One of the biggest nightmares of a company’s managers: an ERP project that completely fails. Yet you have much more control and influence on the success of the ERP implementation than you think. This is what you should pay attention to, to make your ERP project a success.
1. Know exactly what your goals are
What it all starts with are the objectives you want to achieve with the ERP project. Working more efficiently, helping customers more successfully, better performance and security? The better you can define WHY you start the ERP implementation, the greater the chance of success. Having clear objectives entails focus. And with that you all work towards the same goal.
2. Make sure the entire organization support the project
You cannot force an ERP implementation through the organization. When there is resistance to the project, for whatever reason, the implementation is doomed to fail. So, make sure that all employees in all departments understand very well how the ERP implementation will help them personally. Because it saves them time, simplifies processes, makes their work more pleasant or reduces frustration. Motivated employees are extremely important to the success of the project.
"If you do all this right, the last important lesson is to celebrate success."
3. Define the scope, planning and budget as accurately as possible
Put very clearly on paper what you are going to do, when, who will do it and what it will cost. And evaluate periodically how well you are sticking to that scope, schedule and budget. A clear plan makes your project easier. You can intervene immediately where things go wrong or threaten to go wrong. And you know exactly what you get for the investments you make, which prevents a lot of discussion.
4. Communicate openly and honestly, continuously
Communication is really a keyword in ERP implementations. Communication with the ERP partner, with your own team and with the rest of the organization. A close relationship with your ERP partner in which transparency is paramount is of crucial importance. For your key user, the ERP project is a special experience, something they often do for the first time and do in addition to their daily activities. Understand that. And towards the rest of the organization, it is important to inform them very well about the progression throughout the project.
5. Don't lean back after the go-live
When the port is in sight, the ship can still sink. The go-live should not be the moment to sit back and relax and to consider the project finished. It is important to immediately proceed with evaluations, optimizations and follow-up projects. Many ideas and wishes will not yet be included in the first phase of the project and you can initiate them in subsequent phases.
If you do all this right, the last important lesson is to celebrate success. During the project, reflect on the milestones achieved and be proud when you go live with the new system!