ERP - Implementation Goals
Thursday, August 01, 2013
Many organisations struggle to define what they are trying to achieve with their ERP system! A major problem is the lack of measurable goals and objectives when embarking on an ERP project.
Many CEOs tell us that the objective is to up-grade the ERP system because their legacy systems are not up to the job anymore and are in danger of falling over. Whilst this may be a valid reason to upgrade or acquire an ERP system is does not define what the measurements are or focus the organisation on specific goals other than implement the system.
ERP can be simple or complex. If specific goals and objectives, beyond implement the system, are not defined a lot of money and resources can be spent on focussing on specifics of the system that has little or no relevance to what the company is trying to achieve. (If you don’t’ know where you are going any road will get you there but it may not be where you want to be!) Many ERP projects have floundered because of the lack of specific goals.
ERP systems have been deigned to cover a wide range of industries and organisations and what is typically purchased is a framework that needs to be configured to the requirements of the company. When the assumption is that the company has bought a solution, when in fact the company has bought a system that needs to be customised for the company’s requirements then downstream problems that are going to impact the ERP project. The lack of specific goals leads to confusion, focus on issues that do not add value to the organisation and a blow-out in costs and project timelines.
Successful organisations establish clearly what the objectives are specifically to each area of the business and set achievable outcome goals that each area of the business must achieve through the implementation of the technology.
This is supported by a comprehensive set of steps that starts with the initial acquisition rationale through to post-live running activities. (see 26 steps) The 26 steps in acquiring an ERP system and implementing it successfully is based on 30 years of experience with integrated systems and extensive analysis of why they fail. In fact we are so certain that every company that adopts the 26 steps will succeed that every organisation that we work with is given a “Money Back Guarantee” on our services if they follow the steps and it doesn’t work. It is a point worth noting: We have never been asked to give the money back!
Unfortunately the industry hype and ill-defined goals and objectives is undermining a technology that has so much potential that has been unrealised and will continue to be unrealised until a different approach is taken to get the benefits the technology offers.