Nearly every size business can benefit from a flexible ERP solution that provides better control over core business areas, but putting that project together can be daunting. There is a lot of planning necessary for the processes of successful implementation, and sometimes it can be difficult to keep that in perspective.
To help you keep things on track, let’s review three areas to consider to see if your implementation plan will lead you to success: the project itself, measurable KPIs during and after implementation, and those benefits that are easy to know but hard to quantify.
1. Project-focused Observations
Depending on your status before a proposed ERP implementation, your initial focus could be on improving operations or trying to put out the fires that never seem to end.
No matter which camp you’re in, the first way to look at your ERP implementation plan is to see if it creates reasonable expectations for the specific work of the implementation plan itself. Walk through every step to make sure you have each process accounted for as well as the contact information of the person responsible.
Each major task needs to have:
- What will be accomplished
- Resources that are required for the tasks
- Key person and point of contact
- What you define as success in the immediate term
Evaluate this step based on completeness and detail.This is your short-term success evaluation.
2. The Hard-facts Measurables
The second mindset to have when reviewing your plan is one that is focused on fundamentals and real-world indicators. Think of things that can be easily quantified or allow you to adjust to problems in a quantifiable way.
Start with a solid timeline that will run the length of your project, with defined milestones from the task list you just made. Set measurable objectives related to these steps as well as the project overall, which can be reviewed every six months for the first two years.
We recommend creating a plan to measure steps that are on-time and ensure the project is on-budget, plus long-term goals for your overall ROI, utilization rates, conversion rates, profit margin projection goals and a positive change in win rate.
Think of this section as your planning for long-term success.
3. A Few Things Your Team Can “Feel”
The final viewpoint is the hardest to measure in a defined way, but it is often one of the easiest to test and see if it works. Does your ERP implementation plan allow teams to provide feedback on their goals and enable you to accomplish them?
These aren’t necessarily goals to “increase sales by 12%” — they can be — but they can also include broader goals like improving customer service, providing information for someone to do their job better or enhancing communication.
Evaluate your plan based on how well it brings stakeholders from across your company to the table to get their input and feedback throughout the implementation process. A jumping off point for the plan should be a set of guidelines on how to create an implementation team that is representative of your organization and gathers input right from the start.
Do you have any guidelines that have worked well for your organization? We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments section!