February 20, 2023
By Steve Levy, Infor VP of Enterprise Architecture for Distribution
For decades, centralized IT departments were the driving force behind business transformation initiatives. However, in recent years, business leaders have taken the reins in pushing for digital transformation, and this has given rise to the importance of composable ERP.
Historically, businesses relied on monolithic ERP systems that acted as the center of gravity for the entire organization. These systems provided a single source of truth for data and streamlined operations. However, the rise of cloud technology and SaaS applications has challenged this notion, with many business leaders favoring a best-of-breed approach to application selection.
Composable ERP is the desire for businesses to select the best applications for each individual function, and then seamlessly integrate them into a cohesive whole. This approach enables businesses to stay nimble, with the ability to quickly add or replace applications as needed. It also enables more personalized experiences for employees and customers.
In the past, implementing a composable ERP system was a complex and costly endeavor, often requiring extensive customization and integration efforts. However, newer cloud-based ERP solutions, such as Infor’s CloudSuites, are designed with composability in mind from the ground up.
Infor’s CloudSuites offer a suite of cloud-based applications that are built to work together seamlessly, but also provide the flexibility to integrate with other best-of-breed applications as needed. This enables businesses to easily swap out applications as their needs change, without sacrificing the integrity of their ERP systems.
With the rise of composable ERP, it’s clear that the IT department is no longer the sole driver of digital transformation. Business leaders are taking charge, and they are demanding the flexibility and agility that a composable ERP system can provide. By embracing this approach, businesses can stay ahead of the curve and adapt to changing market conditions with ease.
How should distributors best use composable solutions?
Distributors can approach composable ERP by first identifying their business needs and pain points and then researching and selecting the best-of-breed applications that best address those specific needs. It’s important for distributors to consider applications that integrate seamlessly with their current technology stack and that are built with composability in mind.
Once the applications have been selected, distributors can then focus on integrating them into their ERP system. This may involve customization and integration efforts, but newer cloud-based ERP solutions such as Infor's CloudSuites make this process easier and more cost-effective.
To fully take advantage of composable ERP, distributors should continuously evaluate their applications and be open to swapping them out as needed. This requires a mindset of agility and flexibility, but it can also provide a competitive advantage by enabling distributors to quickly adapt to changing market conditions and customer needs and further automate their operations.
In the same way that yoga pants can be mixed and matched with different tops and accessories to create a personalized and versatile look, composable ERP enables distributors to select and integrate the best applications to create a personalized and versatile technology stack that meets their specific business needs. By taking advantage of composable ERP, distributors can differentiate themselves from competitors and stay ahead of the curve in the ever-evolving world of business technology.
To learn more about how you can compose the right solutions to address your most pressing challenges and automate your business processes, check out this MDM Research report, “How and Where Distributors can Leverage Automation in 2023.” The report examines ways in which distributors can navigate the journey of automation, expanding across every area of the business — customer facing, back office, warehouse and delivery.