4 ERP Support Strategies That Will Help Your ERP Project Run Smoothly
ERP projects take a long time and consume valuable resources. You and your organization hope that by investing these resources in your project, you will achieve a long term return on investment. Those resources are not exclusively financial, many businesses use a variety of ERP support strategies, from internal and external sources, to aid their overall ERP project and increase the likelihood of achieving a strong ROI.
1. Legacy Management
You have used Brand X ERP for years but have now outgrown it and are ready to move to a new and improved ERP. Is it more valuable to you to have your IT staff working on selecting and implementing the new ERP or to continue managing the old one? You cannot just drop Brand X; your business depends on the legacy system, today and the immediate future. One option is to hire the ERP support resources to manage Brand X for a limited period of time and free up your IT staff to look toward the future. Your legacy ERP has been around for years and people who can support it well are readily available.
2. Data Conversion Support
Data conversion is a very important component of the overall ERP implementation project, but don’t outsource the entire conversion step to external experts - knowledge of your business processes is essential. A good ERP support strategy for data conversion will involve the inclusion of prospective users of the system (process support for consultants) as well as technical support from analysts and programmers.
3. Change Management
Your staff will need to change their behaviors to accommodate the new ERP and, as is so often the case, resistance to change will be rife. We all resist change to some degree – we all are human, after all. Your management may be experts at engineering, sales and finance but their change management skills may leave a lot to be desired. Find a consultant who is an expert in the psychological areas of change management. The transition to the new ERP will be faster and smoother, your employees will be happier and more efficient.
4. ERP Training
Training is another aspect of ERP support that might be better managed by instructional experts. Look for people who know how to use the best ERP training methods and have access to the best training resources. An ERP support strategy built around skilled training staff will pay off in the short term, but you will also have resources to use for ongoing training as you hire new or replacement staff.
You might find support consultants that offer all these services. You might choose to use different consultants or complement these external resources with your own internal project team. Any of these methods can work. The important thing is to develop an ERP support strategy that provides a targetted service for your employees with in-depth knowledge of the business.
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