Implementing an ERP System - 10 Things to Consider First
Congratulations! You have decided to implement a new ERP system and now you’re wondering:
“Where do I begin? How can I make sure we are successful? Who should I get involved? How can I do this and still keep our business moving forward while minimizing disruption?”
In this article, I will try to help answer these questions and more. Based on extensive experience and research, following is a list of 10 important things you and your organization should consider BEFORE you implement a new ERP system. Investing time up front to consider each point and determining how to incorporate them into your plan, should help you and your organization to stay focused and ensure a smoother and successful implementation.
1. What do you hope to achieve with a new system?
An ERP system is a big investment for an organization, both financially and in resource time. You should be thinking about the big picture and the future of your organization. You don’t want to choose a system and implement, only to realize in a year it’s not the right one. You should be thinking about things like end-user functionality, out of the box configuration versus customization. How it will affect your customers, suppliers, contractors etc. How and what will this system help your organization to achieve in the coming months, years etc. Can the system grow with your organization, so you don’t have to implement a new system in a few years?
2. Secure Buy-In
It is critical to ensure everyone is on board or at least understands why you are undertaking such an initiative. Clearly articulate the benefits anticipated to the team and the organization. If you obtain buy-in from the highest levels that a new system is required, then adoption by subsequent levels should be easier. Top down support and communication is key. If you want stakeholders to adopt change it must be supported and mandated from the top. Fellow executives can be your biggest champions and cheerleaders.
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