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system integration, make sense or not?

We are a Canadian manufacturer and distributor for customized home improvement products. Currently we employ 3 systems internally, 2 cloud based software(let's call them SaaS 1& SaaS 2) and an ERP/accounting software sitting on the on-premise server . SaaS 1 was custom designed for all technical aspects of the business including sales quoting, manufacturing(BOMs) and some purchase orders. SaaS 2 handles distribution, i.e. tracking job progress, scheduling, payments, sales/operational reports etc. Now the management wants to somehow integrate all 3 systems, for example, to link POs generated from SaaS 1 to the PO module in ERP; link revenue recognition and customer payments to AR module; and to feed inventory transactions captured in SaaS 1 to ERP Inventory module for reconciliation and adjustment. What are the main considerations here to make such decision? I'd like to hear from your experience with system integration if your company also relies on 3 or more separate systems serving for different purposes/function areas? Thanks

Answers

Topic Expert
Barrett Peterson
Title: Senior Manager, Actg Stnds & Analysis
Company: TTX
(Senior Manager, Actg Stnds & Analysis, TTX) |

We integrate fairly extensively from our ERP [SAP], to data systems for revenue accounting, fixed asset additions from a large asset management system, and cost billing and reporting. We also use the integrated materials managment and purchase oder modules in SAP. Integration is laborious and can be difficult to achieve so the driveers are cost/effort, internal controls, and decision useful information. The size and complexity of your operation are a factor. Lastly, but importantly, data management and "master data" assembly are important to integration efforts, and not always easy. You may also need to consider data "ownership" perceptions and change management requirements which often accompany integration efforts to ensure their success.

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