Back in the 1950s, when most of the manufacturing companies were in dire need to have a system to capture their production data, calculate the inventory, and plan the production – IBM came up with the term Material Resource Planning (MRP).
MRP was a heavy software running on huge and costly mainframes. Only those companies with deep pockets had the power to have MRPs for better planning. Then a company by the name “Systems Applications and Products”, which is now called SAP, came up with the concept of software that helps the manufacturers with the concepts of MRP but works in real-time and by adding more features and capabilities to better manage the production planning.
Then came the term “Enterprise Resource Planning – ERP” in the late 1990s. Enterprise software with connected modules/business functions like Accounting, HR, Engineering, and Project Management along with the core modules that are part of MRP.
The objective of ERP was to give a company or the management real-time access to data from different business functions for them to take timely decisions for the business.
At the basic level, the concept of ERP connects and integrates all the business functions of the business and streamlines the processes. The core of an ERP system is to have shared access to information across the business functions to drive smooth and seamless functioning of the operations.
By 2005, ERP has moved from a standalone client-server model to a cloud-based implementation thereby reducing the overall cost of ownership and providing access anytime-anywhere to authorized users. With the concept Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) model, the ERP is deployed in a cloud server accessed through Rest APIs, on mobile browsers, and also as a mobile application with optimized access.
So, what is in the Roadmap for the next decade?
Or maybe a decade is too long a time to see the next evolution with the pace at which the technology is changing and also the changing dynamics among the companies to adopt the emerging technologies.
We at Digitalleaf Solutions attempted to define a maturity score for a typical ERP operation based on how a task is done (from completely manual to Task Level Automation to à Process Automation including Intelligence).
The Scoring Table
Let's look at some examples to find out the maturity score of the operations
Onboarding a Customer/Supplier
Contract Management Process
Digitalleaf Solutions has identified Focus Areas (from Purchase Order management - Contract Management, Sales Order Management, Onboarding, Accounts Payable/Receivable business functions) within the ERP operations that can be brought into the scope of Automation to make an ERP, a No-Touch ERP.
We have been working with many of the Sage X3 customers to transform their processes by Digitizing the operations and bringing in a strategic approach to the Digital Transformation journey.
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