Legacy vs. Next-Gen ERP: Should I Stay, or Should I Go?

May 6, 2022
Phil Maehr

‘Legacy Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP)’ is a common IT term that refers to the software being outdated or lacking modern support/features. These legacy ERPs can sometimes be viewed in a negative light, with distributors attempting to avoid using a legacy ERP at all costs. But the truth is, that a distributor’s operations often depend on these tried-and-true legacy ERP systems. If you’re currently on a legacy ERP and not sure if you should stay where you are or consider migrating to a next-gen modern ERP solution – you’re going to want to read on.

Enhancement Options for Your Legacy ERP System

You’ve invested a lot into your current legacy ERP over the years and it may be lacking some of the functionality you want as you look to the future of your business. But here are some points to consider if you are contemplating a new ERP. These options give you access to additional functionality for your legacy ERP at a fraction of the cost of purchasing, implementing, and educating employees on a next-gen solution.

  • Review the features and functionalities offered in the current and future releases.
  • Perform a foundational review of all existing modules.
  • Create a technology atmosphere for success by addressing network infrastructure.
  • Consider current bandwidth requirements fostering remote connectivity.
  • Explore Hybrid cloud hosting options.
  • Identify integrated independent software vendor (ISV) solutions that provide the best ROI.
  • Develop a strategic five-year Information Technology Plan.
  • Secure executive sponsorship and support.

Are you thinking about extending the capabilities inside your legacy ERP but not sure where to start? Consider Aktion Associates’ three-step process to begin digital transformation inside your legacy ERP environment.

Legacy ERP Digital Transformation

  1. Assess
    • Consider a Software Utilization Assessment (SUA). During this assessment, a senior qualified engineer from Aktion will go on-site to your location and observe how employees from all facets of your operation use your legacy ERP. They will then take their findings and produce a report with insight into how you can get more out of your current software. Oftentimes, you have the functionality inside your current ERP solution but don’t have it enabled.
  2. Identify
  3. Execute
    • Using the information collected from steps one and two Aktion will create a statement of work (SOW) & implementation plan to start the digital transformation of your legacy ERP.

How to Identify When to Consider a New Next-Gen ERP

There may come a time when your current legacy ERP system no longer fits your unique business needs. We’ve compiled a list of the most common reasons to consider a new next-gen ERP.

  • Extended Functionality Doesn’t Provide Enough
    • If you’ve investigated upgrading to the current version of your software and adding ISV solutions won’t give you the functionality you need.
  • Too Many Workarounds
    • If a significant portion of your operations can no longer be supported by your legacy ERP solution and manual workarounds have been created.
  • Over a Five-Year Plan
    • If your company is going to be in operation for longer than five years and you want a more modern solution to streamline manual processes.
  • Lost Your In-house Expert
    • If you lost a key employee who knew the legacy ERP well and your operations revolved around them supporting the system.
  • Mobile Functionality
    • If you want to grant your employees access to your ERP software anytime, anywhere in the cloud but moving your current legacy ERP to the Aktion Cloud doesn’t fit your needs.

If you’re considering a modern next-gen ERP system, we’d recommend that you look at Infor CloudSuite Distribution (CSD). Infor CSD is a cloud-based, industry-specific ERP solution built to meet the needs of modern, growth-oriented distributors. We’ve compiled a library of short videos that show the features and functionality you’ll experience inside the platform.

At the end of the day, the decision to keep your existing legacy ERP or move to a new next-gen ERP is up to you. There isn’t a magic eight ball you can shake that’s going to give you the right answer. But after reading this blog you’re armed with the knowledge to make a more educated decision on whether you should stay on your legacy ERP or go to a next-gen ERP.