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The Mod Squad: Questions to Ask About ERP Software Modifications

The Mod Squad: Questions to Ask About ERP Software Modifications

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The Mod Squad: Questions to Ask About ERP Software Modifications

Dec 29, 2021

Aptean Staff Writer
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So you've been looking at ERP software systems for a while, and have come to an inescapable conclusion: in order for any software system to work with your business, you're going to need modifications. A plain vanilla, out-of-the-box solution isn't going to work for you.

Relax. Most best-in-breed ERP systems allow modifications. Here are a few considerations to help you understand your choices before committing to a modified solution.

Code or Tools?

How will your modifications be created? Will modifications be coded directly into the software, changing the source code of the ERP solution? Will they be provided through an add-on program coded from scratch? Or, will the changes be achieved through tools in the software itself which allow mods to be made? Each option has its advantages and drawbacks, and your software provider should be able to explain why they've chosen any particular path.

Updates and Upgrades?

How will the modifications affect periodic updates or upgrades? Most software systems require occasional patching or security fixes, and many of those updates are delivered and installed automatically. If the code of your software is altered to create the modification, you run the risk of not being able to accept those periodic updates. Also, when new versions of the software are released, your software provider should be able to give you a clear idea of how your modifications can be ported to work in the new version.

Are You Avoiding Best Practices?

Your workflows are precious to your organization, but it never hurts to ask: does the plain-vanilla workflow of the ERP solution represent a best-practice that you should look into? Are your business requirements based on methods that would be better served by tried-and-true methods instead of accepted workarounds?

Be Aware That the Industry is Changing

With better programming languages, more flexible development platforms and a greater reliance on cloud technologies, modern ERP solutions are changing rapidly. The old industry saw that "modifications mean broken updates" or "you need to adjust to the software" simply aren't true anymore.

Many new ERP solutions use customization tools to achieve the modifications you need without modifying a line of code, and are designed to accept future updates and upgrades without breaking your specified functionality.

When you're doing your shopping, ask your software provider for the skinny, and don't be afraid to challenge the conventional wisdom about modifications. Aptean is ready to tailor an ERP for your specific industry. We also offer personalized demos so you can see the platform in action for yourself. Reach out today.

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