Why Do ERP implementations Fail? Key Points to remember for a Successful Transformation

Why Do ERP implementations Fail? Key Points to remember for a Successful Transformation 1550 750 Xcelpros Team


In recent years there have been more stories of ERP implementation failures. With this in mind, it is understandable why organizations might be apprehensive about investing in a new ERP solution when the failure rate is high. The reality is that most of the ERP implementation projects often fail to meet the triple constraints – scope, budget, and timeline. These projects tend to start well with a Project Charter that lists out the objectives, and very quickly, deviations start hindering the project. Despite these hindrances, companies that do not shift to a new age ERP to optimize their business functions, especially post COVID-19, fall into the risk of losing business. How do companies then overcome a standstill situation? Read on to know more about how you, as a company, can progress forward and overcome this dilemma.

50%of SMBs will focus on the integration of on-premises and cloud resources by 2021 and it will be their top IT spending.

2/3 of SMBs will have digital transformation as a key part of their IT strategies by the end of 2023.

60%of SMBs will have mobile worker support in place by 2021.

Source: IDC, 2019

The Business Story

If you are a Small or Medium business owner, your workday often starts at home by triaging emails early in the morning. Having grown the business from the ground up, you know your customers / vendors, and you’re still involved in day-to-day operations. But the bigger the company gets, the more complex your business processes become. Each email adds something to your to-do list, which typically requires transitioning to a different application.

You use accounting software to prepare an invoice, a CRM system to manage your contacts and sales pipeline, and perhaps yet another manufacturing solution to track production or inventory. Switching back and forth between fragmented, stand-alone solutions takes time and often requires duplicate data entry. This diminished productivity stifles your ability to scale and cuts into the time you could spend developing new business. To keep up the pace of your growth, you’re likely considering the move to a more comprehensive business management solution. Read on to dive into how to make it happen.

Plan the Move, but Execute Rapidly

Companies cannot hide in the comfort zone of their existing antiquated applications forever. Disconnected systems cannot handle the complexity of a growing business. Post COVID-19, the impetus is towards operating rapidly with fewer resources, reduced cost, and still being able to build a system that will set companies to thrive in the market.

Technology objectives for business involve:

  • Deploying one solution to manage financials, sales, services, and operations.
  • Connecting apps like payroll, banking apps, CRM systems, e-commerce, or customer APIs.
  • Creating quotes, orders, and invoices right from Outlook and get tasks done on the go with mobile apps.

It would help if you had a champion within a company that understands the importance of staying agile in challenging market conditions. This champion should spearhead the rapid transformation project with the help of experts that excel in ERP implementations and have seen a variety of implementations across multiple applications.

ERP Assessments

Assessments are done during any phase of the project, to make sure the project is on the right path, especially when there is a high spend involved. In most cases, management’s perspective either will be that the software is too slow and complex to adapt to the company environment, or selection of “wrong” software packages led to the failure. The primary reason for an ERP project failure is due to the lack of proper user adaptability rather than any issues with the software as issues with software are easily fixed through update patches from the ISV.

The right time to do the assessment is before starting the implementation. It is essential to conduct a risk-free assessment, benefits analysis, performance objectives for operations, and budget analysis. Ideally, a Free Pilot that gives you a gist about the application and how it may fit in your company can be an ideal route. After all, an ERP is a critical investment that companies, especially SMBs, undertake towards upgrading their business capabilities. The evaluation of ROI is, therefore, essential and can be assessed based on how quickly the business can leverage a new ERP system in line with the objectives of the investment as a whole. A little bit of caution, careful planning, and looking below the surface can take you miles closer to a successful ERP implementation.

Nearly 75% of all ERP deployments fail to meet their expected business objectives in entirety.Source: Gartner

Why do ERP Implementations Fail?

Below are a few reasons why ERP implementations see significant deviations from the original scope that impacts the triple constraints:

1.Undefined Objectives – Once you decide to migrate to a new system, your first step should be to define the clear goals for the project, allowing you to refer back to them if and when deviations popup.

Few questions that would aid the transformation:

What are you trying to accomplish with the new system?

What improvements are you expecting in every department?

Is the goal automation and standardizing workflows, increasing collaboration across departments, or speeding up time to market or reducing throughput time?

Are all of your goals possible to achieve through this deployment?

What is the absolute must-have for the transformation?

And what protocol is in place to handle deviations when a wishlist pops up that steers the project out of control?

2.Limited Resources – Most companies underestimate the totality of the internal resources needed for the project. Companies often don’t plan the right kind of internal resources to help the transformation, play liaison, and make the tough decision on what requests are unreasonable for a successful go-live.

3.Change Management – A new ERP brings change to your entire organization, impacting the daily lives of employees across all functions. Each employee’s level of change tolerance differs, and being open to learning a new system becomes part of the change management process.

4.Unrealistic Timelines – Project schedules are no less important than planning the budget and resources. We often see unrealistic timelines that don’t align with the expectations of the project. Management may want to push functionality that may not be feasible in the first implementation rollout.

5.Hefty Customization – Customizing your ERP system can offer you an extra edge but also involves risks. Customizations often start small but can quickly grow in complexity, further extending timelines and adding hours and hours of additional development. A recent survey reveals that less than 20% of respondents implemented their ERP system with little or no customization. Most companies find it enormously challenging to control the project scope by turning down customizations.

