The late nineties were the heyday of ERP. These large packages allowed you to tackle a lot of things; from purchases to planning, and from relation management to production. At the time, it was an enormous step forward. But in this item you will find out why you would rather go for a combination of specialistic tools in the digital age.
It seemed so nice: an all-in-one solution for your manufacturing business. A one-time purchase for a package that would practically support all your business processes from that point on. And it did go well for a long time, but soon enough big challenges reared their head. Because such a package is expected to support a large number of different processes and types of businesses, you would end up with a massive amount of settings. Moreover, it turned out that customization was needed more often: because your logistic process didn’t completely fit within the standard solution, you paid a small fortune on customization solutions and the corresponding consultancy. With that, Legacy Software overshot its target. And thanks to the rise of the internet we know that it can be done differently.
Since we’ve all gone online, more and more specialistic tools have been made available. Small pieces of software that are incredibly good at supporting individual business processes. Think genius planning software, fantastic programs to control CRM, and state-of-the-art configuration software. We call this ‘best-of-breed’, a term you might also hear at dog shows. We like to call it ‘the best horse in the stable’.
Best-of-breed brings a number of large advantages in comparison to traditional all-in-one-solutions:
Most specialistic tools are emphatically designed to meet your needs. And since it only has to carry out one task really well, you won’t be overwhelmed by an uncountable number of other functions. On top of that, often very flexible possibilities to connect with other applications are available, turning this into a very future-proof solution. For instance, you can easily add new tools or replace existing tools.
This flexibility mostly originates in the fact that we do everything in the cloud these days. By working in the cloud, you are able to connect APIs from one tool to another in a relatively quick and easy manner. In the past all of this had to be done on premise: the server of your business had to gain a custom solution to support new functionalities. And customization costs a lot of time and money. It is much better to have someone employed who can connect it all by themselves with a few lines of code. Which immediately leads us to the only disadvantage in best-of-breed.
When you choose best-of-breed, you choose the future. Yet it is necessary to create connections between different specialistic tools, and this won’t handle itself. You end up with a dispersed IT-landscape, and this landscape has to be built and maintained. In turn, this requires the right people. So when you do choose best-of-breed, you also choose to employ or educate people for it. People who are technically able to connect everything you might need, now and in the future.
Are you curious about our best-of-breed configuration software? Request a demo. When you choose to work with Elfsquad, we will of course help you train your employees, so that you take in the necessary knowledge and truly go for a future-proof solution.
Elfsquad removes all worries from your pre-production process. With Elfsquad as backbone, we realize the digital factory that smart industries have been trying to find for so long. We do this through a product configurator, with integrated solutions for marketing, sales, and operations.