Future requirements of ERP software from the vendors' point of view

Alina Chircu, Bentley University
Wasana Bandara, Queensland University of Technology
Donald R. Chand, Bentley University


CIOs and CEOs are confronted with the key question of choosing the right ERP software for their company. The evaluation process tends to be painstaking as the outcome usually affects the competitiveness and thus the future of the company itself. Packaged software has become so powerful in recent years that it fulfils the requirements of companies from different industries after a thorough customization process. Nevertheless, case studies and anecdotal evidence show that in many cases ERP implementation projects are demanding and results do not meet expectations. This leads to the question of whether and how ERP vendors are addressing the perceived problems of ERP users. Is there work in progress that will help facilitate the selection and implementation of ERP packaged software for users? Will there be tools available to adopt ERP modules to the specific business processes of a company and – taking into account that processes are likely to change over time – will there be mechanisms available to adapt the software to changing requirements (in the literature discussed as “agility”)? These are the questions that stimulated an in-depth study of the German- speaking ERP software market. In a qualitative study based on thirty interviews with ERP vendors we draw a picture of the value proposition of future ERP software.