The majority of ERP system failure attributes to hefty

FIGURE 1: Case Study: Hershey’s Story Is a Living Example of ERP Implementation Mistakes

Outcome: Harshey had to lose a huge percent of market share over competitors such as Nestle, Mars. Underestimating change management, having set unrealistic timeline and inadequate training resulted in implementation failure of the ERP system. Despite having warehouse filled with inventories, most of their products could not hit the market on time.

Safeguard the ERP Deployment and Minimize Post-Go-Live Issues

According to Gartner, 90% of organizations shift their preference from a single vendor ERP suite in favor of integrating multiple niche applications, which it recognizes as a postmodern ERP application.

To ensure a successful ERP implementation, your organization needs to follow a few practices including:

Define objectives and goals

Analyze key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to help track the critical purposes of ERP implementation, such as supporting organic expansion and transparency in operations.


Identify best-fit vendors

Examine vendors for their technological knowledge, industry experience, and prior success rate before signing contracts. You want trained professionals with in-depth knowledge that can help reach the expected output.


Agree on the methodology

Evaluate the right project methodology that can be converted into a set of executable tasks for the project, and agree to the process and protocols involved in it. You will want someone in-house with prior experience to be the liaison between the implementer and the end-users.


Finalize the features

Finalize essential ERP features for your implementation, remembering to take into account the budget, synchronizing it with core business requirements. Create a blueprint of the intended design.


Feed relevant data

Identify only the data essential to transfer and try to keep it to a minimum. Data migration can be a tough task, and burdening the software with irrelevant and unstructured data could slow the process.


Training and change management

Train end-users and employees to develop susceptibility in them to changes. As updates or developments take place within the ERP system for increasing efficiency within the organization, employees should be confident enough to absorb those changes.



Understand that testing is essential for an ERP implementation. You will want to formulate a plan and a method of testing to understand the issues that popup during builds and a process to resolve the problems. It’s also important to realize that if problems arise during testing, they will need to capture the necessary details of what needs to be corrected. These issues are not a reflection of what the system will be post-go-live, as long a timely resolution plan exists. If the same problem repeats, it is essential to highlight the issues which could be due to an underlying data or design defect.


Understanding an Enterprise Resource Planning System that Works for You

The ERP that is chosen should have the potential to meet all of the business objectives. Users should be trained to understand the system, to avoid issues with data integrity or process efficiency. Ultimately the primary aim is to minimize slowdown in operations due to limited workforce.

Accessibility of real-time data from any location helps the workforce to support agile business operations. Businesses need to integrate and streamline all activities of the organization and promote real-time visibility of operations such as:

  • Inventory Management
  • Accounting
  • Order Management
  • Supply Chain
  • Customer Relationship Management
  • Human Resource Management
  • Product Lifecycle

You need a solution that helps maintain compliance, secures data, and delivers a 99.9% uptime service level agreement.

Your ERP solution suite should provide with the possibility to

  • Handle, store, and transmit data securely across your systems
  • Protect information from unauthorized access with automatic Microsoft datacenter encryption
  • Control access to personal data and implement audit trails to ensure security and accountability

How does the Microsoft Ecosystem Help?

Most SMBs will outgrow basic accounting tools due to the lack of functionality and integration. Disjointed systems create incomplete data and tedious reporting resulting in blind spots and poor decisions. Lack of controls, workflows, and unsecure data causes further business risks. An agile application such as Dynamics 365 Business Central natively integrates with O365, PowerBi, and Microsoft Dynamics Sales apps – boosting the company’s ability to perform in challenging market conditions. It helps to run your business with a single solution that streamlines business processes and helps employees work faster and smarter. The heterogeneity of a suite of applications like Microsoft leverages the combined strength of the best apps for specific tasks, which is not possible through an individual ERP.

Together, Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central and Office 365 help you:

  • Drive productivity by reducing time spent switching between stand-alone apps.
  • Foster collaboration and communication by breaking down internal silos and broadening visibility across the organization.
  • Accelerate user adoption and lower training time with a seamless user experience.

Key Takeaways

  • Before kicking off the implementation, the management and stakeholders involved need the right information on their role for Project success. Another essential element is to find the right internal champion who can manage user expectations without jeopardizing the objectives of the implementation.
  • A well-planned and coordinated ERP implementation where the implementer and client are on the same page can make the project a lot easier to bring to completion. In contrast, an unplanned ERP can disrupt your whole business process and cause huge losses.
  • It helps in setting the right expectations early, and understanding what to expect so that you can save time and effort and take your business to new heights with the proper ERP implementation.

Xcelpros has designed packages for Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central (recommended for SMB with simpler processes), Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance (recommended for SMB or Larger companies requiring more comprehensive Financial functionality), and Supply Chain (recommended for SMB or Larger companies requiring more comprehensive Supply Chain functionality). 

Take Our Free Assessment to Get Started With Digital Transformation

Register Now

About XcelPros

XcelPros is a Chicago-based company delivering transformation through technology. We offer business and technology solutions with deep industry experience in Chemical, Pharma, Life Sciences (including Medical Devices, Bio-Medical & Biotech), Insurance, Discrete Manufacturing, Process Manufacturing, Distribution and Food & Beverage.

