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Nine reasons you must use a flexible ERP for your professional services organization to thrive

Posted by  Henk Jan Onstwedder

In my experience, most companies see the merit of a good ERP system, but they don’t always think through how it will deliver value post-implementation. A flexible ERP solution is no longer a nice-to-have; it’s an essential for thriving businesses, especially in people-centric sectors.

If you’re a professional services organization looking at ERP’s capabilities, there are many ways that a truly flexible solution will help you to move faster, be more productive and sidestep disruption. Here are some examples:

  1. Make mergers and acquisitions easier

Mergers affect personnel and operations; but they also need a software platform to take on a new organization. With flexible ERP you can rapidly onboard new organizations, departments and structures, so you gain the value from two companies becoming one much faster.

  1. Restructure quicker

Internal structural changes to a team, department or organization often results in reconfiguring software architecture to meet changing structural needs. Flexible ERP systems use a low-code or no-code set-up, meaning any business user can make changes with minimal cost and disruption.

  1. Rapidly adapt to regulation changes

Speed of change is critical in order for your business to remain compliant. With a flexible ERP system, your workforce can quickly respond and access any information regulators require.

  1. Adopt new strategies with minimal disruption

As your business evolves, supporting software must also adapt. Flexible ERP systems will enable your personnel to embrace new strategies quickly with minimal disruption.

  1. Keep consultancy costs down

The more complex and rigid your technology platform, the greater input you will need from external technical experts, which escalates post-implementation costs and reduces the return of investment of your ERP. Moving to a low-code or no-code ERP system gives you greater capacity to make changes internally, cutting reliance on consultancy.

  1. React faster to disruption

The business world never stands still, and both internal and external influences have the power to rapidly change your company agenda. An ERP system with flexible software architecture enables you to welcome change and quickly respond to disruptive forces.

  1. Improve the customer experience

Customers are increasingly demanding, and competitors are often launching new technology-enabled services. While a good ERP software solution will support most of your operational requirements, you may want to integrate third-party software, or develop new functionality that gives your customers what they want, when they want it. If the platform you are using has an open API structure in the back-office and a low code/no code interface, you can incorporate new functionality while maintaining the integrity of the application landscape.

  1. Stimulate employee productivity

Too many talented professionals get held back by sub-standard software. Flexible, next-generation ERP systems give staff the power to move at maximum speed, delivering the required functionality whenever they need it.

  1. Boost the people experience

People work best when they are highly motivated, and there’s no better motivator than having the right tools for the job. A flexible ERP system delivers sophisticated support with configurable architecture, so employees can use it intuitively to test new functions that enhance their professional capabilities – all without the frustration of waiting for technology to keep up.

Flourish in a changing world

There are certain things a good cloud ERP system needs to possess to deliver the benefits above. A configurable service architecture with a low-code or no-code approach, so it can be updated by any business user; and it needs an open API structure, to integrate with other applications.

This set-up will give your organization the flexibility needed to flourish in a changing world, so you can seamlessly adopt new technology, create new business models, offer new services, and improve both your employee and customer experience.

Find a flexible ERP system to meet your company’s future needs; explore Unit4’s cloud ERP solution.

Henk Jan Onstwedder

Henk Jan is an experienced executive in the software business, who has worked in the ERP market for 25 years. Prior to joining Unit4 in 2016, he held a range of line-management roles in the software industry, covering sales, delivery and general management. Henk Jan is heading Unit4’s department for Professional Services Organisations, creating and delivering on industry product roadmaps, developing the ecosystem, and leading strategic sales engagements.