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The future of ERP: expert predictions for 2018

By Mandy Richardson

ERP Predictions for 2018

We’ve chatted with six of the top ERP influencers to find out what they think is next in the ERP market. From AI to Blockchain, the experts have laid out the future of ERP for 2018. Here are their ERP predictions.


Bernard Golden - ERP Predictions for 2018 | Washington Frank International

Bernard Golden @bernardgolden 


“The ongoing shift to cloud computing will continue and accelerate. One of the drivers for adoption is scale: most enterprises are handling greater numbers and variety of goods, services, customer interactions, and marketing activities. This will cause more transactions to hit ERP systems and result in enterprises asking for a new cloud-oriented ERP — not an ERP system that resides in the cloud, but an ERP system suited for a cloud-resident enterprise. Look for ERP customer/vendor discussions in 2018 that center around how ERP systems can help enterprises become cloud-native organizations.”


Brian Dunn - ERP Predictions 2018 | Washington Frank International

Brian W. Dunn @brianwdunn


“2018 is the year for cryptocurrency and ERP to become more tightly integrated. With increasingly pent-up demand from an increasingly more valuable currency, people are looking for more ways to take money off the table. They’re looking to spend cryptocurrency on real goods and services.  In 2018, there will be tighter integration between ERP systems and coin wallets, especially with ERP systems that already handle multiple currencies. The integrations will extend to and become more prevalent on e-commerce sites as well.”


G. Brett Beaubouef ERP Predictions | Washington Frank International

Brett Beaubouef @gbeaubouef

ERP the Right Way!

“The only area that I am fixated on is reducing the cost of ERP Cloud implementations.  It will be a strategic competitive advantage – I’m just waiting for the market to catch up.  The ratio of ERP software cost to ERP implementation cost has increased from 3:1 to 6:1.  It is only a matter of time before the ERP market forces ERP vendors to drastically reduce implementation costs while maintaining a sufficient level of customer enablement. In my 25 years of ERP consulting experience, I have never encountered a single customer that utilized over 80% of the ERP software.  Given the lack of utilization and the money needed for Cloud ERP implementations, I am convinced this is a problem that finally must be solved!”

Read more on this topic in the article, The Science of Cloud ERP Utilization.


PJ Jakovljevic ERP Predictions | Washington Frank International

PJ Jakovljevic @pjtec @TECTweets

“New ERP software will be increasingly built on an innovative cloud architecture designed from the ground up to handle the massive computational challenges of processing global enterprise data in real-time. These platforms will feature the following traits:

  • microservices and open API’s for easy integrations and extensions
  • a foundational AI engine, which enables predictive and intelligent solutions
  • fast in-memory computing with the ability to process large volumes of data in an instant
  • a domain model with flexible and adaptable rules that manage workflows and modules’ interactions
  • a unified information architecture that eliminates the need for a separate data warehouse, and simplifies access to analytics for all users

ERP users have traditionally spent too much time verifying the past and on time-consuming, resource-heavy operations such as batch transaction processing, the account closing process, and periodic audits, which help to identify issues only once it’s too late to act on them. The ERP users of the future will need to use augmented intelligence (AI) tools. Some potential use case scenarios. For example, behind the curtain, AI tools could spot irregular transactions, ones that have incorrect values, or could interest users, and prompt them to review transactions. AI bots will also contribute to collaborative conversations, and users may be able to ask the bot (via conversational UI’s as well as by typing) to perform tasks or for information, for example,“What’s our Quick Ratio?” The bot will then show the user performance cards and reports to explain the insights.

The digital assistant will also help users increase their productivity. By monitoring and learning from users’ ERP software usage, it can adjust what users see on their screens to reflect their preferences and behaviors and simplify everyday tasks. As the AI tool gets smarter, it will derive insights from user’s data and prompt them with opportunities and alerts via predictive capabilities.”


Eric Kimberling - ERP Predictions |

Eric Kimberling @erickimberling

Panorama Consulting Solutions

“With the global economy continuing to improve, more companies scaling for growth, and capital investments continuing to gain momentum, more companies will be more likely to invest in their digital transformation initiatives. All of these factors will lead more companies to revisit their enterprise system strategies going into the new year and beyond. Vendors will be less likely to introduce new functionality or provide long-term support for these dated products, leading many organizations to conclude that they have no choice but to migrate to more modern enterprise technologies. An increasing number of organizations are becoming seemingly allergic to the term “organizational change management” … meaning organizations must recognize the need for proven organizational change expertise and toolsets. 2018 Will Be a Year of Transition…”

More on Eric’s predictions can be found in his article, Top Predictions for the ERP Software Industry in 2018.


ERP Expert Laurie McCabe | Washington Frank International

Laurie McCabe @lauriemccabe @smbgroup

“ERP is set for a major refresh. Vendors are infusing ERP with more AI and machine learning capabilities. This will make it easier for businesses to get up and running more quickly with ERP, and to quickly automate repetitive, time-consuming tasks–and to get better insights into what’s happening in their businesses. Integrating IoT with ERP–and with AI/ML–will also come into better focus. IoT sensors can bring new data directly into ERP systems. By providing companies with effective ways to analyze and use this data, companies better automate functions such as re-orders and replenishment–and more.”

What do you think? Is there something else you think will be up-and-coming for 2018? Let us know in the comments.

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