XcelPros is a Microsoft Gold Partner, Direct Cloud Solutions Provider (CSP) and a Systems Integrator (SI) offering software licensing, implementation and consulting services for Microsoft Dynamics 365, CRM, Microsoft Dynamics AX, Business Intelligence & Analytics (Power BI), SharePoint, Office 365 and Azure (Cloud, IOT, Microsoft Flow amongst many others).

Our mission is to provide integrated technology solutions that amplify impact and empower our customer’s businesses. We believe technology is the key enabler of exponential growth for us and our customers.

Contact XcelPros today to transform your business.

Call us toll-free – 1.855.411.0585 (or) visit

the cost of inaction for an erp implementation

The Cost of Inaction : Case in Point for an ERP Implementation

The Cost of Inaction : Case in Point for an ERP Implementation 1400 820 Xcelpros Team

At a Glance

  • Companies are emotionally and monetarily invested in their business systems. You need a system that delivers Qualitative and Quantitative ROI.
  • The metamorphosis of ERPs from the typical back-office software to the current-day integrated platforms delivers simplicity and interoperability, helping companies make more informed data-driven decisions.
  • Top reasons that hinder a successful ERP implementation – resistance to change, inadequate sponsorship, unplanned upfront costs and unrealistic expectations regarding time and cost of implementation.
  • The actual cost of doing nothing can be calculated by understanding the potential benefits offered by a new-age ERP system versus the cost of maintaining a not so efficient legacy system (we call it TCO).
  • Organizations experience lost opportunities and a slow-down in growth by not moving to a modern day ERP solution.
  • An easy to use Tier 1 ERP system like Microsoft Dynamics 365 promotes enterprise-wide adoption, and in most cases, delivers a quantitative ROI in less than one year.


Technology has come a long way with a growing recognition of the transformational benefits and efficiencies it is able to deliver to organizations. Figuring out what software you need, when you need it and how to implement it is what most companies ponder.

While numbers are important, the deciding factor for any new business system should not be driven by Return-on-Investment (ROI) and Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) alone. Continued complacency in choosing a new ERP system impairs your growth and magnifies inefficiencies in the long run.

While most decision-makers understand the importance of upgrading their technology, year after year they end up doing nothing. As harsh as it sounds, it is a reality.

Today’s organizations already struggle to remain competitive. Lack of modern streamlined systems and operations can add undue stress to already-overworked resources, compounding the issue.

While it may be easier to just do nothing, putting off critical business decisions ends up costing more down the road. This is especially true in the case of companies needing operational efficiencies that can be achieved using integrated ERP systems.

Today’s ERP Systems have evolved from traditional back-office tools used only for record keeping, to sophisticated fully-automated systems embedded with Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML) and Internet of Things (IoT). A tangible benefit the user derives from this sophistication is “Simplicity”, which aids in decision-making, user adoption and operational efficiencies. Tier 1 ERPs such as Microsoft Dynamics 365 render intelligence to enterprises by leveraging synergies of powerful technologies for even faster and more efficient business processes.

This article shares our experiences as strategic technology consultants, commonly sighted patterns and the transformative journey companies experience as a result of their technology investments.

Shortsightedness & the Apprehension to Change

Across industries, business leaders often come clamping down with the urge to make a decision. However, apprehension to change, complexity of ERP implementations and short-sightedness regarding processes result in indefinite delays and lack of results.

There are still companies that rely on multiple standalone applications to handle their business functions. Per our experience, there are two primary reasons why this happens –

01.Piecemeal and Save $X

These organizations will often purchase these individual components piecemeal, as “lower cost items” with the thought that saving $X is the most important aspect. In reality, to get the functionality they’re after they now need to connect 2-3 extra pieces of software with additional costs tied to each.

02. Enterprises Choosing Best-of-Breed

In large enterprises, software built for specific purposes are pulled together as a cluster forming their own “greatest hits” collection. These softwares are connected together by complex interfaces, and often, poorly designed integrations resulting in unforeseen points of failure.

Neither of these options are sustainable in the long run, inevitably driving business leaders back to the drawing board, to now start all over. This is usually a case of business leaders overlooking the bigger picture of what lies ahead.

When organizations are built like this, it limits their ability to leverage connected ecosystems which are designed to provide transparency, ease of use, consistency, efficiency, and most importantly real-time information.

Often overlooked is the fact that while these smaller standalone software can be purchased for a lower price, the long-term ownership, integration, and opportunity costs drive that price much higher than anticipated.

Even worse, once these standalone softwares are integrated, it becomes harder and harder to replace them when they inevitably start to cost more in upkeep, resulting in a need for added maintenance. The growing costs for maintaining different software for different business functions are overwhelming, especially when you begin to consider the resources needed to correctly manage them.

In contrast, a modern, connected ERP helps organizations streamline business processes by synchronizing data across functions, giving way to an agile, transparent, efficient and affordable system. Adding the combined benefits of the factors mentioned above, and still delaying the adoption of an integrated ERP system highlights the actual cost of doing nothing.


