Consider your options carefully and your opportunities are boundless. Be hasty with your decision, however, and disaster can strike. To ensure a stress-free ERP implementation that achieves its objectives and is completed within its budget and deadline, you need an implementation roadmap that properly addresses all your current and future business objectives.
In this post we’ll discuss the key aspects of implementing an ERP solution the right way, to help your organization transition to ERP-enabled operations without a hitch.
Secure executive sponsors by identifying ERP benefits
Getting decision makers on board is crucial for the success of your implementation project. If your organization has many decision makers or business heads, it’s important that they are all on board with the implementation. Make a list of growth obstacles that your organization is currently dealing with or business procedures that aren’t as streamlined as they should be, and then match these challenges to specific advantages that an ERP system brings to the table. This will help you secure buy-in from your company’s executives by presenting real, quantifiable value.
Select your transition team
In ERP implementation, a lot depends on the implementation partner’s interaction with the customer’s team. Make sure that you’ve selected the right person as project manager: someone who can spearhead this growth initiative from your side. The project manager should have enough support with business users to test the system and provide timely input.
Choose a solution that scales
It’s crucial that you pick an ERP solution that enables you to adapt to new challenges and opportunities. It should continue to function optimally under increasing workloads to allow your organization to grow without worrying about performance bottlenecks. There’s nothing worse than spending months or years on an ERP implementation, and then discovering that your company has already outgrown it.
Prepare for data migration
While transitioning to a new ERP system, successful data migration is essential for uninterrupted business operations. Decide beforehand which information would cause needless clutter and isn’t worth carrying forward to your new platform. Ensure that all important master data is transferred in a cleansed form.
Align analytics capabilities with business goals
Data analysis is a key advantage of ERP platforms, and business information relies on analytics to tell a meaningful story and guide decision making. Most ERP platforms provide a wide array of out-of-the-box analytical capabilities, templates, and customization options for reports and charts. Your analytics tools should be aligned with your business needs from day one. Include custom reports and dashboards as a core component of your implementation plan to improve time to value.
Drive organizational change management
Your organization’s employees follow daily routines that are resistant to major changes like the ones caused by ERP implementation. That’s why employee buy-in is just as important as executive buy-in. By continually collecting feedback and keeping personnel informed about various stages of the platform rollout, you can set realistic expectations about the results of the project and how these changes will affect their day-to-day activities.
Engage in transformation
ERP solutions are designed to simplify operations, so at least some of your employees’ post-implementation roles will be different. For example, if you currently process invoices manually, then implementing an ERP system will probably see the employees that used to process invoices take up less repetitive, more creative roles. Plan ahead so all impacted employees find a meaningful new role that offers real business value. Your plan should cover retraining and other forms of support as workers assume new responsibilities and become familiar with the new ERP solution.
The tips listed above will save you time, money, and many sleepless nights. Remember that your ERP implementation partner is a valuable resource that can help you choose the right solution, create contingency plans, allocate resources, train your employees, and identify training-related challenges. Please contact Systems to learn more about how an experienced partner can make your ERP implementation a success.