ERP implementation is a complex process involving both people and technology and affecting almost every facet of the company. However, in spite of the challenges involved, it marks an extremely rewarding transformation, which explains why more and more businesses and companies have adopted it. By giving attention to certain details, this critical project can be implemented smoothly.
Choosing the right ERP
The first step is to identify the type of ERP package that best suits your particular business needs. There are different packages for different types of industries and it is even possible to obtain a customized version if necessary. Having made the choice, make sure that you have the service of an experienced professional who can advise and guide you through the complex process of implementation. Relying on a do-it-yourself method can result in loss of both time and money. The implementation of an erp software package is not a mere change in software; it could be a complete business transformation and hence careful planning is required at the top management level itself.
For the successful implementation of an ERP, the formation of a team including employees from different departments, chosen with an eye to competence and knowledge rather than position, is essential.
Though ERP is defined as a kind of all-inclusive software solution, it is advisable to identify the key areas and objectives that made this implementation a necessity. Which processes and procedures are in need of automation urgently? Are there areas requiring updating? Examining the current business processes helps the team to set clear objectives. The ERP systems are so massive that it is possible to choose the functions you would like to implement. The ideal choice would be an all-encompassing implementation, but practical requirements can lead to specific choices that answer precise needs like reducing backlogs, improving on-time deliveries, boosting production yields etc.
Transition of the entire available data, though possible, may not be the best solution on account of the possible vast amount of outdated and irrelevant information existing in the current system. The necessary and relevant data must be collected and entered in logical sequences into the ERP database and later checked for accuracy.
The testing and development phases often go hand in hand with the project team switching between the two. The purpose of the testing is to ensure that the system functions as per the requirements and to adjust the configuration settings according to the observed outcomes or problems. It also ensures user proficiency.
A final evaluation is done based on the objectives set in the beginning.
While long term goals of ERP implementation like increased overall efficiency may not be immediately observable, there are other immediate improvements that can be noticed, such as in the areas of collaboration between departments, easier access to relevant data that aids in making prompt decisions etc.