Companies are not conscious of the fact that by continuing to use a paper-based system and dated technology, they magnify compliance risks, impaired operations and human capital inefficiencies. While a well-integrated ERP system is designed to better manage operations as your organization grows, only a few companies choose to embrace the change.

Making the decision to move to a modern ERP is no easy task. A successful implementation will largely depend on the abilities and experience of your ERP partner, the degree of customization, and the engagement of your organization’s users and subject matter experts (SMEs). Success, therefore, is predicated not just on the investment of resources (people, time and technology), but also the selection of the right partner that suits your company, and culture, with a high level of expertise in your industry. This helps with a smooth implementation and ensures a faster ROI.

Organizations that are yet to upgrade to a modern ERP must continuously resort to short-term band-aid solutions rather than permanent fixes.

Here are some of the challenges that companies face on a daily basis:

  • Paper-based reporting leading to a lack of transparency and delays
  • Frequent outages resulting in a loss of productivity
  • Old and siloed systems dragging down efficiency
  • High costs in maintaining old, customized legacy systems
  • Legacy system unable to track inventory turnover rates
  • Reported productivity (%) is lower than industry standards
  • Projected sales figures are based on guesstimates rather than actual numbers
  • Customer satisfaction scores are dropping as a result of inability to accurately forecast order volumes
  • Financial and stock volume reconciliation takes longer to process quarterly and at the year-end
  • There is a lack of visibility of information across business functions
  • Current system lacks the ability to support collaboration
  • High dependency on third-party software and add-ons leads to significant budget creep annually

If even one of these pain points seems familiar, your organization is ready to invest in a modern, connected, integrated ERP system.

Patterns Plaguing the Industry

We talk to dozens of customers everyday, and realized there are a few common patterns across industries. This is what some of them say –

Roadblocks to Transformation

From Resistance to Change to the lack of a proper Change Management Plan – there’s an array of reasons that could be considered roadblocks to a successful ERP implementation.

Here are some of the most cited reasons we have seen that have resulted in the delay of an ERP implementation –

Figure 1: Roadblocks to transformation: Top reasons that hinder modern ERP adoption

Source: Deloitte

01. The Workforce Is Resisting Change

Resistance to change is the single most cited barrier (82%) for organizations considering migration to a modern ERP.

People are comfortable doing things they are familiar with; whether its existing practices like manually recording data or by using multiple pieces of software in their day-to-day operations. Unfortunately, time and costs associated with maintaining multiple systems wastes valuable resources which could be better utilized in other productive and profitable jobs.

One of our customers, a successful chemical distributor with multiple locations in the US and abroad is in this exact scenario. They are currently running a dated ERP system supported by a collection of point-to-point siloed solutions.

While they’re not shortsighted and have a great vision for their company, resistance to migrate to a newer, more comprehensive solution is holding them back from achieving their objectives within the expected timeframe.

If this sounds familiar, developing a comprehensive change management plan – taking into consideration your people, culture, industry, vision and organizational objectives on the whole has been proven to ease this transition.

Change management is a vital catalyst to help achieve your project objectives. Users need an emotional buy-in when migrating to a new ERP.

Key factors that need to be considered for user change management –

  • Including the end users in the decision-making & planning process in order to streamline change management: Organizations have traditionally focused a great deal on approval processes, while spending little or no time preparing their employees for change.
  • Articulating the benefits of an ERP to employees before beginning an ERP implementation: An uninformed implementation could derail the purpose and commitment of the project, requiring, at a minimum, extended training times, which leads to missed milestones and a delayed adoption.

02. Upfront Costs & Cost-Benefit Analysis

When researching new ERP solutions, organizations often pause to evaluate initial costs. This is especially true for small-to-mid sized organizations with less than 1,000 users as the costs for implementing an ERP can vary depending on the level of functionality, features and integrations required, customizations, mode of deployment (cloud vs on-premise) and brand of software.

While it’s necessary for the buying organization to determine the functionalities applicable to their needs, companies needing an ERP solution should always conduct a comprehensive cost-benefit analysis. The modules and functionality need to be factored to accurately determine total value when compared to a piecemealed add-on solution.

Unlike piecemeal systems, modern ERPs pay for themselves in the long run as they include a variety of integrated and interconnected modules driving a majority if not all of your business functions, including: inventory management, supply chain management, manufacturing, material resource planning, financials, embedded business intelligence, and more.

Figure 2: Based on the deployment type, ERP solutions can have varied upfront costs, time & complexity to implement, and maintainance.

03. ERP Implementations Take Too Long

While the right ERP system delivers enhanced efficiency, speed, and transparency to business processes, the timeframe to implement can only be determined by analyzing the following:

  • Organizational and Compliance requirements
  • Fit / Gap Analysis of the system you chose. In case of gaps, details of the customizations required.
  • Host of other equally sensitive factors such as change management

Extended implementation times are often created by a lack of involvement from senior staff and Subject Matter Experts (SME), as well as inconsistent levels of support from vendors and partners unfamiliar with the industry.

Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Finance & Operations is Microsoft’s flagship ERP. Due to its breadth of out-of-the-box functionality and simplicity, it has significantly minimized the implementation time in comparison to its competitors or even its prior version.

