Replacing software, do I have to?

Many companies question existing software.  “This software was written on and old XXXXX system and still works today, but we are not sure if we couldn’t get more out of a new system?” some say.  Or more likely, “We have this system and it is just not doing what we need.”

The interesting thing about both of these statements is not about the system but about the process.  Both have an underlying assumption that it is the system which has somehow changed, when it is just doing the process it was programmed to do, when implemented.

That doesn’t mean that the process hasn’t changed, but the system hasn’t changed with it.  The process may have gotten better or worse, but because it doesn’t implement our process, it is the system that is in question.

Just for the sake of clarity, I do have a WMS provider with whom I am engaged.  I don’t always see them as a solution, because sometimes the existing software they have just need to be modified to the current process.  (Note: I didn’t say better process here).  Sometimes this vendor does not do what the target process calls, and we need to use someone else.  All of this is okay.

Many times it is cheaper to have someone who understands systems and software evaluate the process and tune the system to match the company’s needs.

I have seen companies with a piece of software, which could track all the items they were keeping in Excel spreadsheets, but because they didn’t see the process change and didn’t know the software, were doing extra work.

So do you still want to consider replacing that system for more money than fixing the existing one? This is okay, but how do you know you won’t be back to the same place next year? Do you really know if your processes are good processes or if they are contributing to this bad feeling you have about the existing systems? Will you solve anything?

I can help you by evaluating your process in terms of these systems.  If you are interested in a free initial discussion, please contact me.  I have been known to tell people they are on the right path and I don’t believe my services are necessary.  However, it may be that hiring me could save you hundreds of thousands of dollars in mistakes.