IDC’s research shows that today’s systems of record are being replaced by new systems of intelligence, which layer in new autonomic and predictive intelligence assets. This revolution, fueled by Digital Transformation, is highly visible in the ERP application suite.
IDC calls this enhanced ERP portfolio “intelligent ERP” (i-ERP) and “intelligent applications” (i-Apps). These products are starting to run businesses in an increasingly digital world.
IDC research shows that by 2018, 35% of line-of-business leaders will demand intelligent enterprise applications to improve business processes and resource utilization. i-ERP’s features, driven by machine learning and advanced analytics, offer multiple opportunities for enterprises to compete in hyper-competitive landscapes. Here are four key examples of the benefits that an i-ERP and application strategy can bring:
1. Resource Optimization
Every enterprise is looking for new, innovative ways to accomplish more with fewer resources, and intelligent ERP systems are tailormade to accomplish this goal. i-ERP applications optimize resources such as human input and interactions, business processes, and the technology itself. These intelligent systems leverage machine learning on massive data sets to enable innovative products and services and drive higher employee productivity, maximizing return on information assets.
An i-ERP system elevates the technology from records management to intelligent systems that learn from exceptions and adapting business rules. This level of context empowers professionals to discover new insights, better predict and plan for outcomes, recommend next best steps, and automate additional processes – creating more efficient resource distribution and utilization. In fact, by 2019, 60% of organizations will measure the change and impact of resource optimization across people, processes, and new i-ERP systems and applications.
2. Reduced Operating Costs
Clearly, one of the main benefits of optimizing resources is to reduce operating costs for the business. i-ERP is not the only business application to use machine learning, cognitive ability, and advanced analytics to cut costs. Major manufacturers in the United States and across the globe have invested heavily in robotics and other automation technologies to increase productivity, lower labor costs, and ensure a better and more consistent level of quality.
From an i-ERP perspective, machine learning capabilities are vast and cut across many functions within the organization. i-ERP can help with procurement and sourcing by analyzing purchasing patterns and automating the next order, eliminating redundancies and additional transactional steps. Real-time cash management, surveillance-based audits and continuous budgeting are more examples of intelligence applied to the finance processes.
Additionally, i-ERP and intelligent applications help augment business processes, making them more efficient, while eliminating some other unnecessary processes entirely. With enterprise executives challenged to make strategic investments and organizational changes that lower costs and create market differentiation, i-ERP is a great long-term solution to help with both objectives.
3. Real Time Analysis and Decision Making
i-ERP applications are capable of processing, analyzing, and acting on massive volumes of data in real time, using in-memory computing (IMC) technologies. This kind of autonomous (or assisted) decision making gives enterprises the agility and flexibility to adapt to obstacles or pivot in real-time, creating a competitive edge in the digital economy.
Additionally, these systems are scalable to enterprises of all sizes and have anytime, anywhere interfaces that drive crucial information flow to the right human parties at the right time. This facilitates better high-level decision making from the workforce. This emphasis on agility through timely collection and analyzing of data will further drive enterprises to push their ERP solutions into the cloud; in fact, IDC predicts that by 2020, 40% of large organizations will have at least 60% of their ERP applications in the public cloud.
4. Enhanced User Experience
i-ERP applications feature an assistive and conversational user experience (UX) by automating a set of high-volume repeatable tasks and augmenting the performance of less frequent, more novel tasks through human–machine interaction. This assistive UX is a key differentiator for i-ERP versus older legacy systems. The i-ERP system isn’t just easier for employees to use; the technology actively works to make employees more efficient and effective within their job roles. The experience provides guidance on the next best action on tasks ranging from customers and suppliers, to hiring and financial actions such as payments and collection.
Furthermore, the UX is designed specifically for mobile-first for convenience and availability – i-ERP is designed with worker behaviors and styles in mind. That’s why by 2018, assistive and conversational UX will be a primary differentiator in the selection of at least 40% of ERP systems and associated applications.
By 2020, 30% of Global 1000 CEOs will be strategically planning significant resource shifts from human to intelligent systems, cutting across multiple functions and processes. i-ERP, along with other key intelligent applications, will be the technologies that these DX-minded executives turn to so they can remain competitive.
Intelligent ERP can be revolutionary for your organization, but there is a learning curve. Learn how to set your employees up for success with our free ebook, “How to Prepare Your Employees for the Shift to Intelligent ERP.”