Choose an Enterprise Software for Your Business: How-to Guide

By Linda RoperNovember 23, 2022

In today's fast-paced business environment, it's important for companies to adopt an efficient enterprise software solution that can help them stay ahead of their competitors. Before any company makes such an investment, however, it's crucial to know how to choose a software for your business that’s perfect for your needs.

Laptop with mustard coloured background and the words software

In this guide, we outline the 8 key steps to finding the right enterprise software for your business.

Table of Contents

What is an Enterprise Software?

Enterprise software is also referred to as enterprise resource planning (ERP) software. It's often customised for specific business needs and is used to manage large amounts of data across an organisation. It can include everything from accounting software and supply chain management to customer service tools and compliance solutions.

ERP software has many benefits. It can help businesses streamline their operations and increase productivity. It also provides a single source of information that can be used by all employees within an organisation, which can save time and money.

What Does the Enterprise Software Vetting Process Look Like for Your Business?

The vetting process is one of the most important stages in finding the right enterprise software for your business. We’ve listed the 8 key steps in this process below.

Step 1: Know Your ERP Goals and Objectives

First, take some time to consider what you hope to achieve with your ERP software. Do you want a simple product management program that keeps track of inventory? Or a highly integrated enterprise-level system with capabilities ranging from sales order management through manufacturing and supply chain planning?

Hand with sticky note saying set goals

Also, think about the specific objectives that drive your business forward into the future. How will adopting an enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution help support these goals? Can the features provided by this kind of application help meet these objectives in ways that other types simply wouldn't be able to match?

Step 2: Set Your ERP Budget

The next step is to consider how much you want to pay for your new enterprise software.

If your business is new or still in its early stages, it may not be financially feasible to spend thousands of dollars on a new system—especially one that requires ongoing maintenance fees over time.

If you're a startup or small business that only needs basic features like inventory tracking, customer relationship management (CRM), or employee expense management, then there are plenty of free and low-cost options available.

If you have specific requirements that go beyond those basics, then a more expensive all-in-one solution may be needed.

Step 3: Know the Different Types of ERP Software to Consider

Generally speaking, there are two main types of enterprise software: Software as a Service (SaaS) and On-Premise Software.

Software as a Service (SaaS)

This type of ERP is usually hosted on the cloud. It offers many advantages, including lower initial costs, because you don’t have to buy and manage hardware or software like you would with on-premise systems.

SaaS is also more scalable than other types of enterprise software, as you can start with one user and scale up as needed without having to upgrade your system every time your business grows (or shrinks).

Because your data stays in the cloud, it also loads more quickly than if it were stored locally on servers at each location where you might need access to them.

On-Premise Software

The main benefit of on-premise enterprise software is that all data remains within the company's walls. This gives companies more control over their information security, but it also means they must pay for ongoing maintenance, hardware upgrades and software licenses, as well as increased IT support costs associated with managing these systems internally.

Additionally, your data is more difficult to access if you need it on the go, which is a major drawback in today’s mobile world.

Step 4: Compare ERP Vendors

The vendor with the best product for you will be able to provide the most value for your business, so it's essential to shop around for the perfect match.

Check out reviews from other customers who have used these products before, as well as any industry publications that have covered them recently. This way, you'll know what kind of experience people typically have with each provider before deciding which one might work best for your organisation.

Also, consider asking what kind of customer support is available. This can tell you a lot about how effective they'll be if things go wrong!

Step 5: Obtain ERP Software Pricing Quotes

Once you’ve narrowed down your list of potential software providers, it’s time to get pricing quotes.

Most companies will provide a quote based on your business size and needs, but some may ask for further details about individual departments or projects. It's important to be as specific as possible when providing this information so that everyone can clearly understand what each quote refers to (and so there aren't any surprises later).

Step 6: Test Out the Trial Versions of ERP Software

Enterprise software companies usually offer free trial versions of their products. You can then test them out for yourself against the criteria that you've identified as important for your business.

Start my free software trial button

Once you've tested out each solution, you'll be able to make a more informed decision about which enterprise software is right for your company.

Step 7: Consider ERP Software Features and Functionalities

You'll also want to look at how each system will meet your specific business needs and workflows, because this will play a large role in determining which one is right for you. Ask yourself:

  • Are there functions that are extremely important but missing from one or more of these software?

  • How easy is each to use?

  • Does it integrate with the other systems in your business?

  • How many users will this system support?

  • Will training be required for those who aren't familiar with this type of software or any of its features?

Step 8: Check Compatibility and Integration with Your Current System

Before finalising the ERP software you wish to use, it’s essential that you check its compatibility and integration with your current systems. If you are changing systems, make sure the new one can integrate with your old system so that all data is not lost during migration.

Need an All-in-One Expense Management Solution?

We hope this guide has been helpful in demystifying the enterprise software selection process. Remember, it’s important to take your time and do your research so that you can make a confident decision about which type of enterprise software is right for your business.

If your company requires a complete expense management solution, consider ExpenseIn. ExpenseIn brings everything you need to create, approve, and report on expenses into one easy-to-use package.