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5 Questions that Will Help You Move from Green-Screen ERP

Person holding a 3D illustration of an ecommerce store.

When do you know it’s time to move from your green-screen ERP solution?

“But it works just fine.”  We hear that a lot. And it is true. Until it isn’t. And then it is a huge mess.

One estimate has the number of IBM AS/400 or iSeries platforms still running is at approximately 100,000 companies. A great number of these legacy systems are running in Manufacturing and Distribution firms. One can’t deny the technology behind workhorses such as AS/400 and other often “green-screen” mainframes was and still is solid. These systems have run steady and performed for these companies starting MANY years ago – and they’re still going.

So why change from green-screen ERP?

If you feel nothing or very little has really changed in your business through the years, consider yourself fortunate that your legacy technology investment very well may continue to suffice.

But consider this:

  • Has your customer’s businesses changed in the years you’ve been doing business with them?
  • Are you always considering how you can better serve your customers or partners?
  • Are they benefitting right now from developments and service enhancements made by other organizations in their business orbit?
  • Have other organizations- including your direct competitors- significantly raised the bar in the level of service they can now provide due, to a large extent, to advancements in information technology?

If your answer to any of these questions is yes, then the time to look for something that will get and keep you competitive for years to come is NOW. 

Front End, Back End…to What End?

ERP systems, as we know, manage “back-end” functions of your business such as finance, purchasing, inventory , and asset management information. Front-end, customer facing functions such as digital commerce applications, may include the ability for customers to search for and, depending on the organization, even purchase products directly.

Optimizing and integrating the front-end systems could allow customers and partners, with the advent of tools such as mobile apps and social media, to interact with you in ways they desire, have become accustomed to and now expect.

On top of this, these customer interactions supply and replenish you with valuable data which can be used to provide better and quicker service. What we’re talking about here is a comprehensive digital business platform, as a ready part of a modern ERP system, which unifies front-end commerce and back-end operations by making sure data is bidirectional.

Historically and to a large extent still, back-end ERP systems and customer facing systems have been relegated to opposite sides of the business. Most organizations through the years have spent some or considerable time and money ad-hoc efforts to integrate the two systems. If senior and dedicated IT management for the holders of these legacy ERP systems were asked how effective this has all been, fair to say the better answers might come not from them but from their customers.

PC Bennett brings their clients the best of both worlds with Acumatica cloud ERP, and a strong understanding of green-screen businesses and their needs.

5 Questions You Must Start Asking Yourself

The case whether to migrate off your legacy system requires substantial amounts of self-introspection and honesty amongst ownership, management, and stakeholders.

These questions should be studied with the utmost of sincerity:

  • Is our business essentially unchanged from when we deployed our legacy systems?
  • Are the businesses of our customers and close partners, in particular to what they require from us, largely unchanged also?
  • Is the technology of our legacy systems being updated?
  • If our company is in a growth pattern or if there are there plans to expand, can our existing technology scale with it?
  • How comfortable are we with our systems’ security?

How PC Bennett Can Help

Let PC Bennett work with your team to assess if it makes business sense to move off your legacy ERP or mainframe system. PC Bennett is a technology consulting founded and run by businesspeople who have worked extensively with organizations like yours.

Read how this customer made their move from a green-screen to a modern ERP and are reaping the rewards.

Call us when you’re ready to talk.