What is ERP? – Enterprise Resource Planning

Definition: Enterprise Resource Planning is the integrated management of main business processes, often in real-time and brought about by software and technology. On a farm, this would mean that business processes such as planting, harvesting, spraying, taking on labour, clocking, finances and human resources can all be integrated into a single software solution.

The benefits of implementing ERP software includes:

  • ERP systems enforce real-time capturing of business data, which means real-time business information can be reported on;
  • no longer having to capture the same data into multiple software programs and Excel spreadsheets;
  • shared databases can be used for various purposes, eliminating numerous sources for reporting purposes;
  • opportunities for employees to learn new skills by taking technology to lower levels in the business;
  • the integration of business processes saves time and money;
  • standardised naming conventions are enforced across the company, for example, chemical codes and descriptions in inventory and spray records;
  • consolidates securing business data by bringing it together in one application.

Barriers to entry:

  • ERP software and the implementation thereof can be expensive, and it is difficult to quantify the benefits that it will bring to the business. This makes cost-benefit analysis quite tricky.

At the end of the day, an ERP system needs to work for the business and not the business for the system.

Published by Udette Kruger

Passionate about agriculture, technology and using both to make the world a healthier and happier place.

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