The Year Ahead for ERP: Top Influencers Predictions for 2020

December 17, 2019 by Elizabeth Quirk 

What are the can’t miss ERP trends for 2020? Over the years, we’ve seen ERP software evolve to adapt to ever-changing business needs, customer demands, and enterprise technology innovations. Today, we may be seeing a totally different kind of ERP than what was available twenty or thirty years ago.

Pete Zimmerman, North American Software Sales Manager at VAI

“We’ve seen more businesses move towards the cloud this past year, so I can only see cloud-based ERP solutions growing in popularity next year, ultimately driving stronger business results for organizations. Businesses are becoming increasingly complex and harnessing more data than ever before, not to mention that many industries have their own personalization and regulatory needs.”

“To meet these demands, the cloud has evolved to be the best answer for ERP providers and customers for 2020. With cloud-based storage options, software applications can be employed faster and at a larger scale. Cloud-based ERP also provides the flexibility and cost-efficiency that organizations need to compete in a rapidly evolving market. ERP will give companies the boost to move beyond completing simple IT tasks to creating real technological change.”

Eric Kimberling, Founder of Third Stage Consulting Group

“The industry is going through a seismic shift over the next few years. Cloud adoption, shoring up the deficiencies of flagship ERP systems, and unreasonable customer pressure from vendors and systems integrators are just some of the things that CXOs and transformation project teams need to navigate.”

“To complicate matters, industry players are doubling down on their biases and one-size-fits-all, silver bullet offerings. There is a lot of money at stake for various industry players, so biases are creeping into every nook and cranny of ERP RFP processes and procurement initiatives. ERP vendors may be partying like it’s 1999, but this isn’t necessarily a good thing for customers.”

“Finally, there are plenty of upstarts waiting in the wings to capitalize on the voids left by the big players. While SAP is imposing its 2025 deadline on customers, for example, Service Now, Workday, and other best of breed solutions stand to excel where the big vendors are deficient. This can be a difficult technology and transformation landscape for customers to navigate.”

Brian Kracik, Senior Director of Product Marketing, Oracle

“Some of the trends we’re seeing ERP, in particular, is a change to how people access the information and the needs of those folks. We’re seeing a bigger movement to the cloud. It’s not just one cloud however. We’re seeing more contact centers being distributed, non-monolithic, work from home agents, or remote agents. This creates a multi-cloud environment, which creates a degradation the quality of your experience. To rectify this, more companies will need to rethink their networks. SD-WAN (software defined wide area network) will become a major player, as it has the capability to deliver the security, reliability, and quality of experience that you come to expect from these applications.”

Cindy Jutras, President of Mint Jutras R&A, Inc.

“Whereas fit and functionality once drove most decisions, basic and even not so basic features and functions are table stakes today. While an 80% fit used to be acceptable, today’s flexible and technology-enabled solutions should get you much closer to 100% than ever before, without the need for invasive customization. Of course, you still need to perform due diligence and confirm robust functionality, including industry-specific features and functions, but if you haven’t looked around for awhile, expect to be pleasantly surprised.”

Kevin Beasley, CIO at VAI

“Analytics leveraging AI will also be a big push in ERP next year. Predictive tools available in an ERP solution are already being used to make smarter business decisions based on past history, but with the addition of AI, this technology will have a big impact on how industries can utilize their ERP portfolio. Predictive analytics with AI will help companies in manufacturing, retail and more industries optimize inventory and better track supply and demand. While robotic automation is also set to transform warehouses, ERP software with analytic and AI capabilities is the first step towards creating an automated supply chain that many executives envision for 2020. Overall, ERP will continue to mature in its technological offerings to give companies a full, well-rounded solution for all of their digital needs.”

David Stephans, CRO of Rootstock Software

“I think the big thing we see in ERP for 2020 in the markets we focus on, which are manufacturing, distribution and supply chain, is a move to the cloud. To the true cloud. It think too many companies today in their efforts to digitally transform, get closer to the customer, better respond to their customer demands, react to changes in the supply chain, and be responsive, are held back by legacy technology that isn’t connected, isn’t flexible, and isn’t modern. So I think we’ll continue to see manufacturing, distribution and supply chain companies move to next-generation cloud technologies.”