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Recently, executives from SYSPRO visited our new offices in Waltham. We’ve been spending time with SYSPRO, who provide a comprehensive, flexible Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) solution to a variety of industries, on a regular basis for the past several years.

The purpose of this recent meeting was to share new product and technology news, including:

  • The availability of SYSPRO in the Azure Cloud
  • SYSPRO Harmony, the unification of social media, collaboration, machine learning, cognitive services, and data analytics
  • SYSPRO Bots, a new AI-driven user experience
  • SYSPRO Predictive Search
  • SYSPRO Workbench user interface

I was interested in all of these offerings, but the one I would most like to discuss is SYSPRO Harmony.

SYSPRO Harmony provides a portal for all of the information and communication needs your employees may have. I was particularly struck by its functionality related to collaboration.

I’ve covered collaboration as it relates to ERP many times in the past. Often, the available solutions enable employees to communicate in ways similar to those they are familiar with outside of work – i.e., on Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter. As on these platforms, using social features in ERP employees can tag each other in conversations, reference processes, projects, and orders, or alert teams of news they need to know. Such capabilities not only facilitate communication, but also create a record of communication for later reference.

Technology like this is gaining steam in the ERP vendor community, and, by extension, among users as well. In fact, today Leaders are over twice as likely to have social business capabilities integrated in their ERP solutions (21% vs. 10%). Nevertheless, this technology is just beginning to be adopted. That being said, SYSPRO’s approach revealed features related to social ERP that may help increase its traction.

In our meeting, SYSPRO showed how one can easily include data from ERP in the conversations that happen on a social business platform. Users can reference customer orders and pull in or attach information that is relevant to the conversation. Indeed, the platform even uses intelligence to auto-populate conversations with relevant information. Thanks to this capability, employees do not have to drop out of the conversation to find data somewhere else and the data included in the conversation is more accurate.

Features like this make the portal more robust and the conversations on it more relevant. They also solidify the value of social business technology as it relates to ERP and can even change the way that the typical user interacts with data.

Social ERP has been making gains over the past few years – I covered this in 2015’s “The Next Generation of Business Management: Social ERP” – but thus far we have not seen many organizations using it effectively. The advancements in this technology that SYSPRO is providing could mean that users finally make social ERP part of their workflows.

Image Source (Creative Commons): taka_aka_T.

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