ERP Project Management

ERP project management is key to a successful enterprise software implementation. Inadequate project management has played a major role in failed implementations. A qualified, dedicated project manager is rule number one for a successful ERP implementation.

ERP Project Management

Embarking on an enterprise resource planning (ERP) implementation project can be an exciting task. But with numerous moving parts involved, it’s easy for things to quickly spiral out of control. That’s where an ERP project manager steps in, ensuring smooth sailing throughout the entire process.

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What is the role of the project management office in an ERP implementation?

For a major undertaking like an ERP implementation, Ultra recommends the establishment of a project management office (PMO). The PMO should be staffed with experienced ERP project managers since this role requires full-time engagement. A PMO can include multiple team members as long as responsibilities are clearly defined.

While the PMO is responsible to manage the project, allocate resources, assign tasks and track progress through the implementation plan, they report directly to an executive steering committee. The project team—consisting of members from both vendor and client—reports to the PMO. The team members are responsible for completing their tasks according to the detailed implementation plan.

The following are characteristics of a good ERP implementation project manager:

  • Experienced with managing ERP projects
  • Respected at the organization
  • Leads well
  • Demands satisfactory performance from the team, both client and vendor
  • Understands the entire range of processes

Ultra Consultants often assists our clients by providing experienced leaders who can execute the PMO duties. Our dedicated consultants can make all the difference in guiding your company through a successful ERP implementation that meets your goals and sets the stage for success.

1. Navigating Complexity:
An ERP implementation is a complex undertaking that involves integrating various systems, streamlining processes and managing data migration to the new ERP system’s centralized platform. A project manager serves to help organizations navigate this intricate web of tasks. Their expertise in project planning, risk management and resource coordination allows for a seamless execution of the project, reducing the potential for costly errors and delays.

2. Effective Communication:
Communication is the cornerstone of any successful implementation project. A project manager acts as the central point of contact, ensuring that everyone involved, from stakeholders to team members, is on the same page. They facilitate regular meetings, provide updates and address concerns promptly. 

By fostering open lines of communication, an ERP project manager creates an environment where collaboration thrives, leading to better decision-making and smoother project progress.

3. Managing Stakeholders Expectations:
An ERP software implementation project involves multiple stakeholders, each with their own set of expectations and objectives. Balancing these competing interests can be challenging, but a skilled project manager excels in this area. They engage with stakeholders, understand their requirements and align project goals accordingly. 

By managing expectations effectively, a project manager ensures that the project remains on track, delivering the desired outcomes.

4. Mitigating Risks:
Every project faces risks, and an ERP implementation is no exception. From technical glitches to budget overruns, a wide range of potential pitfalls can disrupt the project. A project manager’s role extends beyond just identifying risks; they also develop strategies to mitigate them. 

By proactively assessing risks, creating contingency plans and monitoring progress, a project manager minimizes the impact of unforeseen obstacles and cost overruns, keeping the project timeline schedule and within budget.

5. Quality Assurance:
Quality assurance is paramount when it comes to ERP software implementation. A project manager plays a crucial role in ensuring that the implemented system meets the organization’s requirements and performance standards. They can oversee rigorous testing, manage user acceptance and monitor system performance post-implementation. 

By focusing on quality throughout the project lifecycle, a project manager helps ensure that the ERP system delivers the expected benefits and drives business growth.

The Project Management Office (PMO)

All of our full-time consultants at Ultra are skilled, experienced project managers. We are ready to deploy anywhere in North America to assist our clients in any of the following capacities:

erp warehouse software

Project Manager

In this position, Ultra will manage your internal team and the ERP software vendors to achieve an on-time, on-budget ERP implementation. Ultra Consultants’ expert project manager who is assigned to your project will be on-site 100% of the time. Our clients request this service when they do not have an experienced enterprise-level project manager within their company who can handle this role.

Understanding ERP Inventory Management

Project Manager Assistant

One of Ultra’s experienced consultants or a technology partner can fill the position of ERP Project Manager Assistant, especially if you will be utilizing one of your internal team members as the primary project manager. This person assists your project manager with the enterprise project management duties. 

This consultant is typically on site one to three days per week, with time requirements varying based on how much time your internal project manager can devote to the project. Our clients request this service when they have an internal manager, but the individual cannot devote 100% of their time and energy to the project, therefore needing an experienced assistant.

ERP Requirements Planning

Business Team Leader

Additionally, one of Ultra’s expert consultants can fill the position of business team leader. Each ERP project requires several functional team leaders, focusing on various business functions, such as a financial team leader. This individual leads your staff through the financial performance of the ERP implementation process. 

This functional area-specific consultant from Ultra will be on site three to four days per week. Clients request this service when they do not have an individual that has the time or the ability to lead a functional team.

erp consulting company

Steering Committee Advisor

In this role, an expert from Ultra Consultants provides advice and counsel to the ERP project steering committee and ERP project team throughout the process. The Ultra consultant or vendor partner will be on site two to four days per month. Clients request this service when they have a qualified ERP project manager on staff yet want to infuse Ultra’s experience and knowledge into the ERP system implementation.

