ERPs: A good idea for HR to take a pass on

It would be great if all company business systems could talk to each other and share the same database, technologies and IT support staff, but given the complexities at present, this goal still remains on the horizon.
By Al Doran
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 07/12/2004

First off, what is ERP? It is commonly known to mean “enterprise resource planning” software, though most observers would say planning is a misnomer since few systems have done much of that.

However, emphasis should be placed on the word “enterprise,” as that is the true ambition of ERP — to integrate all (or most) departmental information systems in a company onto a single computer system and in turn service all those department’s individual needs.

That is a lofty objective: delivering a single information system that serves the needs of human resources and payroll and its customers, finance and its customers, and warehouse and distribution and customers. If the organization happens to be in the business of higher education, the system would potentially include the complex world of student information. Replace student information with patient care if the business of the enterprise is health care.