SETTING REALISTIC ERP EXPECTATIONS

More often than not, many companies make the mistake of jumping right into the ERP selection process without taking the proper time and measures to prepare. It’s important to fist develop an ERP project plan (or roadmap) based on your realistic expectations.

Most aren’t able to develop realistic project plans because they aren’t aware or don’t account for all of the components important to ERP success. Many are largely focused on the technical aspects of their ERP implementation and forget to account for the people and process aspects. It’s important watch for technology-focused mindsets and other mindsets that lead to unrealistic project expectations.

The secret to setting realistic project expectations is understanding the activities that should happen before you even begin to contact an ERP vendor or reseller. These activities include…

 

Once you have a clear understanding of the changes to come and determine the role technology will play in your project, how can you ensure your expectations are realistic? Follow these 8 steps:

 

Develop a Business Case

Many utilize business cases to justify their ERP investments by estimating their return on investment. You’ll want to include strategic goals and identified opportunities to estimate your savings on manual processes. Be sure to include performance metrics in your business case and identify key performance indicators.

 

Communicate with Executives

Executives should be involved throughout your ERP project, especially during the organizational change management phase. Continuous executive involvement will improve organizational but-in efforts and help maintain realistic expectations.

 

Work with your Vendor/Partner/ERP Reseller

Your ERP partner is there to ensure your success. Carefully follow their directions and be sure to ask any and all questions you have. Creating a relationship with constant communication is important for success.

 

Consider Internal Staffing Needs

Internal resources are important to help with process design, system testing and a host of other activities. As you’re building your own implementation plan or ERP roadmap, it will become clear what internal resources you need for each project phase.

 

Ensure Strong Project Governance

Implementation timelines can quickly go astray due to lack of communication between implementation team members. Customization requests, scope increases and other unexpected scenarios need to be met with project governance to quickly analyze and approve or disapprove requests.

 

Account for all Essential Activities

Many project plans overlook essential activities such as:

  • Business process testing
  • Reviewing partners’ statements of work
  • Workshops for end-users
  • Organizational design session
  • Employee training

 

Regularly Adjust Expectations

While your initial project plan may include a timeline, cost estimation, and goals, be prepared to adjust this plan once you actually begin the implementation process. It’s very easy for projects to get delayed or for cost changes to occur. As noted above, you’ll likely encounter scope changes and other requests throughout your project.

 

Don’t forget about Post Go-Live

Your ERP project doesn’t end at go-live. You will need to continually monitor your business performance with KPIs and provide employees with ongoing user training.

 

Your Next Steps

It’s never too early to begin developing your ERP project plan. Before you begin the selection processes, take time to set realistic expectations. ACC Software Solutions team of ERP experts can help you account for all of the essential activities required for successful project. Contact us today!


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