Getting a new ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) software is a tedious, time-consuming process. Many companies look to hire an ERP consultant, with the hopes that the consultant’s knowledge will help make the final decision easier and make the entire evaluation take less time. The problem, however, is that a vast majority of ERP consultants are biased. They are working for a vendor or various vendors for a kickback on any sales they help make. With this being the case, do you think they have your best interests in mind at all times like they should? Here are three questions to ask/signs to tell how biased a consultant is.
1: Ask, “Do you benefit from selling a specific ERP solution?”
It never hurts to ask the obvious and gage the body language and vocal cues. If they answer by using words like, “My specialty is with…” or “my clients usually end up liking…” those might be signs that they are working with that ERP vendor.
2: Ask, “Do you charge based on the savings you negotiate in the ERP purchase?”
Consultants will tell you that they do not make money from the ERP vendors after leading you to make a decision on one, but often times, they do get incentives, which costs you money. For example, a consultant may sell you on an ERP vendor, and then negotiate to lower the price for you (when in reality, the price was jacked up to begin with so that the consultant looks good and gets a kickback, and the ERP provider still gets their full price).
3: Observe how he/she references to specific ERPs during or after demos and discussions.
If the consultant routinely refers to the positive side of an ERP, even when shown directly a negative feature, that would be a warning sign. For example, say you come to the accounting part of the demo and the company CFO says that this won’t work because it is too limited. If the consultant says something like, “Well the rest of it works….I don’t see this being too much of a problem” you should realize at that point that he/she might not have your best interests in mind.