In the 1980s, with the advent of the PC, spreadsheets initially ruled to create processes, which then developed into individual pieces of software. In seeking efficiencies in software programs, they were combined into one program —"Enterprise Resource Planning", commonly known as ERPs. But in combining the tools, the complexity of the software grew exponentially. Each feature and functionality added rigidity to the software, and limited the ability to innovate. Due to the connectivity of features across the software, they literally cannot change.
Your ERP handles all your financial management, including accounts payable/receivable, cash management, invoicing, financial reporting, payroll, benefits administration, performance management, training, resource management, and dozens of other functions —but each of these features is done in a limited way.
What you're seeing these days is the second generation of software - the connectivity of specialty tools. Salesforce and Hubspot have taken over for Sales, Asana and Monday for Project Management, and Workday and BambooHR for Payroll. Because of their ability to innovate, these tools deliver a more intuitive interface with 20-30x better features and overall user experience than your ERP.
Ultimately, there are two potential futures. 1. The ERP remains the overarching financial tool, providing core reporting of aggregated data across disparate tools. 2. The ERP is supplemented with a system of disparate tools all integrated, with data lakes providing the central repository of data. The later offering organizations significantly more flexibility to create a system perfectly tailored to their needs.
Specialty resource management software
Resource management is one of the most critical business functions and next to be pulled out of the ERP, which makes sense since it was the last program to be developed during the advent of the PC for the functions listed above.
Here are the top five reasons you should be using specialty purpose resource management software to get an immediate impact on efficiency:
- Complexity: ERPs are complex systems with many features and functions that can be difficult for users to navigate, learn and use effectively, especially if you aren’t familiar with the system or have limited technical expertise. While people are often blamed, complicated ERP systems are the main reason for low usage. You need a user-friendly tool that anyone can start using on their first day.
- Slowness: The complexity of trying to do everything in one system can dramatically slow things down. In a modern business world, teams are busier than ever and need their resource management software to be lightning-fast in order to keep systems updated and respond to business changes. They don't have time to enter information in five clicks when it can be done in two.
- Lack of flexibility: ERPs are typically designed with rigid structures that need to be more easily customizable to fit the unique needs of different organizations, and the cost of customization is often high. This inflexibility can lead to inefficiencies and difficulties in adapting to changes in the business environment. Resource management software should be fully customizable to the way you work.
- Limited reporting: While most ERPs have Business Intelligence functionality, they don't provide the depth of resource management reporting and analytics needed for effective people management. With easy to understand reports for workload, backlog, and role demand, you can identify trends and understand your resource management needs.
- No Innovation: ERPs lack the latest AI and Machine Learning for resource management. Managing people is arguably the most important function, particularly when selling time, and the latest advancements in AI unlock powerful features for managing people.