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Microsoft commissioned study reveals the ERP priorities for IT decision makers

Microsoft has recently revealed results from a commissioned study into what IT decision makers in businesses prioritised with regards to ERP solutions. 

You usually find that this sort of study should be taken with a pinch of salt as some of it is very much stating the obvious. This is largely due to the fact that most of the research consists of broad answers that the vendor had already came up with and are usually similar to ones reported in previous studies on the subject from the same vendor. 

When going through the report you will find that Microsoft has delivered something which identifies the following ERP goals in terms of priority in their findings: 

  • 35% want to improve workplace productivity 
  • 22% want to run smarter operations 
  • 19% want to innovate with a modern and adaptable platform 
  • 18% want to automate and streamline supply chain 
  • 8% want to improve financial performance. 

From the above, it is very much stating the obvious as to what IT decision makers want to achieve when it comes to ERP goals and the whole purpose of an ERP system. They are designed to put a limit on the friction occurring within a business. The above goals are the main result of doing just that. The main issue that customers want to be able to identify is – where can the friction be found?  

Apart from the Microsoft study stating many obvious things, there are some quite useful nuggets of information that have also been contained in it this time round when it comes to the results of the top 5 ERP challenges in businesses: 

  • 35% believe a challenge exists in security and compliance 
  • 29% believe a challenge exists in heavy upfront expenditure 
  • 28% believe a challenge exists as it's too costly to maintain and upgrade 
  • 24% believe a challenge exists with too many disparate systems/data silos 
  • 23% believe a challenge exists with highly customised ERPs 

It doesn’t come as a surprise that a high ERP implementation cost or upgrading your existing ERP are top of the list. 

The thing that strikes us the most from this report is the fact that security & compliance are at the top of the list which reflects a shift. What is the reasoning behind this, I hear you ask? 

In previous years, customers haven’t felt that their ERP systems were a security risk due to the data being contained in a siloed environment. However, this is now a growing concern with more and more systems being integrated into the ERP. Furthermore, this risk is heightened as users are now able to access the ERP remotely and from almost any device from any location. 

Microsoft has been heavily involved in moulding this shift towards the Cloud with their integrated agenda really starting to pay off for them. This is driven by the fact that Power BI, Microsoft 365, Dynamics 365 Business Central & Azure are now fully integrated making them one of the market leaders in the global market. 

Also, a rapid increase in the overall number of ransomware attacks has led to more concern around this. Being able to ensure a business is able to post cash, print and invoice now falls under the remit of the CFO and this report helps to demonstrate an increased concern. 

This is where the Dynamics NAV/Business Central partners have been evolving to meet the demands faced by customers by collating biz app know-how in line with a better IT service capability. 

On the other side of the coin, the more things that develop, the more things don’t change. The most efficient projects tend to have the best alignment between both the partner and the customer and the expertise and know-how on how to successfully deliver a project. 

If you are looking to access this report in full you can do this by downloading it

Next Steps? 

If you are a business that is looking to move from NAV to Business Central or looking to implement a cost-effective ERP system such as Business Central for the first time then please do give us a call so we can run through all the options. 

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