An enterprise resource planning (ERP) software binds together various business processes across a company. The increasing demand for ERP software is an indication of the key role an ERP system plays in running a business.
According to a report published by Market Research Engines, the ERP market is set to surpass the $49.5 billion mark by 2025 . Over the past few years, businesses of all shapes and sizes have implemented an ERP strategy to streamline their operations.
But why has the adoption of ERP systems taken off in recent years?
In this article, we will cover the best ERP practices for a successful implementation of an ERP. You can also take a look at the hottest ERP trends in 2021 to get a better idea of where the ERP market is heading.
Since organizations are increasingly turning to data to improve their business operations, investments toward enterprise technology have witnessed growth. Does your company use an ERP system or on the verge of implementing one?
Regardless of where you are in that journey, stakeholders are bound to have some concerns pertaining to the impact of an ERP system on their business. Right from creating organizational disruptions to project delays, these concerns discourage decision-makers from investing in an ERP software solution.
However, the good news is that if you adopt the best practices for ERP implementation, you will start noticing its benefits and return on investment (ROI).
Here are some of the best ERP practices to ensure your ERP deployment is successful.
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1. Build the right project team
The first step is to ensure that you build a strong project team to ensure your ERP implementation is successful. Typically, these individuals have a clear understanding of different business processes and a good rapport with their colleagues and the management team.
In addition, your team should also have a project manager and an executive sponsor who can tweak business priorities as and when required. This team should be focused on defining top-level goals, KPIs, and requirements to ensure that the project is on track.
Building the right team is one of the best ERP practices you can adopt, so it is crucial that you do not overlook it.
2. Define KPIs
It is important that your team understands what you are trying to achieve by investing in an ERP system. Chalk down your requirements and ensure that they are tied with your business goals. You should also have a clear understanding of how you can optimize your business processes with an ERP. Once you understand your needs, determine the key performance indicators (KPIs) that allow you to evaluate the success of your ERP implementation.
3. Choose the right ERP vendor
It is very important to choose the right ERP vendor for successful implementation. Select an ERP partner that offers a product with all the important features you require to fulfill your business goals.
You should research, read product reviews, and also try to get in touch with existing customers that are using a particular product. Try to understand the challenges they are facing and how the product will support your business.
Lastly, you need to find out whether your ERP provider offers training and support after the software is implemented.
4. Collect end-user feedback regularly
Collect feedback from end-users throughout the implementation process for seamless deployment. This step will help you determine how your employees are interacting with the system, especially in the initial stages.
After an ERP software is live, feedback from end-users will help you recognize their problems and also give ideas for improvement.
5. Filter your data
With so much data at your disposal, how do you assess how clean your data is? It is a good practice to determine the accuracy of your data right at the beginning. You should ensure that your master data is accurate as it impacts all your other ERP implementations.
Before you initiate data migration, it is important to define consistent data formats and definitions. This will ensure that your data practices are consistent throughout.
6. Training and support
You should opt for an ERP vendor that offers training and support to all employees based on their roles. Besides, it is always advisable to set up an ongoing training program for new employees. After the ERP is implemented, it is critical that there is proper support to address any issues your employees are facing.
The success of your projects primarily depends on understanding the motive behind the ERP implementation. Right from the CEO to the end-user, everyone should be in sync. Your employees should be aware of why ERP software is being implemented and the benefits that come with it.
A collaborative approach coupled with clear communication is the building block of developing mutual understanding. Even the top-level management should be involved to send a clear message pertaining to the importance of the project.
Implementing ERP software may also impact supply chain partners, customers, and business partners. This is why it is a good idea to keep them in the loop during the implementation.
8. Project management
You should also consider establishing an ERP implementation process, you should keep track of the smallest of changes. This is where a program management office (PMO) steps in. The main purpose of the CMO is to ensure that the implementation is smooth and effective.
These tasks may include addressing incoming issues, keeping track of all responses, and making sure that there are no escalations.
Even though you implement the most effective ERP practices, it is important to choose the most suitable ERP tool for your organization. Cloud-based ERP systems are becoming increasingly popular among small and medium-sized businesses due to their ease of implementation and lower costs. You can also read more about the best cloud model for your organization.
However, whatever ERP software you choose, adopting these ERP practices can ensure a successful implementation.
There is no doubt that implementing ERP software is not smooth sailing at all times. It comes with its fair share of challenges and ups and downs. The key is to create a sound strategy and follow all the key steps diligently.
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