With the substantial growth of modern ERP software in the cloud, such as Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance & Operations, more and more companies are choosing the standard solution as their ERP software, where previously customization was almost always chosen. This shift to standard ERP is not without reason. In this blog we let three HSO customers talk about why a standard ERP solution is the right choice for them when migrating to cloud-based ERP.
HSO customer Mustad: “Best practices are best practices for a reason“.
Staying as close to the standard as possible has many advantages. Especially if you want to implement one way of working, for example in an international environment, as Mustad does. Mustad Hoofcare, an international manufacturer and supplier of products for the farrier, is in the midst of a digital transformation. Part of this transformation is the international rollout of a new ERP standard, Dynamics 365 Finance & Operations.
Mayra Mouthaan, Group CFO at Mustad, has a clear vision of the success factors that are important in such a complex implementation. Mayra: “Rule 1: keep it simple. Don’t try to change too much too quickly and keep your project manageable. Rule 2: stick to the scope, otherwise you will lose your focus and you will not be able to deliver on time. Rule 3: stick to the standard. Best practices are best practices for a reason, even if it means revising your business processes.”
Erik Lokhorst, Manager of Operations at Mustad, also shares this view of standard ERP and associated best practices. Particularly to ensure confidence in the application. Erik: “I see significant advantages to sticking to the ERP standard as much as possible. Of course, customization is possible, but with each upgrade there is a risk of problems. If your ERP application is updated every month, all the modifications can cause delays and possibly issues. The risk is then that colleagues will no longer trust the software and that acceptance of the system will decrease.”
ERP standard at HSO customer Caldic: one size fits all as a starting point
For Caldic, supplier for food, cosmetics, pharma and industrial markets worldwide, the standard is an important starting point of the IT strategy. This helps the fast-growing company, with branches worldwide, to keep a grip on the application landscape.
Ton Arrachart, CIO at Caldic: “Our IT strategy is based on ‘one-size-fits-all’. In responding to all the wishes of the various teams for the ERP, we try to remain as close as possible to the standard. Our group IT center in Rotterdam directs and assists the local teams. HSO supports us by managing the rollouts to the regions and countries based on the standard template that we determined together.”
HSO recently performed the ERP standard migration assessment at Caldic to explore the impact of a possible migration to the cloud. One of the outcomes was that the company wants to stay even closer to standard functionality. Caldic also sees plenty of opportunities for the Microsoft Power Platform, for example to automate administrative processes in a smart way.
Where above we mainly mentioned the advantages of the standard, there are of course also disadvantages. It is undeniable that every company has its own unique processes. They allow you to distinguish yourself in the market. But you no longer need to regulate these processes with costly and difficult to maintain customizations. Low code platforms such as the Microsoft Power Platform fill this gap and offer endless possibilities to build apps and reports and to easily connect third party apps. You can read more about that here.
BUVA: with new ERP standard is the norm.
BUVA homecare systems selected HSO in 2020 for the migration from AX 2009 to Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations. Mariska Aarts, Financial Director at BUVA: “We would like to innovate more and improve our internal processes, but AX 2009, with all the customization we have built on top of it, is currently standing in the way of upgrading and innovating too much. If we wanted to make a small change, it would require a whole series of modifications.”
What we also see with customers is that ERP is a relatively smaller and smaller part of the complete application landscape. For more and more processes, think of customer-oriented processes, such as customer service, but also for example BI, applications are used that are linked to the ERP. This also played an important role for BUVA in the choice of the ERP standard.
Mariska: “When we implemented AX 2009 a few years ago, customization was more or less the norm. Now, with ERP, standard is the starting point. Moreover, if we soon run on the Microsoft cloud-based platform, we will be able to use all the associated applications much better and also offer new forms of service faster, such as subscriptions and IoT applications.”