Globalization presents numerous business and technology challenges. Enterprise resource planning (ERP) is an indispensable tool for managing these challenges and a mission-critical component of any globalization strategy. The information made available through ERP is central to providing visibility to key performance indicators (KPIs) and meeting corporate objectives, yet ERP is often overlooked because companies focus only on supply chain issues. Global ERP provides a technologically sound architecture that supports global visibility and transactional interoperability, without which a company’s growth can be seriously stunted.

This paper discusses specific business and technological challenges involved in globalization and outlines key strategies of an effective ERP implementation. These strategies include: careful evaluation of the use of shared services, from both a business and a technological standpoint; automation and streamlining of workflows between suppliers, customers, and manufacturing sites; and standardization of ERP implementations across a global enterprise.