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:
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."
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:
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.
As with most business pursuits, your success depends on using a systematic approach.
Make sure the entire process is divided into ERP implementation steps, and each stage has specific timelines for completion. To guarantee a seamless application, decide who should lead an ERP implementation, and assign them to be responsible for ensuring all deadlines are met.
The ERP system integration process should be supported by documentation to minimize the chances of encountering delays. Such pre-worked documentation shared by the ERP provider ensures that, as a business, you can hit the ground running and hone in on new opportunities.
If your company is in the midst of or phasing into a structural reorganization, your ERP implementation plan must account for this. Business process reengineering (BPR) is an important factor in an ERP implementation because if department sizes or job functions change, your ERP strategy’s timelines and priorities can be affected. As ERP and BPR both aim to improve the efficiency of business processes, this creates a need for a multi-layered approach to change management.
Consider how the structure of your company will shift in the long-term and ensure your ERP system implementation plan is valid for when modifications take place.
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