Businesses must ensure they are choosing the right Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system, but that’s not the only thing to consider — it’s also essential to find the right partner to implement, consult on and support your ERP system. The ERP partner you select can be just as important as the ERP technology it runs.
You will likely have invested in an ERP system, like Sage X3, to run your financial and operational processes across the entire organisation. However, you may now regret your choice in selecting Sage X3 if you’re not achieving what you set out to do. What if it’s not Sage X3 to blame? Perhaps it’s time to look for a new partner.
This article investigates some of the key reasons businesses switch partners and what you should be looking for from a new partner.
Identifying the problem and barriers to change
Having an ineffective Sage X3 support partner can be frustrating. Not having the right partner significantly impacts business success and prevents an organisation from achieving the benefits they expect from investments in Sage X3.
A recent study by Forrester ‘The Total Economic Impact™ Of Sage X3 Solutions’ says that organisations can expect an ROI of 213% over three years Therefore, organisations must make the most of the capability and productivity savings available.
Businesses invest huge amounts of revenue into ERP systems and it’s a massive undertaking from a project perspective. Consequently, you want to be certain you are working with a partner who not only knows their way around Sage X3 but has plenty of experience implementing the software as well as in your industry.
Additionally, you want to be assured the partner understands your business and your goals, can apply previous experience to your project and help you achieve your business objectives.
Dissatisfaction with a current partner can be down to several reasons, such as:
- Having a reactive, unresponsive, or ‘ticket handling’ support partner
- Lack of Sage X3 knowledge and experience in the partner’s team
- Not scheduling periodic reviews to keep up to speed with your evolving business systems requirements
- The partner lacks an understanding of your industry and its unique requirements
- Internal dissatisfaction with the implementation and/or Sage X3
The investment in your Sage X3 system is significant, and it needs to be proactively managed by the right partner to keep up with the pace of change in your organisation and its growth to deliver the benefits originally envisaged.
What to consider when selecting a Sage X3 partner
The concept of moving to another partner may appear a daunting task.
So, what should you consider when looking to select a new Sage X3 partner? Here are four key things to look for when choosing a new partner:
1. Depth of industry and product experience
Every industry has its nuances. Consider the experience the prospective partner has with the modules you use and your industry. This has a significant impact on how quickly the partner can get up to speed with the system and what needs to be done. It is also a good determinant of the value they can add. When they have seen your challenge before they have more than just Sage X3 knowledge to come up with solutions to meet your needs.
Taking your organisation to the next level of growth requires a strong, integrated technology foundation; which includes a well-matched ERP solution for your industry from a trusted vendor. The benefits of choosing a Sage X3 ERP partner with both product and relevant industry experience cannot be underestimated.
Due diligence when looking for a support partner should involve taking references from existing customers and finding out about recent migrations, upgrades or replacements that have been undertaken to gain a clearer understanding of the support partner’s reputation in the real world.
3. Service transition
Challenge your prospective partner on their approach to service transition and take references on where and when they have done this before. Those partners that have a proven track record will demonstrate how they will seamlessly support the transition.
4. Management of releases
Future-proof your business by choosing a partner that has experience in managing Sage X3 releases successfully. Sage currently has two annual releases for Sage X3. Look for a partner who can advise you about new functionality and how it could be embraced and incorporated into your system; whilst minimising both downtime and issues with the Sage X3 configuration and performance.
Here are some additional questions to ask yourself to help set your expectations for a new Sage X3 support partner:
- Does your system fit your needs, now and for the future?
- How often do you use support, and what type of challenges have you had?
- Is your team fully trained to use Sage X3, would they benefit from more?
- What are you happy/unhappy with in Sage X3?
- What add-ons/customisations have been created and will they be needed going forward
Check out our guide ‘Switch Sage X3 Support Partner’ to find out what you should expect from a great support partner.