ERPs can get in the way of issuing effective RFPs

Most companies have subscribed to one ERP or MM management system or another and did so years ago. What started with simple materials management software has grown exponentially into full-blown enterprise-wide resource programs. ERPs were a boon to the energy industry especially in the downturns because they did a lot of the heavy lifting.   There was, however,  underlying issues that seemed to get lost in the process and as these systems continue to evolve the problem could get worse. The issues are two-fold. The first has to do with configuring the systems.  Just getting these complex systems to operate within the corporate model was a harrowing task.  One of the standard documents housed in the system was the company terms and conditions.  Terms and conditions that Supply Managment would use when ordering goods and services.  As I have said before, one size does not fit all, but SCMs’ personnel were trained or told to trust and use what was provided in the system.  And they did.  But more often than not new vendors would challenge them and when an agreement on the changed wording was made it was done outside of the system.  Therefore issues around a particular article that happened repeatedly and might have made the case for updating the T&C’s in the system where never captured.  Needless to say, a lot of time was wasted in negotiations that almost always resulting in acceptance of the vendor’s demand for changes in wording. legal’s concern   The second came from blind acceptance and reliance on

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