al. (2014), ERP systems tends to cover mostly every other sector of a business framework. It is noted that with a nature to serve as a helping hand in performing back office jobs, the mechanism are likely to undergo a continuous and unending process. Further, in the modern world there has been an increase in technological dependency thereby making the processes an integral function of a company. It is with the help of the integrated functions that the management of a firm successfully collects studies, manages and further interprets information to facilitate decision making in business activity areas. Additionally, the newly developed business processes also significantly contributes towards maintain a database management mechanism which help to keep a track of financial transactions, goods dealing, production, marketing and various other activities.

It is noted that ERP systems have greatly facilitated clarity and transparency in an enterprise as well. The managers tend to greatly value enterprise resource planning not only because of the various advantages it provides, but also because of its tendency to fulfil targets of the business. As opined by Monk and Wagner (2012), being confronted with a diversity of internal and external factors that directly affect performance levels of a business firm, the systems have also enabled to mitigate effects of the issues. Further, the computerized systems keep a continuous track of the several resources, analyze them and focus on its optimum use along with cutting down costs. Being integrated software, ERP systems apart from ensuring a smooth flow of data among all departments of a firm, guarantees an increased degree of efficiency. Also, interpretation of the exchanges data is a responsibility of the advanced mechanisms. In order to facilitate a smooth function among the business framework and also develop positivity across staff members, supervisors tend to value ERP system more than earlier times (Babu and Bezawada 2012).

According to Shaul and Tauber (2013), over the year organizations have tested ERP systems and have been highly benefitted from its use. Along with concentrating on its careful and planned implementation, managers tend to prioritize segments of affect as well. Moreover, the modules of the systems are studied and divided into several components based on the needs and functions of a department. Operating in the rapidly changing environment, it is important that firms undertake standardization and speed up processes on a large scale basis. It is with the help of the organized and well planned systems that managers are able to perform in the desired manner. Ranging from integrating monetary information to noting client orders, the systems greatly benefit an enterprise (Hoch and Dulebohn 2013). It is noted that companies irrespective of their types perform on a continuity basis in the environment thereby highlighting an unending journey of the enterprise resource planning systems.

Discovery and Planning

As opined by Tsai et al. (2012), the discovery and planning starts during the process of sales in an organization and continues after the sales. In this phase of the journey, the project team is created. The pace continues approximately 4 weeks, where the principle objective is to become more acquainted with the business and its procedures. Discovery begins within the business cycle and revelation and arranging proceeds after the deal is made. The usage group works with the venture group to make a strong venture arrange where the ultimate objective is to carry out the ERP project effectively. The activities in the phase include having a close look at the organization's corporate structure, lines of business, divisions, product offerings, and so forth. The group will likewise jump into the business procedures, for example, quote to money, get to pay, money administration, and periodically shutting.

ERP1s design stage focuses on building up an framework that not only provides several advantages to the organization, but also enhances the return of investment towards the clients. Further, the outlines stage initiates after discovery and planning functions, specifically at the occurrence of project selection, documentation and alignment of information (Cao, Nicolaou and Bhattacharya 2013). It is noted that the systems and the taskforce work towards decrypting the client framework to be able to evaluate potential choices. It is after analyzing the choices, that the group tends to work effectively along with the venture in order to develop designs and thereby focus on implementation of policies that further leads to building up capability levels.

Like any development project, improvement does not start with real development work. Development must not start until legitimate arranging and documentation has been done. The primary motive of the development processes is building up an advanced framework environment that significantly helps in data relocation and fundamental approvals. Moreover, a proper creation of the structures lends a hand towards incorporating a testing condition and also develops consumer capabilities. According to Tarhini, Ammar and Tarhini (2015), there exists a high degree of adaptability in the newly developed ERP systems as well. The alignment of necessary information and method assignment helps to identify the needs of the people thereby ensuring their fulfilment. The usage group constructs, send, and test any required elements that are distinguished during the development stage. This incorporates changing or develops new processes, taking into consideration the new processes comprising of reports, data sheets that fit the ERP structure in a better manner.

It is noted that the stage of testing along with concentrating on ERP usage, also focuses on tracking improvement in areas of customization. Further, the final consumers began preparing in an uncommon training setting using samples of data. There is no defined limit in the improvement and testing of the system. In addition to that, there will be a huge gap between the two procedures. To audit the development stage and different stages in the implementation process, more articles in this arrangement are achieved (Olson and Staley 2012). The targets for the testing stage will be to certify framework usefulness arrangement with necessities and begin end user capability.

