Alyssa Futterer, Senior Marketing Technology Manager at Blytheco, has over 12 years of digital, communications and content marketing experience with 5 years in software tech specializing in the ERP, EDI, and SaaS space. Alyssa leverages her relevant experience to create content that educates and informs customers and industry professionals, and helps to improve their businesses through innovative software technologies. Connect with Alyssa on Linkedin.
Top ERP Software Trends for 2022
Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software has become a crucial resource that impacts a company’s structure on all fronts from strategic planning, to mid-management choices, to highly granular, data-driven decisions on the floor. ERP systems allow for the accumulation, flow, interoperability, and analysis of data between all enterprise departments. They integrate elements such as business metrics, logistics, financing, accounting, operations, traceability, compliance, manufacturing production data, and more.
In a sense, ERP systems have become as necessary in 2022 as computer workstations were in 1999. Forward-thinking leaders who want continued relevance and faster growth need to familiarize themselves with upcoming ERP industry trends.
Here are some current trends in ERP to watch out for:
- The continuation of integrating data with interconnectivity
- Accelerating automated creation, distribution, and data usage
- Fast-tracking the personalization of ERP solutions
The Continuation of Integrating Data with Interconnectivity
Data is the lifeblood of businesses. Protecting it, while allowing it to flow seamlessly amongst team members and strategic partners is a critical requirement in an Industry 4.0 environment that experiences rapid digital transformation.
Universal Mobile Support
When the pandemic struck, it ended the days of having ERP software as just an on-premise system. Universal cloud accessibility is now a critical component of ERP software. Cloud accessibility supports everywhere access to data, empowering team members to conduct business processes anywhere, any time. It removes friction and bottlenecks that were costly even before the pandemic. Finally, it creates a digital environment that enables remote collaboration, innovation, and business solutions, regardless of location or time zone.
Hyperscaling and Cloud Acceleration
In 2022, the recent acceleration of remote work, combined with the ongoing trend of exponential increases in useful business data underlined the necessity for redundant, high-volume data capacity in storage, bandwidth, and processing power. For some organizations, the need outstripped the availability. And if their ERP system was solely on-premise, their problem was compounded. On-premise servers and networks are designed for on-premise use only, making remote access overwhelming while also introducing security risks.
For these reasons, moving ERP solutions to the cloud is a critical operational and risk-reduction requirement, as is surge-proof capability in cloud resources. Hyperscaling empowers businesses to acquire a highly robust process for analyzing data in a cost-effective way, taking advantage of specialized hardware and security expertise while the business itself focuses on core missions.
Fast-tracking the personalization of ERP solutions
For years, basic Robotic Process Automation (RPA) software has been a highly productive, immediate, and simple way to achieve immediate ROI. By removing low-intelligence tasks (such as sending emails) from workloads, your valuable team members can boost productivity while saving costs. ERP industry trends for 2022 will see an escalation that goes far beyond traditional RPA to include automated creation, distribution, and data processing.
Hyperautomation is essentially RPA taken to the next level. However, there are two major differences.
- First, instead of simply executing low-intelligence tasks, hyperautomation automatically creates data, both from existing equipment and from a variety of innovative sensors and other Internet-connected devices.
- Second, ERP systems programmed for hyperautomation can automatically process the data seamlessly among departments and strategic partners.
Hyperautomation-capable ERPs empower teams not only through basic functions such as data input, repetitive calculations, and automated email responses, but they also provide intelligent automation, such as production planning, contingency decisions, ad spending decisions, and other actionable intelligence.
AI and ML in ERP Software Trends
Beyond Hyperautomation, ERP software trends of 2022 include continuous improvements of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) capabilities. Off-the-shelf capability from major hyperscale players – such as AWS, Microsoft, Google, and others – afford unprecedented AI bandwidth capability even to smaller enterprises. They empower proactive leaders to innovate new use cases that increase efficiencies, reduce costs, create new revenue streams, and increase the revenue generated from existing sources.
Beyond such direct ROI effects, AI- and ML-driven ERP systems process existing data to optimize business operations; predict and avoid problems before they catch fire; accelerate an initiative’s time to profit; and virtually eliminate errors of data processing, transferring, and sharing.
Major ERP players and consultants are focused on this fast-developing trend, which is still in its infancy, and therefore, has much to offer for first-time movers who adopt it intelligently, with clear, realistic expectations that can bring both immediate and long-term ROI. It’s always wise to start with the low-hanging fruit such as the onboarding of suppliers, business decisions relating to timing and billing, and the creation and facilitation of profitable incentive discounts.
Customization That Prioritizes Modern Innovation
ERP industry trends are evolving towards the increasing customization of ERP solutions, amongst companies and within other departments of the same company. When ERP software was in its infancy, ERP systems were more of a one-size-fits-all solution than a unique, customizable technology. But as the ERP industry continues to mature, players are responding to the individual needs of client organizations, enabling innovative cases that weren’t imagined in core iterations of ERP software.
In the age of increasing competition, companies need customized ERP solutions to meet the need for constant innovation. The ERP industry is responding through software developments and consultant-assisted software customizations, and business logistics dictate that beneficial updates will only progress.
Multi-instance vs. Single-instance ERP Flexibility
Single-instance ERP installations allow every existing user in a given company to operate on the same installation. In a perfect single-instance ERP system, every department, every team member, and every facility worldwide can use the same ERP databases.
The idealistic appeal of a single-instance installation is obvious. It enables a single source of truth, precludes many errors, and creates previously unattainable efficiencies in data sharing and business operations. But it doesn’t always work well in the real world.
Multi-instance ERP installations offer flexibility and security redundancy. Various departments may have specific, critical, and mutually exclusive needs for storing or processing data. The finance department may need to customize one set of data; for example, that operations may need to customize or render in another way. Also, divisions in different countries have specific needs around regulation, taxation, and compliance. ERP consultants are listening to the business needs of the real world and are adapting their single-instance ideals to accommodate ERP customizations, adaptability, and personalization.
Furthermore, multi-instance custom installations and maintenance empowers companies to gradually assume the risk of new versions. Without upgrading to a new release company-wide, teams can observe what problems or opportunities may arise before the entire company takes the plunge into a new upgrade.
Personalized ERP Solutions for Your Unique Needs
No-code and low-code evolution in ERP software is increasingly allowing end-users and team leaders to customize interfaces and functions. The one-size-fits-all mentality has given way to a pragmatism that democratizes the use of ERP software, enabling personalized solutions for businesses, departments, teams, and even individuals. In 2022, the wave of evolution is located within customization for businesses and departments, with an expectation that it will continue working its way down to individual teams and employees.
Underlying this evolution is the need for significantly better, and faster ROI. Business leaders, managers, and team members know how to innovate. It should be the role of ERP software developers and expert consultants to deliver on the need of businesses to move quickly. The end-user should be able to use the software in specific, innovative, and profitable ways to maximize returns. This is even more important in our time of excessive disruption and elevated uncertainty.
Real-time Data Accessibility and Use
Having real-time, immediate access to necessary information brings instant and sustainable ROI. It allows an organization to become truly agile, as performance data and recommendations become easily visible at any moment.
HOW BLYTHECO CAN HELP
Speak to a Blytheco ERP expert, and transform your company’s profitability, operational stability, and long-term efficiency.