A Guide to ERP for Service Organizations

The following is an ERP Podcast hosted by TechnologyEvaluation.com

Podcast Title: A Guide to ERP for Service Organizations

Excerpt:

Enterprise resource planning (ERP) is enabling service organizations to streamline service delivery, optimize operations, and improve customer satisfaction. In this podcast, TEC analyst Neil Stolovitsky sits down with Oracle’s Ted Kempf for his take on the unique implementation requirements of ERP systems for professional service organizations, as well as the role technology plays in running a successful service business. Ted brings a wealth of experience as an industry analyst and marketing executive in the consulting, systems integration and enterprise project management software industry.

The podcast examines some of the following questions:

  1. What makes the professional services industry different, when implementing an ERP system?
  2. What are the key pain points professional services organizations are struggling with?
  3. Is service-oriented architecture (SOA) applicable to professional services organizations and their technology strategies? Why or why not?

Some Key Points

Talks about three main service organizations categories and it’s ERP functions

  • Consulting – Project Management
  • Business services – Service Level Agreement, CRM, Service Contract, Field Services
  • Staffing - CRM, HR, Financials, Project Management

Challenges

  • Internal billing rate
  • Retaining in house expertis
  • Getting most utilization from resources without burning them out
  • Driving successful engagements
  • Financial control

Technology

  • SOA (Service Oriented Architecture)
  • Business process orientation
  • Business activity monitoring

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My Comments

There’s really no one single product that can best fit your service organization. However there are products like those offered by Oracle as mentioned in the podcast which attempts to group some key functions around main service industries such as the consulting, business services and staffing organization.

Even if there is an ERP product which has all the key features such as Project Management, CRM, Financial Management, Resource Management, etc, your service organization would need to determine which area to focus on to maximise productivity and efficiency especially on business processes.

Attempting to implement and apply all ERP functions at one go can be massive and overwhelming for both the implementors and business users. The key to a successful ERP implementation for service organization is deep understanding of internal business processes and the ability to identify areas which could be further improved and enhanced with key ERP capabilities.

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