Digital Advisory Services

Internal ERP vs. Third-Party Reporting Tools: Time to Switch?

Posted on June 8, 2023 by

Elly Mioduszewski

Elly Mioduszewski

Ben Smith

Ben Smith

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ERP DashboardBusiness owners face a daunting array of choices when it comes to data management tools. One big decision point is whether to commit to an internal ERP reporting system or go with a third-party platform (such as Domo, for example). 

There are many benefits to using native ERP reporting and many solutions offer excellent functionality. However, businesses tend to outgrow existing functionality, needing customizations, additional data connections and a broader range of metric and chart options. Many businesses find more value in cloud-enabled third-party platforms that offer greater flexibility, easier customization, and more timely business insights. 

Get to Information You Can Use Faster 

One of the most valuable advantages of platforms like Domo over traditional ERP systems is reporting power and simplicity. ERP dashboards usually give you limited “point in time” snapshots. Domo’s historical visualization capabilities allow you to convert rigid tables into intuitive and easily configurable graphic views that include vital real-time information. 

While some ERP systems may allow custom reporting, getting there could require months of analyst time or costly engineering support to create custom reporting. Third-party reporting tools can get you more complete and flexible results in a matter of weeks or days. The whole point of data management is to be able to make informed business decisions and act on them in moments of peak opportunity. 

See More of Your Business in One Place 

Most companies have at least two systems generating vital data. Some can have 100 or more when you bring things like process automation, robotics, or compliance into the picture. Domo’s reporting tools offer a built-in interface that allows you to bring these data sources together in one simplified and unified view. 

While a few internal ERP solutions may allow you to collect data from “outside” sources, reporting is usually not their core function. This can make integration slow, cumbersome, and expensive. Consistent with cloud-based third-party options, Domo’s architecture allows you to easily integrate all data sources (whether they are in the cloud or on-premises) giving you centralized visibility into your entire business on demand. 

Unlike the fixed and limited reporting options of many internal ERP systems, third-party data management platforms can alert you to crucial data changes when they matter most. Domo can quickly help you drill down from an up-to-the-minute trend visualization to granular issue that requires action. 

Save Time and Infuse Your Business with Greater Efficiency 

Installing an ERP solution can come with costly “rip and replace” migrations that can overload your teams or leave them flying blind while the new system comes up to speed. Third-party platforms offer intuitive setup, with dashboards that can be personalized for every user without coding. 

The modular, app-based concept on which top third-party reporting tools are built helps disparate teams focus on what they do best. Rather than impeding their work to fit ERP system limitations, Domo meets them where they are with easy role-based customization. From sourcing to production to sales, your people are free to innovate, boost productivity, and make more informed choices based on real business intelligence. 

Another advantage of third-party reporting tools is more robust security capabilities, along with complete data governance functionality. This gives your information technology teams more confidence in mitigating threats to your data and intellectual property, as well as simplifying important compliance and regulatory tasks. 

Continue the Conversation 

Clayton & McKervey advises clients in the industrial automation, architecture & engineering, and manufacturing & distribution sectors on process improvement, automation opportunities and financial reporting. If you are considering ways that data integration can help make your business more efficient and profitable, we would welcome the opportunity to talk with you about your individual needs. Reach out today to learn more. 

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Elly Mioduszewski

Senior Manager, Consulting

Elly is an integral member of the firm's digital advisory group, helping owners leverage data analytics and improve their business processes.

Ben Smith

Shareholder, Consulting

Ben leads the firm’s consulting group, helping middle-market clients optimize results through transaction services and digital advisory support.

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