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ERP Systems Production Support's role in Continuous Improvement

"As you wander on through life, whatever may be your goal,
keep your eye upon the doughnut, and not upon the hole."
Deborah Osgood, Chief Architect and Cofounder of

I recently came across a good article on ITtoolbox Blogs entitled Building a "SAP Support Model". The author, Bob White, outlines a step by step approach for building an ERP support model. This article was SAP-centric. This model also aims to support and solve the technical issues that you would find. Great if you are looking to only support your IT investment.
The question is, having made such a great investment in your system, and then this ongoing cost of supporting your application, how can you sweat this asset to drive real business benefit and continuous business improvement?

The answer lies in understanding the Continuous Business Improvement cycle for ERP systems. This cycle of
  1. Adopting (the ERP system);
  2. Sustaining (customizing, implementing and supporting the ERP system); and
  3. Exploiting (driving business benefit from your ERP system)
This is what aligns technology-based business improvement to business strategy. The illustration above shows this cycle more clearly. Once the ERP system has been implemented, and is stablised with an effective support model (as the article above describes it); then it is time to make System Support a cornerstone of initiatives to drive real business benefits.

How does System Support help drive continuous improvement?

  • Great support data gathered from users that will point to improvement opportunities.
  • Issues identified by System Support are related directly to the ERP system. Any changes to address these issues will exploit the system capabilities - 'sweat the asset'.
  • System Support team are often well positioned between Solution Managers who understand the system capabilities; the users who identify opportunities for improvement; and the deployment teams who can make the changes happen.

How can you apply this to smaller businesses? Look into the capabilities of your current applications and the needs of your users to identify opportunities to drive productivity and improvement via automation in your business. No need to reinvent the wheel. Use what you have.Keep your eye on the doughnut around and not on the hole ...


rachel said...

will serve as a great guidance. nice blog. keep it coming.
erp implementation

raj patil said...

Nice Post !!!
I truly like to reading your post.
Post is very informative and all the points are very easy to understand. ERP software is must needed for our business. Eresource provides process manufacturing solution that covers complete range of services ranging from supply of raw material, production, manufacturing and packing. Process Manufacturing ERP Software helps the Decision makers to manage the business with a click of their mouse's button.
Thanks for sharing such a nice post...

ramdin khan said...

Great Blog...
I like the way you written the post.
All the points are very informative and easy to undersatnd.
ERP systems integrate all business management functions, including planning.ERP system provides the solid operational backbone.
Thanks for sharing such a nice post on Benifts of ERP...

Serena Thomson said...

Implementing ERP in an organization depends upon that whether it could yield necessary benefits rather than the troublemaker.

Cloud Based ERP India

Elanthendral said...

Great Article..It was very informative..I need more details from your side..include some tips..I am working in Erp In India

yamini said...

Great Article..It was very informative..I need more details from your side..include some tips..I am working in Cloud Erp In Chennai