School of Information Systems

ERP Software and Vendor Research

In Business world, the selection of a vendor that best meets the needs and long-term direction of the company is a critical first step in a successful implementation. In selecting a vendor, a well-understood selection process will need to be utilized. The primary functions of ERP are to integrate the inter-departmental operation procedures and Management Information System (MIS) modules, and to reallocate the resources of a company. For example, selection of system suppliers and contract negotiation during the ERP implementation of a local construction company in Taiwan. 

The first problem that they have is: coding system, working process reengineering, priority of ERP functionality implementation, Customization, participant roles, and performance level of subcontractor, which also affected the implementation. The first thing if a company wants to purchase a High-Level ERP process is to deep vendor research and gather all the information from the research at one table, and then do the demonstration and evaluation. This is very important because if the ERP does not match the usage of the company, it will be useless, and the company will bankrupt. Next one is needs and requirement assessment. This is continuity from the second one, if the demonstration is matched and a company is already comfortable with the chosen vendor then they will be going to developing request for bid or make a proposal, and then releasing request for bid to vendors. And then the vendor will analyse and selecting the best possible deals, they start with Evaluation of the bids, Functional Evaluation, Technical Evaluation, Vendor-detailed demonstrations, Contact References, Develop of total cost of ownership. And under the Vendor Negotiation, contains a contract review and change, pricing- software, maintenance, and consulting support, and the last one is Purchase process. From the case study in Taiwan, they are suggested that additional case studies are necessary for the successful application of ERP system in the construction industry. There is a short list of ERP vendors that make it to the top, as follows : 

  • SAP  

Solutions are for all types of industries and for every major market. Its products include mySAP Business Suite, SAP NetWeaver, etc. 

  • Oracle/PeopleSoft  

Providing a solution divided by industry category. 

  • Lawson 

Providing industry tailored software solution 

  • SSA Global 

Claim to offer solution that accomplish specific goals in shorter time frames. 

  • Great Plains  

Part of the Microsoft Business Solution group of products, its solutions can be tailored according to business needs. 

  • Epicor 

Focuses on enterprise software solutions for mid-market companies. 

  • Infor Visual 

Flexible, fully integrated, and east-to-use ERP suite that is widely deployed across many industries from aerospace to biomedical, capital equipment, precision tools, etc.  

  • Plex online  

Providing a full suite of enterprise resource planning, manufacturing execution system, and supply chain management solutions. 

 A company need a matching user requirement to Feature, to make the user more comfortable using their application, but how? by identification and documentation of user and system requirements can be done by documenting current legacy system functionality or by using business process re-engineering. There is also a Major document that needed: Data and functional flow of departmental or business processes, and table or description of functions in each department and the level of importance of each function. Identifying vendor system functionality based on documented processes will help to purchase a system based on facts. 

Last thing that they are going to do is Implications for management. Management must play a role in choosing the right system that will meet the company’s needs and requirements. Discussion and negotiating with the vendors are important to talk about future improvements and scheduled direction but takes more time. In the end it will yield a better purchase price. 


Biagy Erlangga