Of course, ERP applications can change. But it'll cost you. In customizations. In change and process management. In upgrades. A typical company, notes the CFO study, will spend an average of $1.2 million each year to maintain, modify and update its ERP system.
Oracle, for instance, will heavily discount license pricing upfront but will, rest assured, make that up on the backend - from its 22 percent maintenance and support fees, on which it does not negotiate.
CIOs, too, can play a starring role in limiting costly customizations, by educating and imploring business managers and users why customisation, in the long run, is often not the better route. But that task is never easy.
"Companies grow and change, acquiring new business lines and divesting themselves of others. They open new facilities or consolidate operations, add partners or outsource functions, centralise or decentralise the back office. Reporting requirements increase as regulatory bodies heighten oversight and as companies expand across borders.... In short, businesses change, and as they do, so do management's information needs."
1 : voluntary choice or decision I do this of my own free will 2 : freedom of humans to make choices that are not determined by prior causes or by divine intervention
Values have shrunken to fantastic levels; taxes have risen; our ability to pay has fallen; government of all kinds is faced by serious curtailment of income; the means of exchange are frozen in the currents of trade; the withered leaves of industrial enterprise lie on every side; farmers find no markets for their produce; the savings of many years in thousands of families are gone.
In contrast, Motorola, HP, Sony and GM -- four of the world's best ticking clocks -- all had their first products fail in the marketplace. Sony's first product, for example, was a cooker, which failed. Minnesota Mining & Manufacturing began life as a failed corundum mine, thus leaving 3Mers to ask, "OK, that failed, what else can we do?" Hewlett-Packard had a number of product failures, ranging from electronic bowling alley sensors to automatic urinal flusher, before it hit upon the audio oscilloscope. These failures taught humility and focused attention not on the products, but on developing the organizational ability to come up with excellent products, to take those products to market, to service customers, and so on.
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