According to Cao, Nicolaou and Bhattacharya (2013), the venture and practice grouping tends to study the fluctuating situations and thereby make the final decision. It is noted that the final data are collected and accepted before its announcement. Additionally, the groups also help in delegating responsibilities among the taskforce who shall perform in the newly developed framework.

After the final declaration of the ERP framework, the project groups tend to work towards a different motive. It is noted that as the customer performance level advances in the framework over time, certain modification and alterations in the arrangement might be required. As per Ak?a, Esen and ?zer (2013), there may exist various features in the developed framework which the deployment groups tend to compromise until its announcement. Clients may likewise discover marginally unique approaches to use the framework that help them be more beneficial.

Potential Benefits of ERP Systems Journey

In the words of Ha and Ahn (2014), ERP systems provide a company with a vast range of benefits. Being a diversified aspect, the mechanism greatly helps in developing capabilities and also smoothens functional activities. It is noted that the management of a firm tends to successfully integrate the well planned systems in the framework of their enterprise and also make the most of the resources. Not only does it saves times, but also cuts down costs thereby leading to increase in profit margins. A proper integration of the subjects also actively helps in lowering errors and enhances speediness in an organization. It is noted that an accurate collection and use of information lends a hand towards building a better organization as well.

Additionally, in the modern generation an efficient use of the techniques helps in sales forecasting which leads to a consequent inventory optimization. As stated by Hasibuan and Dantes (2012), apart from gathering necessary data, the tracking functions of the system also greatly benefit a company. Concerning Australia, there exists a large number of firms that actively integrates enterprise resource planning systems. Further, the managers of manufacturing, IT, production and various other firms tends successfully use order and revenue tracking functions to ensure matching of buying orders, costing and inventory receipts.

On the other hand, the centralization of information significantly contributes towards developing clarity and transparency in an organization. Apart from focusing on standardizing multiple systems, the advanced systems also help in securing legitimacy as well. Moreover, the encrypting and decrypting of information contributes towards enhancing management functions and serves the people in a best possible manner (Kerzner 2013). It is the tracking of data which contributes towards providing expected results, ensures high quality client service, proper manufacturing and further builds up efficiency.

Also, it is seen that the system nature to collect data and provide the managers with exact details helps in facilitating decision making as well. Along with developing adaptability, ERP systems tend to make a company more flexible and consequently lower rigidity in the framework. An increase in malleability noticeably leads to building up of capability levels. As stated by Hanafizadeh et al. (2012), one of the most crucial functions of the mechanisms is to improve data privacy in an enterprise. In addition to a development in abilities, the systems aggressively tend to protect the collected information from wring and unethical usage.

According to Yeh and Xu (2013), it is noted that the gathered facts in an organization can be interpreted in a number of ways. A differentiation in their types opens up opportunities for collaboration. In addition to developing communication with the employees, the system also help in building up relationship with the outer world as well. The right use of information at the time of building up connection greatly contributes towards enhancing performance levels. Despite of being a comparatively small nation, there lays a huge rivalry among the various companies in Australia. Moreover, organizations irrespective of their types maintain a strong and stiff relationship with each other.

Several firms like BHP Billiton, Wesfarmers, Woolworths, ABC Learning and many others have successfully integrated ERP systems in their structural framework. With a primary motive to earn an increased amount of revenue and serve the society in a better way, managers focus on benefitting the most from the computerized and network systems. On the contrary, firms like Westpac, Virgin Airlines, Spot Jobs, Red Rooster, Cotton On and many others are faced with various weaknesses of the system (Ram, Corkindale and Wu 2013). It is noted that customization and engineering processes might be a problem at certain times. Also, ERP systems have a higher cost and require extensive training of the taskforce along with an increased switching charge.