As the ERP landscape continues to evolve, here are some additional points that shouldn’t be overlooked

Full Disclosure: ERP Implementations could require considerable changes to the following:

  • Existing business processes,
  • The training of their workforce,
  • The depletion of allocated funds

Additionally, these implementations can introduce momentary disruptions to businesses operations. Keeping the users well informed and involved will go a long way towards minimizing these disruptions to an organization.

Open Collaboration: An open line of communication is a must, organizations and their chosen ERP implementation partners need to work together to

  • create a defined roadmap,
  • agree on the challenges that could arise,
  • and work together

Collaboration in this way helps minimize any possible disruptions to a business in order to ensure a smooth implementation of the program.

Partners that know your industry: Partnering with the right vendor that possesses demonstrated expertise and experience in your industry is key to a successful implementation. Within the Microsoft ecosystem, choosing a partner that builds solutions in your focus industry is a better choice. Building industry-specific products and keeping up with it in the current day requires a lot of depth in the industry in conjunction with the technology.

04. Unreasonable Expectations – Implementation Process

Organizations are often tempted to implement new ERP systems within a condensed, unrealistic time frame. In our experience, companies that enforce such timelines without consideration of users, change, transformation and company objectives, do not end up with favorable results.

Even after receiving clarity on the time and effort required to successfully complete an ERP implementation, an organization may be tempted to try and get their ERP system implemented in one quick step.

This is neither feasible nor recommended given the differences and complexity inherent to any ERP implementation – This understanding comes from user experience, having a defined methodology and through comprehensive user training.

Project Methodology: There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to project methodologies. With over 40 years of combined hands-on experience with major ERP systems, our founders have learned that “Agile” is the best way to go instead of a waterfall approach. This understanding has led to the development of a tried-and-tested, unified methodology to implement major business systems. This method can be leveraged for phased as well as big-bang approaches.

User Training & Agility: End users need a comprehensive training plan, agility in the pace of learning, acceptance of new, and be able to work with their partner to streamline their organization’s processes.

05. Perceived Risk to Data Security for Cloud-Based ERPs

Since the introduction of cloud-based systems, conventional on-premise ERP vendors have exaggerated the dangers associated with the cloud to promote their on-premise solutions. This negative propaganda has been going on for many years, despite the fact that today’s modern Cloud ERPs are every bit as secure as their on-premise counterparts, if not more.

Most companies still consider their in-house server to be more secure than even industry-leading cloud companies like Microsoft, Amazon, and Google. Most companies are unaware that an analog fax line is the weakest link today, exposing organizations to a major security breach

The cloud is here to stay, and current ERP solutions come with a host of powerful new security features such as: In-stream packet scanning, continuous application vulnerability scanning, and multi-layer firewall testing offering one of the most secure experiences yet.

For organizations with multiple physical locations, the challenges associated with maintaining more than one security software for each server can be daunting. Leveraging the power and security of the Cloud provides a seamless, uniform user experience across multiple locations.

Key factors influencing the implementation, buy and adoption of ERP Systems

01. “Buy” Decision & Implementation

There are two key factors that matter when you consider an implementation of a new business system –

Qualitative ROI: Characterized by ease-of-use, emotional buy-in of users, connection to their day-to-day lives and overall adoption. These are critical elements and more important than just numbers. Left unconsidered, these will result in a failed implementation.

Quantitative ROI: Return of Investment (ROI) and Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) are the monetary drivers.

Qualitative and Quantitative factors are critical elements that will help you choose your ERP system wisely.

A healthy balance of the above two factors not only helped business leaders implement their ERP successfully but also resulted in a company-wide improvement in the key performance metrics, depicted below.

Figure 3: Company-wide improvement in KPIs

02. Factors That Drive Adoption of Modern ERP Systems

Beyond just TCO being within budget or ROI within an acceptable time-frame, there are more factors that drive companies to implement one business system over another. Here are the top reasons in 2018.

Figure 4: Top reasons for implementing ERP, 2018

Source: Panorama Consulting, 2018

Why choose Microsoft Dynamics 365 over other modern day ERP systems?

Other than its competitive cost, ease of operations and higher ROI, Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Finance & Operations (Microsoft’s flagship ERP) draws its strength from the Power of One Microsoft Ecosystem.

So, what is the Microsoft Ecosystem and why is this a differentiating factor?

Microsoft is the only company that provides a full-spectrum of industry-leading software, from Office 365 to enterprise grade, tier 1 ERP and CRM products. Competing software vendors end up building complex interfaces with Microsoft out of necessity resulting in redundancy and cost overruns.

The components within this ecosystem have come together over numerous revisions to form a comprehensive, connected solution that can be leveraged across industries, by any organization.

Microsoft Dynamics 365 is designed for simplicity with a familiar look and feel experienced within other products across the Microsoft Ecosystem. Change is easy with Microsoft, making it an ideal software for small-to-mid-market companies.

For more information, refer to our article and a whitepaper on the One-Microsoft Ecosystem.

Now, can you really calculate the “Cost of doing Nothing?”

The cost of doing nothing is determined by calculating the difference between the Return on Investment (ROI) of a modern ERP implementation and the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) of existing, legacy ERP software.

