Research: Manufacturers explore social media benefits for ERP
Enterprise resources planning and social media will provide value when integrated, according to 63% of those surveyed in a recent study conducted by Reed’s RBI Interactive Research Group on behalf of IFS. The research was designed to better understand how manufacturers are exploring ways to leverage their enterprise platforms for integration of social media; environmental management and measurement, and aging workforce.
Methodology: During the month of October and November, surveys were emailed to subscribers of Manufacturing Business Technology (MBT) magazine. To supplement the data, names were also drawn from Plant Engineering and Control Engineering . Respondents were pre-qualified for being involved in the evaluation, selection or purchase of enterprise software (enterprise resource planning [ERP], enterprise asset management [EAM] etc.) used within at the company. Individuals were employed in companies estimating 2009 revenues at $100 million or more in revenue. As incentive, the first 200 survey respondents were offered a $10 Starbucks gift card.
Results are based on 268 completed surveys. At a 95% confidence level, results are accurate within a margin of error of + or – 6%, RBI Interative Research Group said.
Some of the findings follow:
As ERP tools start to offer integration with online social networking tools like Facebook, LinkedIn, etc., what uses could you see for this type of functionality?
63% Perceive value in ERP/social media integration
37% Gather information on what is being said about your company or competitors
29% Gather social networking profiles on prospects and customers as individuals
29% Product training
23% Integrate with software-specific social network tool so we can get context-specific software tips and tricks from users at other companies
20% Tie information from social networks into customer company records
37% See no potential use/value
How important do you think integration with social media tools will be in the ERP selection process in the coming years?
6% Extremely important
27% Very important
44% Not very important
22% Not at all important
Are there any other criteria that you feel will impact the ERP selection process in the coming years? What are they? Of respondents 65% said no. Of the 35% that said yes, number of responses, and comments, include:
-"Integrated development with associations and other social entities. Linking data to other business software."
-"The ability to integrate with third party software and provide ease of use and flexibility."
-"Ease of integration of multiple external systems. Integration with CRM software such as salesforce.com."
– "Cost and ease of use. Do not need a system where you would have to hire technical people to manage it."
– "Cost of switching, cost of modifications."
7 ease of use, and…
– "Easy to use for end users and for IT departments to maintain."
– "Ease of use, ability to migrate with little impact on the business, a true understanding of supply chain, ability to support a multi-site organization"
– "The ability to keep our databases, out IP, and our customers information secure."
Reed Business Information, RBI, is the parent company of Manufacturing Business Technology, Control Engineering, and Plant Engineering .
See also: Facebook at the Factory: Manufacturing software must become more like social media, study says
Also read from MBT : What I Learned: Why Social Networking in PLM is More than Just Collaboration .
– Mark T. Hoske, online product editor, Manufacturing Business Technology , MBT www.mbtmag.com