What is ERP implementation?
An ERP implementation refers to the rollout of enterprise resource planning software within a business. It typically requires extensive planning and a significant investment. That's unless a business chooses cloud-based ERP.
A successful ERP deployment is not an easy task. Many companies struggle to find a balance between real-time and batch integration, as well as external and internal ERP systems. Enterprise resource planning is a complex challenge, and there are many points to consider before launching a new strategy.
According to Panorama Consulting's 2019 ERP Report, the average budget attributed to an ERP system implementation is approximately $1.25 million. Of the organizations surveyed that completed an implementation, more than 58% had an average implementation timeline of 14.1 months. Traditionally, ERP implementation failures can occur when managers don’t consider:
- How a successful ERP implementation will improve day-to-day business processes.
- Full ERP implementation costs from beginning to end.
- The time it will take to complete a successful ERP implementation.
Eric Kimberling of Panorama Consulting is an independent ERP systems expert with over 20 years' experience advising clients around the world. He feels that ERP solutions have become easier to implement over the years.
"You don't want to treat ERP as a small project. You want to make sure you have a dedicated focus on the people that are addressing the organizational change management aspects," he says. "People always think end-user training when they think of organizational change, but there's so much more that needs to happen before the end-user training in order for that to be successful."
What are the steps in a successful ERP implementation process?
The first step in how to plan an ERP implementation should involve clearly defining the strategies you intend to use. It may be helpful to ask the following questions:
- What inefficiencies in your current business processes are you looking to improve?
- Which process do you want to mitigate against?
- How can ERP software address these needs or wants?
- What is your budget for ERP integration?
- What is your timeline?
- Have you allowed for contingencies?
- Have you communicated ERP implementation phases internally?
If you’re considering switching from one ERP system to another, it's essential to address whether the alternative software’s value outweighs the time and cost of an ERP migration. Before transferring your data and overhauling a number of established processes, ensure that the ERP software has the functionality to help you streamline management tasks even further.