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A Quick Guide to Finding the Best ERP System for Your Apparel Business

  • Posted by Kanika Sinha
  • January 22, 2024
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Recent data reveals that the revenue of the global apparel market exceeded $1.7 trillion in 2023, and the industry is expected to register positive growth in the coming years. According to Statista, the sector is set to rise to almost $2 trillion by 2027. 

Wondering how you can be a part of this growing industry? A good starting point would be to enhance your business functions and processes with Enterprise Resource Planning, popularly known as ERP.

An ERP system can help you plan and allocate resources, automate processes, and improve internal collaboration and communication. Besides, these systems facilitate informed decision-making by providing a single source of accurate data for the entire business.

Understanding ERP

It is software that helps manage day-to-day business activities such as accounting, procurement, resource allocation, project management, reporting and compliance, risk management, and supply chain operations.

A complete ERP suite for apparel firms includes features like production planning, inventory management and controls, quality management, customer relationship management, logistics, and order management.

It sounds like quite a software, but let’s find out how to choose the best ERP system for your clothing enterprise.

Pro tips for choosing a suitable ERP for your apparel business

1. Determine your business requirements

The first and most crucial step is to ascertain, early on, the features and functions your clothing enterprise needs in an ERP system. This entails undertaking a comprehensive business review and needs assessment to determine which business processes and workflows the ERP software will take over and remain independent. In this regard, you can consider answering the following questions:

  • What problems are you trying to solve? 
  • How will success be measured?
  • What goals will the ERP system help you achieve?
  • Will your company introduce new products, enter new markets, acquire or merge with a new company?
  • How would you like to combine processes for greater efficiency?

2. Consider the costs and associated expenses

ERP software costs vary based on the vendor, required modules, deployment type (cloud-based or on-premises), third-party implementation, and user licenses.

Additionally, there are upfront costs for ERP deployment, such as licensing fees, annual maintenance, hardware (for on-premises setups), data conversion, custom coding, testing, training, and vendor/consultant support. 

Remember that higher costs do not necessarily equate to a better system. Hence, carefully assess the costs and ROI when choosing your ERP partner.

3. Figure out the ease of integration

If you intend to continue using existing applications for specific business processes, select an ERP system with industry-standard interfaces that easily integrate with those applications.

Popular ERP systems for the clothing sector often have certified integrations with the industry’s typical business applications, including e-commerce storefronts, point-of-sale systems, and online marketplaces. These pre-configured integrations ensure that core business processes can remain intact if needed.

4. Create a detailed ERP implementation strategy

ERP implementation requires critical consideration owing to its broad-ranging features impacting various business aspects. Each ERP vendor’s offering is unique; some systems seamlessly integrate with current business processes, while others necessitate users to alter their workflows. Map out a detailed implementation plan for smooth ERP deployment. This entails:

  • Identifying potential stumbling blocks early on.
  • Addressing critical questions in the decision-making process, such as retraining needs, leadership for the implementation team, and change management strategies. 
  • Planning your ERP implementation timeline while considering product complexity and your company’s size. 
  • Setting realistic expectations about ERP rollout. Overpromising and underdelivering on costs and scope can cause unnecessary pushback from company stakeholders and executives.

5. Opt for scalability

Remember the growth of your apparel business when choosing your ERP partner. Several factors influence the ability of an ERP solution to scale. It is often advisable to start by testing one or two modules before committing to the complete ERP package.

Additionally, evaluate whether the ERP partner under consideration is flexible and can customize solutions for your unique and complex business needs. Further, game out future business scenarios, such as expansion within the US or internationally, to understand whether the ERP solution will functionally fit in the short and long term.

6. Ensure to garner executive and team support

Securing executive buy-in is crucial for ERP success, given its widespread impact. Utilize the business requirements review to showcase the ERP system’s potential value and gain support from senior management. 

Consider appointing an executive sponsor, such as a CEO, COO, or CFO, to champion the project. The executive sponsor is critical in driving organizational change, acting as the project’s chief evangelist, promoting benefits, and addressing challenges to ensure successful implementation.


Choosing the right ERP system for your enterprise can be a challenging process. Apparel companies that choose well are rewarded with a system that enables them to work smarter, improving efficiency and visibility across business processes. At the same time, it allows firms to make better, data-driven decisions across the entire operation, ultimately positioning them to tap into the booming apparel market.

Need help in selecting the ERP right system for your company? Full Stack Finance has been the one-stop solution for startups and high-growth businesses. Our essential business solutions include accounting, finance, taxes, CFOs, and HR services. Talk to an expert today.


Kanika Sinha
Kanika Sinha

Kanika is an enthusiastic content writer who craves to push the boundaries and explore uncharted territories. With her exceptional writing skills and in-depth knowledge of business-to-business dynamics, she creates compelling narratives that help businesses achieve tangible ROI. When not hunched over the keyboard, you can find her sweating it out in the gym, or indulging in a marathon of adorable movies with her young son.

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