Implementing a new ERP system is one of the biggest and most challenging projects your business will take on. It touches every aspect of your operation and will play a huge part in how employees do their job on a day-to-day basis. It’s a massive undertaking.
But there’s a reason so many businesses take on such a time consuming and demanding project - and that’s the end reward. When implemented correctly, with adequate planning, testing, and training, ERP can offer the functionality needed to drive growth and reach business milestones.
So, to help you get the most from your technology, here are 5 secrets to a successful ERP implementation.
1. Manage users, not just your ERP
In most cases, upgrading your technology is relatively straight forward in comparison to managing the people that will be interacting with it. Employees are used to working with the existing system and are set into their routines with current processes.
Despite the high chance of time-consuming workarounds required to bypass system limitations, humans are generally resistant to change. Meaning motivation towards adopting a new system could pose a challenge.
Some people may be intimidated by the unfamiliarity, it’s to be expected. But with the right action plan, training, clear communication, and clearly defined benefits, your team will embrace the system and quickly notice the upgrade.
2. Plan for change and make a real difference
Given the nature of ERP implementations, it’s one of the few opportunities your business gets to rebuild long lasting (and likely out of date) processes to better align them with future business requirements.
Whilst planning for change is positive, you want to make sure that both old and new processes are accounted for during the ERP implementation. The last thing you want is for a process to be unexpectedly broken.
Appoint a leader to oversee any changes, set milestones, and create documentation of new processes along the way. This will help when it comes to ensuring both new and existing users are up to date with the latest way of working.
Above all, take the time to handle everything carefully. If you plan in advance and understand what needs revising beforehand, you’ll find the implementation goes a whole lot smoother.
3. Think about timing
When choosing a new ERP system, you’ll want to implement it with plenty of time to get the team adjusted and fluent in using it. The best time to roll out a new ERP is during the low season for fewer chances of disruption. This will vary depending on the industry you operate in.
For instance, Retail’s low period starts just after “return season” has finished, around late January.
So, time your ERP project as best you can and be ready to meet consumer demands in plenty of time. Otherwise, you risk angry customers, complaints, and refunds.
4. Seek feedback from employees
It’s important to remember that ERP training is not a one-way affair. As staff members become familiar with the system and fully aware of their job duties, they can provide valuable feedback on utilising the system for maximum efficiency.
More often than not, these suggestions can be very useful in improving the quality of the ERP implementation. Don’t forget about it.
5. Partner with a specialist that knows your industry
Alongside ERP specific knowledge, many businesses benefit hugely from consulting with a partner that has experience supporting similar businesses.
A partner with expertise in manufacturing will understand the common challenges faced in the sector to help streamline the implementation process, reduce costs, and increase margins.
Experience lays the foundation for a successful implementation. So instead of being a guinea pig, benefit from other’s mistakes and shield yourself from unnecessary risks.
Ensure a successful ERP implementation with Nolan Business Solutions
At Nolan Business Solutions, we’re committed to providing long term ERP solutions tailored to our customers’ needs. We’re the experts in providing NetSuite and Microsoft Dynamics solutions that help businesses looking to grow.
Our team of accredited ERP experts will develop, deploy and support your implementation from beginning to end, and after. So, if you’re looking to start your ERP implementation journey, we’d love to support you. Contact our team today for more information.