After taking heed of the warning signs that your current financial management software is hurting your business, you finally decided to migrate to a new system. Good on you for making the right decision! Now it’s time to ensure that you implement your new enterprise resource planning (ERP) software successfully.
IT projects, in general, aren’t always smooth sailing. Businesses experience a few challenges along the way from operational disruptions, project objectives not being met to budget overruns. But it doesn’t have to be this way when you’ve done your homework to prevent it.
With our years of experience providing ERP implementation services for our clients, we’re sharing with you some of the secrets to success when implementing a new ERP system.
#1 Ensure a good change management strategy.
The success of any IT project is largely determined by how much your users have adopted it. It is in this reason that change management will play a critical role in the success of your ERP implementation. A good change management strategy will avoid mass confusion, prevent resistance from your users and help them adapt to the new system quickly. Create various ways to let your people cope up with change. You can provide group training sessions, on-demand instructional videos and assigning a go-to person for any questions that they may have about the new process or technology.
#2 Involve your users at the onset.
Your users are your subject matter experts, so it is an excellent strategy to involve them right from the start and seek their feedback. Make sure to engage your users from initial scoping through to user acceptance training (UAT) to be able to capture what they need to make the new system work for them. After all, you’re investing in a new ERP to make their lives easier and your business operations to run smoother.
#3 Resist customizing everything in your system.
ERP systems, especially the cloud-based ones, have been designed and built that way with standard business practices, methods and processes in mind. While it is flexible and configurable to a certain extent, it may not address 100% of all your financial, operational management or reporting needs. There are third party solution add-ons that you can purchase, instead of completely customizing your requirement. This is often a lot cheaper and quicker to deploy than to develop from the ground up.
#4 Get a maintenance agreement with your vendor.
Can your IT staff handle the new ERP platform? Do they have in-depth skills and knowledge to maintain your new ERP system? Are they technically capable of supporting your users in the long term? Not too confident with your answers to these questions? We suggest you get a maintenance agreement with your vendor to ensure you have proactive support in place for your users.
#5 Opt for the technology that aligns with your long-term IT strategy.
Most ERP systems are flexible enough to give you a choice between an on-premise, cloud or hybrid type of deployment. Weigh in on what makes more sense for your current business operations. Cloud-based ERPs free up your business from additional hardware investment or annual software maintenance; allows you to scale quickly depending on your current business demands; and uses the most advanced and tightly secured cloud platform. On-premise ERPs are mostly preferred by organizations that cannot do without a lot of customizations in their system. Hybrid deployments will provide you with the flexibility of both. Whatever you choose, it should align with your long-term IT infrastructure strategy.
#6 Choose the right vendor.
Having a credible and experienced IT partner that truly understands your business objectives and how to make that happen will be crucial in the success of your project. Consider vendors that have the technical expertise, customer references, industry experience, and post-production support services in place. Partner with vendors that can bring the most value to your IT project beyond just cost savings. We have more tips for you here on the questions that you need to ask about the solution your vendor is proposing.
Need assistance with migrating to a new ERP?
We have been helping businesses transition to a robust and scalable ERP software with Microsoft Dynamics Business Central and have made it affordable for companies to do so. If you need ERP specialists to provide you with further guidance on your project, please contact us here, and we’ll be in touch.