Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) solutions are set of powerful business applications, which make business processes more efficient for any process manufacturer, thereby achieving more fruitful business outcomes. In order to draw over-the-top ERP benefits, more and more formula/recipe based manufacturers are opting to be up and functional on manufacturing ERP solutions. The process of ERP implementation is a relatively time-consuming effort and demands significant capital investment. Therefore, one must have a lot of patience and commitment till the end.
However, ERP implementation comes along with its own set of cons; delays and unexpected expenses being the most common ones. According to one of the recent annual reports by the Panorama Consulting Service, 54 percent of ERP software implementations take longer than expected and 56 percent of those ERP implementations exceed budgeted costs. Nearly 50 percent of implementation projects fail to deliver the expected results; consequently, half of the big-budget projects end up as failures.
Both vendors as well as business owners should demonstrate extreme caution because the success of the implementation highly dependent on their respective individual roles throughout the journey of ERP implementation. With some handy and useful best practices, both the parties can avoid their fair share of potential pitfalls. Read on to know the top ten best practices for fast, clean and rewarding ERP implementation for your organization:
1. Always ensure you have the management’s backing- The decision always comes from the top. So it’s important that the top management is convinced about its acquisition and ensures that all the required resources plus support is unwavering and everlasting.
2. Define the problems to drive through solutions- Closely analyze the loopholes and pain points of the work arena and define deliverables and goals you want to achieve. Then develop an organizational strategy based around accomplishing those objectives. Since there is no substitute for planning, you must have a blue print ready in your kitty before moving ahead with the major change.
3. Select the right vendor and set a realistic budget- There is no such thing like good or bad solution vendor. Every solution is unique and upright in its own light. The one who relates truly to your business processes is the best vendor for you. Further, select the suitable solution such as on-premise or on-cloud, based on the need and size of the business model. Then comes the estimation of total expenditure incurred, which should be in accordance with the customization you demanded for. Make sure that you obtain the best module set at best possible price.
4. Never let the expectations exceed practicality- Accept that no solution is tailor fit. Performance gaps are bound to occur as no solution maps perfectly to your expectations. Such gaps are filled with the help of customization, hence keep room for modifications, deviations and delays. By staying practical and alert, you just diminish the intensity. Be prepared to expect the unexpected.
5. Keep an eye on technological advancements- With the advent of technology, ERP arena is introduced to a new trend every year. Artificial Intelligence, Big Data Analysis, Internet of Things (IoT), and cloud are the hot favorite of every ERP customer. Be vigilant about your prerequisites and ask your vendor to accommodate it in the plan. This can further enhance the performance of your ERP and enable faster execution of your processes.
6. Don’t jump start, instead start small and then scale up- Avoid running the rat race blindly and jump into the bandwagon for you will only land into trouble. Instead, begin the implementation process slow yet steady. Give the implementation sufficient amount of time and flexibility to transfer your silos of data to the new system. Keep discussions with your consultant open at all stages so that you can ensure that their approach and strategies are as per your business process. This way any deviations can be instantly found and can be worked upon then and there; saving you from the load of reverting the changes and re-doing them.
7. Look for the appropriate user interface- An ERP solution is useful only when your staff is comfortable using the interface. The employees keep rolling always, therefore the interface should be easy to understand and convenient to operate. It should offer equal ease of operation to both an expert as well as beginner.
8. Define periodic performance reviews- When the staff and implementation team collaborate, the performance evaluation of team as well as an individual becomes a necessity. The reviews must be based on the caliber and respective goals and must be observed periodically so as to regulate the project development. With the help of regular monitoring, the delays can not only be identified but covered up by obtaining expert opinion.
9. Education & training is crucial for success- If you wish to achieve the most out of your investment, then invest considerably in terms of time and money on training and educating the staff. Training not only provides the platform to test the solution during the dry run, but also helps in managing the change resistance within the organization from head to toe in the organizational hierarchy.
10. Ensure handover follows every protocol and excellent post implementation support- Detailed information about absolutely everything should be demanded by the implantation experts, which will help you to smoothly run the operations in their absence. Make sure that data transfer is managed by professionals and executed to full capacity along with having a reliable backup. There might be a possibility of facing dead ends and hitches during routine operations soon after your new ERP system is up and running. A solid, fast and dependable support should be guaranteed by the vendor so that your business operation runs nonstop.
An ERP implementation always pays for its due investment and can transform your business, only if the implementation is done correctly and best practices are followed before, during and after the entire process of implementation. Delays, costly setbacks and untimely failures can be easily avoided by developing a clear organizational implementation strategy and following it religiously. For more information on best implementation services, visit www.batchmaster.co.in
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