Cost of doing nothing = ROI* – TCO of current systems

Both ROI and TCO need to take into account the following –

  • Cost of software
  • Cost of infrastructure
  • Opportunity Costs (Due to the lack of a good system)
  • Cost of compliance
  • Cost of labor (manual work, paper etc.)

Return on Investment – ROI

Return on Investment (ROI) is a standard measure of performance used to evaluate the efficiency of any investment, such as an organization’s ERP. ROI can also be used when comparing multiple systems, directly measuring the possible return of one ERP against another in comparison to the cost.

ROI = (Value of Current ERP – Cost of Investment) / New ERP Cost

Total Cost of Ownership

Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) is a calculation organizations use to make informed financial decisions. For ERP systems, Instead of just looking at the purchase price, TCO looks at the complete cost from purchase to implementation, including expected costs to be incurred during the lifetime of the product, such as service, maintenance, and more.

Key Takeaways

  • While doing nothing today may seem like a safe move for any number of reasons, doing nothing will only get you further and further away from your organizational objectives.
  • You may easily justify the cost of acquiring an ERP system purely based on ROI, however, the decision should be based on more than just dollars and cents. ERP is the heart of an organization and has a profound impact on the day-to-day operations, change management and most importantly emotional buy-in of an organization’s employees.
  • Regardless of the software, the system you choose needs to support key business functions and objectives of your enterprise, today and at least 10 years in the future.
  • The right ERP partner can guide a buyer in their journey to objectively evaluate the potential of an ERP system based on business objectives and by implementing features relevant to the organization.

Take Our Free Assessment to Get Started With Digital Transformation

Register Now

About XcelPros

XcelPros is a Chicago-based company delivering transformation through technology. We offer business and technology solutions with deep industry experience in Chemical, Pharma, Life Sciences (including Medical Devices, Bio-Medical & Biotech), Insurance, Discrete Manufacturing, Process Manufacturing, Distribution and Food & Beverage.

XcelPros is a Microsoft Gold Partner, Direct Cloud Solutions Provider (CSP) and a Systems Integrator (SI) offering software licensing, implementation and consulting services for Microsoft Dynamics 365, CRM, Microsoft Dynamics AX, Business Intelligence & Analytics (Power BI), SharePoint, Office 365 and Azure (Cloud, IOT, Microsoft Flow amongst many others).

Our mission is to provide integrated technology solutions that amplify impact and empower our customer’s businesses. We believe technology is the key enabler of exponential growth for us and our customers.

Contact XcelPros today to transform your business.

Call us toll-free – 1.855.411.0585 (or) visit

why choose microsoft dynamics 355 over sap

ERP Comparison : Why Choose Microsoft Dynamics 365 Over SAP

ERP Comparison : Why Choose Microsoft Dynamics 365 Over SAP 1400 820 Xcelpros Team

At a Glance

  • ERP systems play a vital role in running the operations of an enterprise. They have a long-term impact on people and processes within a company.
  • Evaluation of ERP systems is overwhelming and requires thorough vetting of various factors that are important to your company.
  • This article evaluates at length, the key differentiating factors between Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations and SAP.
  • Microsoft Dynamics 365 offers the lowest Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) among all tier 1 ERP vendors. Its payback period is 18 months lower than that of SAP.
  • Microsoft Dynamics 365 offers the highest ROI of approximately $17 per one dollar spent within the first three years. This return is exponentially higher considering the ROI for competing ERP and CRM products is $7.23 and $8.71, respectively.
  • Microsoft Dynamics is best suited for progressive mid-market companies aiming to make it big to support growth to an exponential degree.

You have a lot to gain or lose from an ERP system. You have established a core team to evaluate ERP systems and spent the last few months evaluating a number of Tier 1 and Tier 2 ERP Vendors. Your team sat through hours of very boring and a few exciting demonstrations of the system and how they fit your organization.

Evaluating an ERP is overwhelming. Our series of articles focused on ERP comparison will help you make informed decisions. We examine various business applications and how they compare to Microsoft Dynamics 365. Our hands-on experience in ERP systems like SAP, Oracle, Microsoft Dynamics, Infor etc. allows us to provide an objective comparison in the strengths, weaknesses and relevance of these applications.

This article provides everything you need to know while evaluating SAP and Microsoft Dynamics.

What matters?

An ERP system is at the heart of every company. It helps unify people, processes and technology across the organization so that business units function efficiently and work in unison towards a common objective.

When evaluating an ERP, here are a few key parameters that matter most –

  • Business process mapping and requirement analysis
  • Budget
  • ERP Vendor Comparison
    • Total cost of ownership
    • Return on Investment (ROI)
    • Out-of-the-box Features & Functions
    • Duration of Implementation
    • Types of Deployment
    • Operational Disruption
    • Competency of the partner, partner network and resources
    • Evaluation of not just the application but the Ecosystem
  • Technical evaluation including role of ERP in the company’s overall digital strategy

Requirements vary across organizations and so does budget – these are discussions that need deeper consultations and analysis. What stands out as a benchmark is the comparison of functionality, strengths, ease of use, pricing, and value proposition offered by vendors.

Do it once, do it right.

Microsoft has perfected it!

