10 top tips for a successful ERP implementation
At Neuways, we have decades of experience with ERP systems. We have implemented business systems for companies throughout a variety of different industries across the country. As a result, we are well-placed to help guide those interested in ERP and help them decide if an ERP journey is truly for them, or not.
ERP systems are wonderful things when they come together. They can completely transform a business and vastly improve the productivity potential of its employees, through automation and simplifying existing processes. It is no wonder, then, that the worldwide ERP software market each year is worth more than £18bn and is growing between 10-20% every year (Learn Hub).
If you’re considering an ERP implementation, here are Neuways Managing Director Martin Roberts’s top ten tips for a successful ERP implementation:
- Rationalise your project activities – ERP is a huge project in itself – it’s essentially like trying to change the engines on a Boeing 747 whilst in flight! It’s crucial to ensure that your business is not juggling too many different tasks and projects at the same time.
- Make sure you’ve got your best people on the project that really understand your business and it’s existing processes. You may worry that you’ll dilute their effectiveness for their ‘day job’ in the present, but it is extremely necessary for the experts in your business processes to be involved in the design of your new business system. It will also help with the bedding in of the new system, as more people involved on the project means more expertise spread throughout the business.
- Recognise the potential complexities involved in the interfacing of your new ERP system to legacy e-commerce websites. It’s usually best to migrate to a tightly integrated offering than trying to re-write integrations that are different to what you already have in place.
- Work with a partner that has accomplished consultants with broad experience of different types of businesses and multiple implementations under their belt. Good consultants can bring the best from their own experiences within these many different industries that can ultimately benefit you and your business. Battle hardened ERP consultants will appreciate the complexity of your implementation and help you avoid common pitfalls.
- Scope, scope, scope! Fix the scope of your project at its inception and understand that if you change this in any way, you will impact the duration and cost of the project – a simple change in scope could delay the go-live date of your ERP system.
- Recognise that on day one of the new ERP system, everybody in your business goes from being an expert in how they use your previous system to a novice in the new one! To avoid any kind of trouble with the new business system, communication, involvement and training are key to acceptance and the gaining of confidence in the new system among the employees of your business.
- Now it’s time to be honest: are you really as efficient as you believe? How about your processes – are they as good as you think they are? Honesty when implementing a new ERP system is essential to achieving the best system you could hope for. This is the time to upgrade and improve upon your processes, so take the time to review your processes and be honest.
- Key data – what reports do you need to run your business and what are the key metrics involved? Be sure that there is continuity within the reporting of these metrics so you don’t lose sight of the critical data that feeds into your company’s decision making. It is particularly important to record these during the first few key months after the go-live date.
- Customer facing documents are more time consuming and difficult to get right than you imagine. You’ll find the standard output of invoices and statements are not right for your business – put enough time aside to ensure you get these right and don’t leave them until the last moment.
- Mapping out a plan for any future enhancements that your business would like to be included within your ERP system, but aren’t essential for the initial implementation, is important. Post ERP implementation, this wish list can help guide the subsequent pathway for your business system to follow. Items on the list are considered as enhancements, as and when the time and budget required to implement them become available.
Of course, there are many more expert tips we can provide and discuss with you, to ensure that your business is as knowledgeable and ready for a potential new business system as possible.
Contact Neuways by calling 01283 753 333 or email email@example.com to begin exploring your ERP options today.