Q1. ERP stands for “enterprise,” “resources” and “planning.” Briefly explain what and how ERP systems promise to offer better than traditional (non-ERP) information systems do, in terms of “enterprise,” “resources” and “planning.” Considering the reality of ERP systems use, to what extent do you think those promises on “E,” “R” and “P” have panned out? Justify briefly.
There are several ways in which Enterprise Resource Planning systems promise to offer better than traditional non-ERP information systems. The “Enterprise” in ERP refers to the scope of an entire organization. ERP offers the promise of a smooth flow of information across an entire organization and a standardized environment with one information system that is, a shared database, independent of integrated applications while traditional non ERP limits communication across an organization due to its lack of integration. ERP due to its design also promotes connectivity outside an organization.
The “R” refers to the different human resources, financial resources, products, customers and capital resources. This also offers more promise than traditional (non-ERP) information systems because these business processes are independent, yet integrated /interdependent which offer companies a competitive edge, reduces multiple data entries.
The “P” refers to planning. This is especially where ERP systems offer the most promise because not only does the integration of the systems offer benefits to an organization, ERP offers organizational wide planning which supports strategic decision making. For example if the marketing and sales department of an organization is not sharing data, this may lead to lack of effective planning.
ERP has fulfilled its promise in terms of planning. For most companies, it acts as a planning backbone for their core competencies by pulling together from across the company, the various processes through data. In terms of “E” has successfully integrated the system by pulling together various data from across the company and sharing data from these processes with other corporate ERP systems.
Q2. ERP implementation and BPR are often viewed as companions. Describe two actual examples on how a firm had successful ERP implementation outcomes with BPR. Should successful ERP implementation be always accompanied by BRP? Take your position, and state at least two reasons.
Several companies have successfully implemented ERP with BPR such as Ford Motors who reengineered their accounts payable process after implementing ERP. This move increased the speed of payments and enhanced company relations with suppliers. Another company was CITGA Corporation, who reengineered their processes to improve their customer service.
A large Midwestern hospital sore to implement ERP aith BPR. To do this, they got MBA students to interview managers team members who were in managerial positions, and who were familiar with BPR/ERP. They also interview staffs who were involved in the project planning and implementation in the hospital. The MBA students developed an open ended questionnaire to be used for the BPR project. After the survey and careful research, the hospital decided to implement SAP for developing an integrated system that uses best practices.
I think implementing BPR and ERP is a strategic decision that mostly depends on the goal of the organization and the time and resources the company is willing to commit. Because ERP is an investment for the future, I think that most companies that implement BPR are interested in changing their business processes, and successful implementation is determined by numerous factors including future ROI .which is why I think a successful implementation should always be accompanied by BRP. A combination of BPR and ERP help to improve operations in an organization with essential problems...
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