Is Microsoft Charging You for an Upgrade? 5 Reasons Why Now is the Time to Change Your ERP System

By Paul Bywater | Small Business

Don’t sleepwalk into software and PC upgrades – learn why now is exactly the best time to get big savings and supercharge your performance with a new ERP system.

Is Microsoft Charging You for an Upgrade? 5 Reasons Why Now is the Time to Change Your ERP System image Screenshot 2014 09 11 at 12.11.53 Edited 600x351Is Microsoft Charging You for an Upgrade? 5 Reasons Why Now is the Time to Change Your ERP System

Software upgrades are a fact of life. But they are not the only, or always the cheapest, route to newer technology and improved functionality.

The withdrawal of support for Microsoft XP in April 2014 and Windows Server 2003 in July 2015 is prompting lots of firms to pause for thought: Do we follow the upgrade path and remain with our old ERP system, or is now the right time to invest in broader improvements across the organisation?

Introducing a new ERP system is a bold decision, but one which can reap rewards across your business. Here are five reasons why you should give it some serious consideration:


1. There is never a ‘right’ time to change.

If you’re looking for reasons not to replace your ERP software, you’ll always find them. There’s no getting away from the fact that it’s disruptive, demands a lot of your time and costs money.

But if you don’t do it now, when will you?

In the meantime, your current ERP system will become even older, even slower and even less efficient. And it will still be operating with processes designed for the way you ran your business – how many years ago?

The right time to change your ERP system is when that change will be more beneficial than remaining where you are today.


“Change is not made without inconvenience, even from worse to better.”

Samuel Johnson, preface to A Dictionary of the English Language, 1755


2. Seize the opportunity to increase efficiency.

Implementing a new ERP system is more than just installing a new software package. It’s a chance to review how you do what you do and to take advantage of new technologies.

It’s your opportunity to:

  • Boost productivity by introducing new tools not available in your current ERP software.
  • Cut inefficiency by removing those manual workaround processes that inevitably develop over time.
  • Reduce costs by realigning your ERP system to suit your business as it operates today.

Here are the top four reasons, according to Panorama Consulting, why businesses implement an ERP project:

  1. To improve business performance.
  2. To replace an old or legacy ERP system.
  3. To better integrate systems across multiple locations.
  4. To position the company for growth.


3. Cut the risk of working with aging resources.

While old software might continue to function as it always has done, ageing servers and IT staff won’t. Hardware wears out and finding replacements to run dated operating systems becomes increasingly hard.

As for your IT team – how reliant are you on the baby boom generation who are now retiring in droves? In 2011 the number of people hitting retirement age jumped by 30%, with similar high numbers set to retire over the next five years. This represents a huge drain of knowledge from the workplace.

Introducing a new ERP system cuts risk by bringing you up to date with technology, both hardware and software. It’s also a valuable opportunity to refresh the knowledge of your in-house technical team responsible for keeping operations running smoothly.


4. Increase your competitiveness at a time of recovery.

It’s been a long time coming, but economic recovery is underway. According to Growth Accelerator, the top locations for growth in the UK are:

  1. Birmingham
  2. London Borough of Westminster
  3. Leeds
  4. Manchester

Almost all of today’s businesses are leaner than they were five years ago, but how many have readied themselves to deal with growth?

A new ERP system can support growth by:

  • Enabling better and faster decision-making with accurate and timely delivery of information.
  • Delivering the flexibility you need to adapt to a faster-paced market.
  • Providing the capacity you need to expand as demand increases.
  • Producing more without increasing overheads.

5. A new ERP system is cheaper in the long term.

If time and cost are two reasons for not changing your ERP system today, the price of staying where you are could be even more expensive.

It’s easy to overlook the TCO (total cost of ownership) for ERP systems. TCO includes:

  • All hardware and software costs of the ERP system, including licences for additional applications.
  • Staff costs for maintaining your IT team.
  • Hidden costs introduced by the supplier later in your relationship.

A further price of staying with your old ERP system is that of lost opportunities, business that you knowingly or unknowingly turn away because your systems are inflexible or don’t provide the right information at the right time.

What percentage of organisations are still running XP? It depends on who you ask:

NetMarketShare: 31.4%

StatCounter: 20.5%


Things to think about:

  • There is never a ‘right’ time to change your ERP software, some times are simply less bad than others. If you don’t do it now, then when?
  • If you don’t implement new ERP software, are you putting yourself at a disadvantage to your competitors, who are taking advantage of new technology?
  • Working with ageing resources can seriously hamper, not help your business.
  • A new ERP system can facilitate growth – and the economic recovery has already started.
  • A new ERP system can deliver greater ROI than upgrading your software, in the long term.

Still not convinced that now’s the time to change your ERP system? Download the free eGuide: Business owner’s guide: 6 selfish reasons for wanting ERP software

This article first appeared on the Sanderson Blog

This article was syndicated from Business 2 Community: Is Microsoft Charging You for an Upgrade? 5 Reasons Why Now is the Time to Change Your ERP System

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