ERP Implementation by Ultra Consultants

Ultra’s ERP Project Management Services

An ERP solution helps your business streamline and integrate key business functions in areas such as supply chain management, accounting, human resources, customer relationship management and inventory control. To ensure successful ERP implementation, robust ERP project management becomes crucial. Ultra Consultants’ team of experts combines forces with your team, your vendor and your implementation partner to drive project success.

The following make up Ultra’s project management services:

  • Project planning
  • Organizing roles and responsibilities
  • Scheduling
  • Reporting requirements
  • ERP data conversion plans
  • Communication and reporting
  • Weekly meeting management
  • Issues log
  • Project budget
  • Project reports
  • Steering committee meetings
  • Project monitoring
  • Issue resolution
  • Budget
  • Vendor performance
  • Core team performance

Ultra’s ERP project management services do not displace the ERP vendor project manager, nor does the vendor project manager displace the need for an expert project manager from Ultra Consultants (or your own project manager). Ultra’s services are designed to support your needs and responsibilities throughout the project.

How a Client-Side Project Manager Helps With Updating an ERP System

Collaboration between the ERP project manager and the client-side project manager is crucial for enabling robust cost management, evaluating ongoing project performance and ensuring the appropriate resource management across your team during major enterprise software implementation initiatives. The following are some of the ways a client-side project manager plays a crucial role in an ERP project implementation. 

1. Managing the Project

A client-side project manager is an integral part of any organization that is planning to update their ERP system. This expert is responsible for managing the entire project, from inception to completion. This includes: 

  • Creating a detailed ERP project plan
  • Defining project goals and objectives
  • Identifying the resources required for successful implementation

The project manager ensures that the project stays on track, monitors progress and addresses any issues or challenges that may arise during the update process.

2. Advocacy and Coordination

A client-side project manager serves as a strong advocate for your interests throughout the ERP system update. They actively engage with the ERP vendor and implementation partner, ensuring that each delivers the necessary services and meets your requirements. The project manager represents your organization’s voice and ensures that your needs and expectations are communicated effectively. 

By coordinating the efforts of all stakeholders involved, the project manager ensures that everyone is working towards a common goal and that the project stays on schedule.

3. Task Orientation

One of the key strengths of a client-side project manager is their exceptional organizational skills. They ensure that assigned tasks are completed by the relevant individuals and monitor progress to ensure that everyone remains focused, with all the necessary tools and resources to complete their tasks on time. 

The project manager follows up with project team members, provides guidance and support when needed and ensures that the project progresses smoothly. By keeping a close eye on task completion, the project manager minimizes delays and ensures that the project stays on schedule.

4. Troubleshooting and Communication

Identifying obstacles or delays in the update process is another important responsibility of the client-side project manager. They investigate the root causes of these issues and work towards resolving them promptly. The project manager facilitates effective communication among the vendor, client and implementation partner by orchestrating collaborative discussions and conference calls. 

Clear and timely communication is essential for a successful ERP system update, and the project manager plays a vital role in ensuring that all parties are on the same page and working towards a common goal.

5. Task Progression

Maintaining steady momentum throughout the update process is crucial for a timely completion. The client-side project manager ensures that tasks are prioritized and completed on time and that there is an efficient flow from one task to the next. They have a keen eye for detail and ensure that no task is overlooked or under-prioritized. 

By closely monitoring task progression, the project manager keeps the project on track and minimizes any potential bottlenecks.

6. Comprehensive Organization

Being highly organized is a fundamental characteristic of a capable client-side project manager. They meticulously track and manage every aspect of the ERP update, from the initial plan to monitoring progress and documenting any changes or issues that arise. 

The project manager maintains detailed records, tracks project costs and ensures that all necessary documentation is in order. This level of organization allows for better decision-making, reduces the risk of errors and ensures that the project runs smoothly and on budget from start to finish.

7. Project Completion

The ultimate aim of a client-side project manager is to ensure the successful project outcomes of the ERP system update. They are dedicated to achieving a fully implemented system that meets the client’s requirements. The project manager understands that challenges and obstacles may arise during the process, but they apply every effort to overcome them. 

The expert project manager works closely with the vendor and implementation partner, addressing any issues that arise promptly and ensuring that the project stays on track. The project manager’s commitment to project completion is unwavering, and they will go above and beyond to ensure a successful outcome.

software selection ebook whitepaper ultra consultants

Software selection and implementation processes often present challenges of their own. To steer you around trouble and help you drive success, Ultra’s experts compiled a list of pain points and solutions to be aware of as you embark on this journey.

software selection ebook whitepaper ultra consultants

Software selection and implementation processes often present challenges of their own. To steer you around trouble and help you drive success, Ultra’s experts compiled a list of pain points and solutions to be aware of as you embark on this journey.


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