Microsoft has put in visible efforts towards tethering customers into a Microsoft-centric world that is themed around user-friendliness. The company’s continued investment in cloud, user experience, analytics and integration is aimed to increase productivity while reducing overall costs.

Windows from Microsoft is the most popular operating system owing to its ease of use; and per NetMarketShare, the OS is used in over 87% of desktop/laptop globally. Continuing its recipe for success, Microsoft has ensured that the Dynamics platform resonates similar minimalistic yet powerful productivity & design elements of Windows. Multiple acquisitions including Navision, Axapta and Great Plains have helped Microsoft build its flagship ERP product today – Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Finance & Operations.

Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Finance & Operations has been built consistent with the intent of creating a simple, powerful and a common ecosystem. An ecosystem that is easy to use, secure and scalable.

Microsoft Dynamics 365 arguably enjoys a dominant position across small and medium enterprises. The scalability of the application has allowed successful deployments at large retail and manufacturing companies with thousands of users. Microsoft Dynamics has established itself as a viable alternative by voiding the complexities of larger applications such as SAP and Oracle.

Below are just a few well-known large enterprises that use Microsoft Dynamics 365:

Microsoft Dynamics 365 vs SAP – The Comparison

Factors such as implementation time, time to achieve stable state, disruption to business functions are amongst the top qualitative parameters.

  • Per Panorama Consulting, Microsoft Dynamics 365 users reported an average 12 months implementation time compared to its peer SAP with close to 15 months’ time.
  • Average timeline of 12 months is relevant to medium and high complexity implementations.
  • For smaller companies and low complexity implementations, the time to implement is less than 12 months. Get more information from XcelPros on rapid / accelerated implementations for Microsoft Dynamics.
  • Compared to SAP, Microsoft Dynamics 365 users took maximum of two months to achieve stable state as against six months in case of the former.
  • The above finding was also echoed by Forrester Research which reported that SAP users experience more material operational disruption during their implementations than the other Tier 1 providers and that Microsoft Dynamics 365 had the fewest (2017).

Microsoft made it simple, making it an ideal software for mid-market companies.

  • As evident from the above comparison, Microsoft Dynamics 365 scores over SAP in most categories including critical parameters such as time for installation, ease of customization, user experience, TCO, and customer support.
  • A business user needs simplicity. Unlike SAP, which has approx. 70,000 screens for a user to navigate and discover what is useful for his business, Microsoft provides ease of use resonating the very familiar daily used products such as Outlook, Word and Excel.
  • Dynamics 365 allows users to customize the aesthetics of the system for a personalized experience. This includes customization of themes, color, user dashboard both on desktop and hand-held devices including mobile.
  • With embedded business intelligence, the platform assimilates and analyzes customer data to understand patterns and suggest appropriate actions so that sales and marketing organizations are better equipped. Features such as relationship assistant, cortana intelligence, auto capture, and email engagement help gather better sales intelligence and actions thereafter.
  • With Microsoft’s vast ecosystem, Dynamics 365 users can access every module within the system, without the need for investing in other applications. Upgrades and security patches are seamlessly delivered automatically through cloud without causing any disruption to the business functions.

A user story highlighting the power of Microsoft Dynamics 365

Background: A multinational Jeweler needed to modernize its IT services to make use of data collected over time and move from predictive analytics to peerless point-of-sale customer experience.

Problem statement: The global Jewelry house wanted to empower its sales and marketing team with an unified and all-inclusive customer database to create a personalized experience for its customers across all channels (in-store, web, and mobile). They needed to overhaul their IT system to reflect modern age aspects of the business involving back-end IT to POS interactions and facilities management.

Solution: The Jeweler entrusted this responsibility on Microsoft Dynamics for Retail, Finance and Operations, and Customer Service. Integrating information across stores and online channels, staffers were equipped with behavior and purchase patterns of their customers. Using a mobile device, sales personnel were able to access the business relationship, personal information such as birthday, anniversaries, special occasions, to develop better personalized relationship. Marketing team was able to enhance the relation with curated messaging, new product launch and discount offers.

Result: With data consolidated and centralized within Microsoft’s ecosystem, pulling up customer data that otherwise took four minutes were available in few seconds. Using Power BI, the company was able to create actionable insights visualized over an interactive dashboard. With the assurance and reliability of Microsoft’s ecosystem, the Jeweler was able to streamline business processes that helped in further expansion of business.

Power of One-Microsoft Ecosystem

Microsoft ecosystem includes a comprehensive suite of applications ranging from analytics, visualization, artificial intelligence, IoT, PowerApps, CRM, Office 365, and a host of other third-party applications. The seamless integration and the communication of these applications is the key differentiator between Microsoft and any other applications in the market. A few benefits of the ecosystem –

  • Improved connectivity without the need for customizations
  • Improved productivity to enhance efficiencies
  • Improved visibility of information across business functions
  • Ability to download and implement additional functionality / apps from This gives you the power to scale with industry and function specific apps on Microsoft Appsource.
    Ex. Integrated Chemical Management (iCM) – This provides extensive functionality in Label Management and SDS Management for Chemical, Pharmaceutical, Life Sciences and Food Industries. Anyone that works with chemicals – industrial, pharma or food grade will need this app. Every company in these industries needs SDSs and be able to print labels. Without this app, companies need to spend tens of thousands of dollars to customize Microsoft Dynamics 365 workflows, reports and many more elements.
  • Capabilities to support CRM, ERP, and human capital management modules
  • Higher accuracy to determine project costs and increased operational efficiency
  • Seamless integration with SharePoint / best document management system
  • Advanced analytics and scope of cross-selling/up-selling using Field services
  • Collaboration and visualization
  • Application development (with PowerApps)
  • Higher efficiency when onboarding vendors/customers due to familiarity with other Microsoft products

