In this 7-part series we will present ideas and solutions to help build a business case for a new ERP in just 7 steps. In this fifth step we will take a look at some of the Implementation Risk challenges to getting support for your ERP project.
Step 5: The Implementation Approach
Here in Step 5 of our ‘Making a Business Case for a New ERP’ series we are going to take a look at ‘The Implementation Approach.’ Understanding the implementation approach, describe it the best you can to enhance sponsor confidence.
Getting executive sponsorship is paramount in implementing a new ERP solution and all the new processes and training that accompany the purchase. In order to gain sponsor confidence you will need to understand the vendor implementation process and approach. Look into the ERP vendor’s implementation and services team or partners to help understand everything involved in the integration process.
Picking the ERP Implementation process that is best for your company and product will also help insure a sponsor sign-off. Most companies boast outrageous track records or success when it comes to ERP implementation, so tread lightly when you are doing your research, ask for references, and find out if there is a local company running the ERP solution and go visit to see how the ERP is working and research the implementation process focusing on the failures and successes.
Research the skills and product knowledge of the vendor delivering the ERP to your company, business or industry; check with past customers to see how smoothly the implementation did (or did not) go. Make sure your vendor has a lengthy track record as a successful service provider. Consider using and implementing methodology that standardize the software implementation by laying out all of the steps that must happen in order to have the implementation considered successful. Finally, take a look at how well the ERP vendor documents their implementation process, project milestones and success deliverables. Vendors without clear cut processes, may not be able walk the walk, and would warrant more research and recommendation before moving forward.
After doing research and due diligence into the ERP solution and implementation vendor that is the best choice for your company, you should have enough solid data to take to your executive sponsor to review and approve which vendor will be the solution provider of choice for your ERP solution. If one of the vendors on your short-list is unable to provide you with a step by step approach and master schedule, you will probably want to avoid moving forward with them, you have to think about the ever expanding costs of an ERP implementation that exceeds schedule and budget.
Make sure to check back next week for Step 6: Return on Investment Measurements
Step 6: Return on Investment Measurements
Step 7: Recommend the Preferred Solution