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The Importance of an ERP Design Team
Coming to the conclusion that a company needs an enterprise resource planning solution in place isn’t easy. Many successful organizations may find it hard to readjust the way they operate based on the data generated by an ERP system. It’s not uncommon for those tasked with leading a business toward profitability to believe that en ERP platform isn’t a necessary component toward achieving this goal.
However, ERP software is designed to be a help, not a hindrance. The system is able to analyze all aspects of a business and deliver information to decision-makers that they may not have been aware of before. From there, strategies can be developed to help the organization become more efficient, which lends itself to improved customer satisfaction and therefore, better revenue generation.
Selecting an ERP system requires a fair amount of research to decide on the platform that will best meet the needs of the company. As such, it will be important for organizations to create an ERP design team that will outline all of the business areas that the system will need to assess. Here are some helpful best practices that those participating in this process can use to generate the most favorable outcomes:
- Align business processes with goals: Many organizations will likely want to see improvements in several aspects of the business. This could include increased sales volume, shortening lead and turnaround times and lowering overall operational costs. IT Toolbox wrote that members of the ERP design team should dissect each process and identify any issues that have a negative impact. By doing so, it will become easier to select an ERP platform that will help generate adequate data that can be used to create solutions.
- Be mobile: Many companies today have employees that are heavy users of tablets and smartphones. CIO Magazine wrote that members of an ERP design team may want to choose a solution that supports the integration of mobile devices. Doing so allows those staff members with access to the system a quick and easy way to get information or even make changes when necessary. Many ERP vendors are creating their platforms with mobile integration ability and companies that make the use of smartphones and tablets a standard part of the way they operate may want to consider software that offers mobile connectivity.
- Analyze the impact on the business: Most ERP implementations are lengthy processes that aren’t completed overnight. Therefore, The Manufacturer suggested that design teams need to assess the way the installation of an ERP platform will affect the business. Doing so will help determine which kind of implementation will be the best fit for the company. Some may come to the conclusion that an all-in-one or big bang approach is best. Others may want to take a more measured implementation plan and use a phased rollout technique.
- Create a change management plan: Whenever new technology is introduced into an organization, it can take a while for workers to get used to the change. This is especially true for individuals who have become accustomed to doing things a certain way. CIO wrote that having a strong change management strategy will ensure a successful ERP implementation. “Typical ERP projects facilitate massive change in organizations that can include changing of day to day job descriptions or eliminating job descriptions in total,” Matt Thompson, vice president of EstesGroup told CIO. ERP design teams should work together to address the training needs of those tasked with engaging with the platform daily. These individuals must also create a plan on how workers will be brought up to speed quickly and efficiently.