Among the several advantages of enterprise resource planning tool, one of the most affecting is the timely payment of remuneration to the staff members. According to Chofreh et al. (2014), an increase in invoicing and payment processing directly contributes towards enhancing productivity and positivism in the business environment. Additionally, the timeliness of data provision and creating of soft and hard copies permits accessibility. As compared to computer personnel, ERP system tends to provide more accurate and comprehensive data with better presentation which is more acceptable to the auditors. It is also seen that Australian firms are able to cut down costs, lower wastage of resource, ensure timely delivery and focus on client follow ups like never before. It is through the monitoring and efficiency developments which help in collecting cash and reducing delay in receiving payments. Despite of the advanced operations in a business, a firm is greatly affected by various external conditions (May, Dhillon and Caldeira 2013). The management of a company is likely to opt for the ERP system to mitigate is effect and carry out functional processes in an effective manner.

Furthermore, ERP systems benefits organizations in the following manner:

Acts as a problem solver in situations of doubt

Offers an unified client record that helps various departments in a firm

Acts as a support towards taxonomy structures, invoicing programs, accounting policies

Develops data access and management across the several levels of a company

Builds up competitive advantage factors

Drivers and Barriers of ERP Systems Journey

According to Meyr, Wagner and Rohde (2015), the execution of enterprise resource planning systems greatly depends on the motives, purposes and individual capabilities of the managers in an organization. In addition to the design solutions, business realities and structure of a firm, ERP systems increasingly depend on the customization patterns, functional processes and procedures that suit the business. It is noted that the practice of the mechanisms might differ with the type of the company. Several brands like Australian Pharmaceutical Industries, Computershare, CSR Ltd, Wesfarmers and many others tend to focus on their diversified methodologies and objectives to successfully integrate the technology in the business framework.

Moreover, it is noted that firms that deal in investment, hospitality, consumer goods, retail, industrial, financial and various other major industries have a need for the ERP systems (Staehr, Shanks and Seddon 2012). Ranging from identifying needs, evaluating situations to successfully interpreting the designing and integration of the systems, managers tend to seek help of an expert consultant. Additionally, the drivers of ERP systems journey are following:

While awesome advantages can be achieved from ERP executions, it is yet esteemed as a non-achievement. The primary driver of the obstruction is that these issues are identified with individuals, for example, changing work hones. It is further said that it is a typical misguided judgment that ERP is a PC subject, when in actuality it is a person related, business subject. As stated by Petter, DeLone and McLean (2013), the issues that emerge from ERP executions can be characterized into one of three classes, namely specialized, money related or authoritative. Keeping in mind the end goal to accomplish a smooth execution a nearby corporation both inside the association and between the association and the seller is basic.

As per Parr, Shanks and Darke (2013) few organizations that implements ERP frameworks do not understand the full advantage which the systems offers because of their operation scales and low competencies. Moreover, ERP deployment is intensely monotonous as the tasks may take a period of one to three years or sometimes even more to get completed and entirely functional. Further, a lower amount of customization might not synchronize with the integrated systems and business processes as well thereby making it hard to upgrade the overall framework. It is critical to assess the evaluation of the ERP and its steps before implementation (Matende and Ogao 2013).

Conclusion

The ERP system is a long process that goes beyond the ongoing process. Simply propelling an ERP usage includes a considerable measure of strategies. ERP is not about going live, but rather about accomplishing the full business advantage of your venture. Furthermore, the project infers the way to understand that the advantages of ERP starts with having a far longer and more extensive perspective of the organization. The ERP system is a never ending process as ERP normally adjusts the organization's business forms, which make the additional workload for representatives who utilize them at first. ERP usage and operation is a nonstop procedure and requires a consistent audit and course adjustments. The organization needs to understand that the advantages of ERP go a long way, including all goals and purposes of the organization.

In the meantime with a growth in experience and best practices, organizations effectively precede the go-live stage. The ERP system gathers the full advantage of the investment in the organization. The ERP system includes six stages such as discovery and planning, design stage, development, testing, deployment and ongoing support. Each stage in the process is beneficial for the organization as it supported the organization to achieve all the goals. The process requires investment and focus to understand the full advantage of an ERP execution. After going live, the changes in the system can be sensational, particularly in connection to how individuals carry out their works. Dealing with the fall starts with an arrangement that addresses the organization’s conditions. It includes preparing and changing activities for the individuals who utilize the framework. Moreover, there are barriers as well as drivers that accelerate the movement from one stage to the next in the ERP system journey. Furthermore, it can be seen that the initiative of ERP tend to be accountable, embryonic and extending in nature. In order to maintain positions in the market the ERP frameworks accessible to the organizations and skill required are evaluated.

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