Enterprise resource planning (ERP) is a process management software used by businesses that merges various aspects of a business, such as manufacturing, financials, and reporting into one fluid system. In the past, separate software systems were needed for the mentioned business aspects to accomplish all business functions. Today, modern ERP software can bring all business processes together to keep up with all your business needs.
The future is now. A 2018 survey by Tech Pro Research found that 70 percent of companies utilize or plan to implement a digital transformation service. These survey results should not come as surprising as the world and more specifically, the workforce becomes more and more digitalized.
Here’s our list of top ERP trends and how they will affect business in 2019.
More Businesses are Migrating to a Cloud
Cloud-based storage is a common trend in business, but the power of the cloud is only growing as it gives businesses new capabilities they didn’t have even perhaps a year ago. What’s even more impressive is the buyers of cloud ERP systems.
Laurie McCabe of SMB Group Inc. notes that small- to mid-size are the ones adopting cloud ERPs. In fact, 92 percent of SMBs use at least one cloud-based storage application. This trend is only going to continue to accelerate as the cloud becomes the backbone tool that allows businesses to try out new technologies to grow their business.
Not to say that large companies cannot also benefit from cloud utilization. Cloud-based ERP is a popular option across many industries of various sizes. Cloud-based services have many integral options to offer enhanced customization, management services, and customer support. In 2019, cloud-based ERPs are an option for any business and should seriously be considered as a transformational tool that can be used across your company.
The Role of Social Media and Digital Marketing
While ERP leans more so to the operations of a business, it does have the ability to address sales, which is vital to social media and digital marketing efforts in 2019. Statista indicates that in 2019, there are an estimated 2.77 billion social media users worldwide, and this figure is expected to grow.
For businesses with digital marketers, product planners, and other online oriented positions, it is part of their job to look to online users. With a figure of 2.77 billion, online-focused jobs need to pay attention to how they can incorporate marketing and data gathering across social media. Depending on the size of your business, digital marketing can play a pivotal role in your ability to attract employees. Moreover, a marketing strategy must keep your company competitive, and it must bring results.
An ERP allows you to have a specific insight into data to examine your marketing actions and can help you better identify your target audience. Also, marketing efforts are not over as soon as you implement a strategy; they are an ongoing, long term effort. This is where an ERP can help your digital marketing efforts and boost your online presence. By identifying problems in your plan, an ERP essentially does the work for you so that you can be the most competitive in your field. Having an online presence in 2019 can make or break your business, and having an ERP that fits your marketing objectives is worthwhile pursuing.
Analytics for the Win
Like any industry, manufacturing needs to have good insight into its processes to ensure it can meet the demand for the foreseeable future. In 2018, durable goods manufactured in the United States saw a growth of 2.6 percent. Such a growth spurt in business means more manufacturing businesses will need help in handling daily business processes that can no longer be handled by a small team.
ERPs solve these manufacturing challenges because they are designed to help you:
- Increase efficiency
- Eliminate unnecessary downtime
- Enhance manufacturing production and performance
- Improve supply chain visibility
Essentially, an ERP allows you to see real-time analytics, allowing the system to create a forward-looking model to guide and provide suggestions to decision-makers. Additionally, ERPs can combine pre-existing data to develop a more detailed report of a company’s efficiency and productivity. With a booming economy in 2019, an ERP might be the answer you are looking for to forecast and boost your manufacturing efforts.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is Here
Artificial intelligence is just one of the new phenomena sweeping the globe, and to no surprise, its an effort to reduce the human interaction in business processes. This is not necessarily a bad thing. An online survey done by PWC reports that 63 percent of consumers believe AI will help solve problems in modern society.
Where does this fall in line with ERP? Though modern machine learning, ERP systems can become smarter. This means that instead of spending hundreds of working hours trying to plan your next business move, an AI ERP solution can predict future business opportunities and risks without any human intervention.
AI will continue to play a significant role in allowing ERP solutions to make decisions autonomously. While it reduces human intervention, it will enable business owners and other company decision-makers the opportunity to commit more time to additional value-adding business ventures. Although AI is still making its mark on society in 2019, it would be a beneficial investment for the long run of your business.
3D Printing on the Rise
To close out our list, we thought you might like to hear about one of the latest manufacturing processes that are revolutionizing the industry. In the past few years, additive manufacturing or 3D printing has begun to catch the attention of many businesses. For 2019 alone, it is projected that 3D printing will contribute 2.7 billion dollars to large public companies.
The role of ERP solutions in 3D printing is that it allows you to track your products from the material sourcing stage through delivery. In addition, ERP solutions paired with 3D printing allow for higher shop productivity as they are designed to be faster and more efficient than traditional machines.
While 3D printing is rather new, paired with an ERP system, 3D printing can integrate new and old production processes that will benefit companies. With the year already halfway over, considering an ERP solution for additive printing might be just what you need to improve facility production in 2020.