Higher Return on Investment (ROI) and Lower cost of ownership (TCO)

Cost is one of the key parameters that differentiates Microsoft Dynamics 365 from its competitors. Dynamics 365 is designed to be flexible to adapt to the changing needs of customers. Independent surveys conducted by research and consulting houses unanimously rate Microsoft Dynamics 365 to have the highest return on investment (ROI) and low overall cost of ownership platform.

  • Microsoft Dynamics is offered on-premise and in the cloud
  • Licensing has been designed to include all roles and responsibilities within an enterprise.
  • At a high-level, On-premise and Cloud have 3 tiers of user licenses and a device license.
  • Cloud is priced at per user per month
    • Full Access / Enterprise – $190
    • Functional User – $50
    • Task User – $8
  • On-premise is priced at a one-time license fee + 16% Annual Maintenance Fee
  • Per a study by Nucleus Research, Microsoft Dynamics 365 offered the highest return on investment, recovering approximately $17 per dollar spent. This number is exponentially higher considering the combined ROI for ERP and CRM at $7.23 and $8.71 respectively.

Microsoft Dynamics 365 can scale up/down with your changing business needs

Scalability is a key element of the ERP you choose. Only Microsoft allows use to scale up/down as per your business needs. In the case of on-premise, you have the ability to lock your maintenance to the price paid at the time of signing the contract. Customers like this flexibility to add / alter licenses as their resource & business needs change.

  • Benchmarked with efficient performance scaling up thousands of users, Microsoft is completely capable of handling your business requirements. It offers extensive functionalities across financials, supply chain management, and customer relationship management.
  • Ex. You can start with the ERP today and add Microsoft Dynamics CRM later. The scalability aids in adding functionality later as required.
  • Dynamics 365 offers enterprise-wide reporting, powerful business insights, tools that support decision making – all these at a relatively lower cost while scoring high on flexibility and ease of use.

Take Our Free Assessment to Get Started With Digital Transformation

Register Now

About XcelPros

XcelPros is a Chicago-based company delivering transformation through technology. We offer business and technology solutions with deep industry experience in Chemical, Pharma, Life Sciences (including Medical Devices, Bio-Medical & Biotech), Insurance, Discrete Manufacturing, Process Manufacturing, Distribution and Food & Beverage.

XcelPros is a Microsoft Gold Partner, Direct Cloud Solutions Provider (CSP) and a Systems Integrator (SI) offering software licensing, implementation and consulting services for Microsoft Dynamics 365, CRM, Microsoft Dynamics AX, Business Intelligence & Analytics (Power BI), SharePoint, Office 365 and Azure (Cloud, IOT, Microsoft Flow amongst many others).

Our mission is to provide integrated technology solutions that amplify impact and empower our customer’s businesses. We believe technology is the key enabler of exponential growth for us and our customers.

Contact XcelPros today to transform your business.

Call us toll-free – 1.855.411.0585 (or) visit

Organizational Change Management During ERP Implementation

Organizational Change Management During ERP Implementation

Organizational Change Management During ERP Implementation 1050 615 Xcelpros Team

Change is the only constant and resistance to change is natural. Change management is imperative in establishing a balance amid these aspects.

An organization undergoes a major change while embarking on an ERP Implementation. The new system, processes and learning results in a resistance towards change. Organizations need to undergo change to be in sync with changing markets and business dynamics. Most organizations don’t realize the significance of change management for their chosen ERP solution till after the implementation. At this stage the solution, which now includes people, processes, and technology, may need continuous updates as the organization transitions, to perform at its best.

The infographic explains why change management is integral to an ERP implementation, the challenges involved and how shaping a change management strategy ensures a smooth transition within your organization.

change management in erp implementation

Take Our Free Assessment to Get Started With Digital Transformation

Register Now

About XcelPros

XcelPros is a Chicago-based company delivering transformation through technology. We offer business and technology solutions with deep industry experience in Chemical, Pharma, Life Sciences (including Medical Devices, Bio-Medical & Biotech), Insurance, Discrete Manufacturing, Process Manufacturing, Distribution and Food & Beverage.

XcelPros is a Microsoft Gold Partner, Direct Cloud Solutions Provider (CSP) and a Systems Integrator (SI) offering software licensing, implementation and consulting services for Microsoft Dynamics 365, CRM, Microsoft Dynamics AX, Business Intelligence & Analytics (Power BI), SharePoint, Office 365 and Azure (Cloud, IOT, Microsoft Flow amongst many others).

Our mission is to provide integrated technology solutions that amplify impact and empower our customer’s businesses. We believe technology is the key enabler of exponential growth for us and our customers.

Contact XcelPros today to transform your business.

Call us toll-free – 1.855.411.0585 (or) visit