The Canadian government has several programs each year for Canadian companies to digitally transform their businesses. These programs may be available for specific industry verticals, such as Automotive or Food and Beverage. The other programs, on the other hand, may help with specific initiatives. Such as digitally transforming businesses or exploring industry4.0 opportunities. Some Canadian companies are also government-approved digital advisors through the CDAP program. And these grant opportunities might only be available if you work with Canadian ERP consulting companies.
1. Local Expertise
Lack of in-person site visits could make or break an ERP implementation. While ERP consultants work with a variety of businesses and may have prior experience working with a similar business, each business has its own unique processes. And to develop an understanding of these processes, the team must survey the site. Closely observe users and how they perform their daily operations. As well as interact with them to develop a deeper understanding of implied requirements.
The other reason why ERP projects fail is that key details are lost in translation. For example, if the entire team who is actually implementing the project is working remotely and only the sales team is available for on-site interactions, the core team will have a hard time following the requirements and implementing them aligned with the business needs.
2. In-person Support
If you are a business that hardly requires hardware interaction, for example, say if you are a professional services company or a consulting firm, you might never need in-person assistance.
However, if you are a manufacturing or distribution business and your users are not as tech-savvy, most likely, you will be automating your warehouse as well as the shop floor. If they face issues while using barcode readers or recording time on the shop-floor monitor, they would require in-person assistance. You might also require assistance with label printing etc. This could even be a more pressing need if you don’t have an in-house IT to help with your issues. A local consultant would be handy if you are not able to ship your orders or invoice your customers due to hardware or training issues.
3. Canadian regulations
Canada has specific nuances when it comes to its tax structure. For example, how HST and GST taxes are computed and how they are reported. The laws around fixed assets are always changing, and it requires the consultant to be knowledgeable of local laws and regulations. Finally, there are specific provincial taxes, such as environmental taxes on shipped goods in each province.
Requirements such as these may not even be supported by the ERP product as they are highly localized. While some custom development may still be required for these requirements, you can at least save some time by hiring consultants who are already trained with the local laws and regulations.
4. Cross-border Process Expertise
Most Canadian businesses transact with US suppliers and customers. They also purchase raw materials from or ship finished goods to the US. If you have any cross-border transactions as part of your business, you might have specific documentation requirements for NAFTA, such as a certificate of origin.
Unless you are a very low-volume business and you plan to produce this documentation manually, most likely, you would require this documentation to be produced by the ERP. Canadian ERP consulting companies have knowledgeable in order to help you with these needs.
5. Intercompany Expertise
If you transact with the US, most likely, you may have a US entity to do business with the US customers. If so, it’s also very likely that you will be performing some inter-company transactions. In some cases, if you also have a holding company, you may have a need to consolidate your financial statements to be able to report at the parent company level.
To capture inter-company transactions and their taxes appropriately, the consultant must have prior knowledge of inter-company transactions as they relate to the US as well as Canadian regulations.
6. Bank Format Expertise
If you plan to integrate with Canadian customers or suppliers, they might have unique messaging requirements compliant with Canadian regulations.
Also, if you plan to integrate with banks, the EFT message files must be structured as required by Canadian banks. The consultant must be familiar with messaging formats and EFT messages or they will require more time for their own training before they can help you.
7. Grant Application Expertise
The Canadian government offers several programs to help small to medium-sized businesses. Most of these programs have unique requirements for their eligibility. Based on our experience, a lot of applications get rejected due to a misunderstanding of program requirements. Our partners have deep expertise and are always updated with the programs that may be offered by federal, provincial, or local governments.
8. Requirement for Grants
If you plan to apply for government or tax benefits for your ERP implementation or training, most programs mandate working with a Canadian company as the Canadian government is trying to maximize the benefits they are offering to local small businesses.
The consultant may also have special pricing promotions for Canadian ERP consulting companies as they might be getting tax benefits from the government to work with Canadian customers. Working with a Canadian company will solidify your chances of being eligible for these benefits and promotions.