Currently, there are two options for ERP system development. When a firm hires a developer for creating an ERP (Enterprise resource planning) application, the developer has two choices.
- Off-the-shelf ERP solutions: In this, the developer buys boxed solutions such as SAP. They are ready to use and doesn’t take much time.
- Custom ERP application development: In this, the developer builds the ERP system from scratch. They develop the application keeping in mind the needs of the client and system.
An ERP system is a critical business tool that you will be using for various missions for a long time. And that is why it should be effective and suit your business requirement. But what if the available choices of ERP solutions don’t address your concerns? Or you want to complete ownership of the system? At such time, the pretty obvious solution is to create your own ERP software.
In this article, we will talk about how to build your own ERP system from scratch. You will get the answer to all the relevant questions like cost, technology and time duration needed for this here.
The total revenue generated by ERP software.
How To Build An ERP From Scratch? – The Development Approach
If you want custom ERP software, you need to follow the development process. ERP is a repetitive process as the firm needs new modules often and according to their requirements. ERP development process is a step-by-step procedure that includes:
Define The Project Goal
Here the client tells the developer what is their goal behind investing in a custom ERP software development. The client and the IT department handling the development must find their footing for the project to complete.
Blueprint And Wireframing
A blueprint really helps with the smooth running of the whole process. That is why it should have all the crucial and minute details. The blueprint must have these details:
- Data about the process of development
- Timeframe allotted
- Resource the developer will get for the development
The creators of the blueprint are every individual involved with the ERP system. It will include- developers, managers, IT leaders and sometimes the end user of the ERP.
Wireframing will involve stating all the components that you need to involve in the ERP development procedure. It will help integrate the business operation and data with the software.
During wireframing, you also need to choose which type of custom ERP system solution you want. The available options are:
- Client/Server ERP system: It will work on user’s computers locally while your networking hardware will store the database.
- Web-based ERP system: It will run on the external web server. It is accessible from any device using any simple web browser
Knowing the type of system is crucial when you are defining how to build an ERP from scratch.
Now, it’s time for developers to gather the technology required for ERP mobile application development. It includes deciding which database, backend, front-end, and other technology to use. Here you will decide which platform and database you want to use. All this depends heavily on the stage of wireframing and blueprint.
Hosting the system
You can host your ERP either on local servers or cloud. The decision regarding hosing it depends on the financial and political aspect of the enterprise. The cloud is a better option because:
- When you build an ERP, and host it on your local server, you will need maintenance staff. The same is not true for the cloud.
- Using cloud means better data security
- It is affordable especially for small/startup businesses as it doesn’t require additional equipment.
- It is flexible as the enterprise’s customer base keeps growing, and the cloud is scalable.
Transferring the old database
Now that you are developing a new ERP system, you need to transfer the old database into this. The storing of the database should be in accordance with departments. It will involve the creation of tables which will have different components of the firm. Also, provide a link between the tables for organizing your information neatly.
Enterprises use a lot of canned applications which are crucial for a variety of operations. The developers either have to consolidate the legacy apps to the ERP development process or create new ones.
For creating a new application, you will need to write new codes. But you can use the components of the legacy apps for reconfiguring some parts. This step of the process needs a lot of work as developers have to retain massive pieces of software that the company needs. Other vintage software requires a great deal of re-configuring.
Also, talking about ERP system development, the developer’s major work is to create a UX/UI. They work with protocols to develop a presentation platform for the end-user of the ERP software.
Test and Review
Now, it’s time for the developer to test and review whether the system meets the said requirement or not. There are two ways to review this:
- They can use specific data to test if the system meets the features and functionality specified in the blueprint.
- The developers can also release the system to some people. They would use the ERP system as the end-user. It is a more comprehensive way to test your ERP system.
How to build an ERP system from scratch? – Best Technologies
To create your own ERP system, you will need software and database. Let’s see what choices we have.
It includes developing application, interface systems, and software. Developers not only develop and implement new apps, but they also re-configure legacy apps. All this requires skilled developers who are fluent in coding and know about ERP web app development. They should have computing and tools knowledge related to custom ERP development.
List of popular software’s that you will need for ERP software development:
.Net– The .Net framework by Microsoft is quite popular when it comes to creating a powerful ERP from scratch.
Java– It is widely used by developers to build ERP software. It is because you can run it on a platform or operating system.
Python-For ERP web application development, Python is the best.
The data of any enterprise is their biggest asset. To store it, they need a secure and reliable database. It is the job of the developer to find the best available database for the ERP system and the company’s data. It should be such that migrating data to ERP is easy too.
Here are some of the popular options:
MySQL: The most popular choice for an ERP system database is MySQL. It is open-source, reliable and has a big community. Also, it provides security, consistency, and availability of data anytime.
SQL: Oracle SQL is another robust and popular database. It is cross-platform and can run on many environments.
Databases are critical to your ERP system development. Make sure you are aware of every available choice. Make the decision based on your requirements and the pros and cons of the database.
How Long Does It Take To Implement An ERP System?
How long it takes to implement an ERP system is based on its modules and functionality.
- For a small business, the timeframe is between 1-3 months,
- For a medium-sized business, the timeframe is between 3-6 months and,
- For an Enterprise, the timeframe is around one year or more.
Also, these factors influence the time and cost of an ERP system:
- An ERP system releases frequently as a prototype will take more time. It will take time developing and implementing modules in such a system is a costly and long process.
- A custom ERP system with complex functionality requires codes, data migration, and integration. All this increases the development time.
How much it costs to create your own ERP system?
The total expenditure of developing an ERP system depends on various factors like:
Cost of the features:
The number of features your ERP web application affects the cost. The features of the software depend on the number of users and their roles. If users are in large number, their role will increase which will require more features.
For ERP software development, you require a team. The ERP developers are either in-house or outsourced. The decision between the two is made after analyzing the tech skills of in-house developers.
If you choose to outsource, you have many options. You can choose for developers from different regions who have the skills and knowledge you require. The cost of outsourcing depends on the region:
- If you outsource to developers in the USA, the rate will be $180 or more.
- In Eastern Europe, the same quality app costs $45 per hour.
- In India, the rate is, even more, less with the same quality.
With so many factors influencing the cost of ERP system development, telling actual cost is difficult. But the estimated price for the same is:
- For Small Businesses – $25K-$50K
- For Medium Businesses – $50K-$100K
- For Enterprise – $300K-$500K
Note: Like every technology, ERP system too can become obsolete. That is why it is necessary that you keep updating it. Upgrading it will also increase the overall cost of ERP system development. The cost of updating and maintaining the ERP includes- hardware, software, and the upgrade.
A cost breakdown for ERP system development.
To create your own ERP system is a challenging task. But they are better than the off-the-shelf ERP system. They provide you with better features and are flexible. So, it is easy to add functionality to them later as and when needed. Investing in ERP system development from scratch is a great idea, and you should go for it.