What does an ERP consultant do?
And is it worth the cost to hire a consultant?
A closer look at the numbers and how to choose a good ERP Consultant
The average budget for ERP per user is around $7,400 for a business with 500 employees over the course of a five-year period, or around $4 per user, per day.
Company's Savings Through Lifecycle of ERP When Using Ultra: $160,000.
Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software, the backbone of technology systems in most businesses, is considered indispensable by major manufacturers and distributors looking to complete digital transformations. However, most organizations have little to no experience with the rigors of ERP selection and implementation, and a poorly executed ERP Implementation can often lead to significant financial losses for a company. So, organizations reach out to expert consultants for help navigating the journey. So…
An ERP Consultant is an expert who assists organizations in:
Managing the ERP project
Revealing opportunities for BPI
Selecting an ERP system
Negotiating the contract
Implementing the software
Training the stakeholders
Evaluating the results
Ensuring value realization
What is An ERP Consultant? An ERP consultant helps companies select, implement and use ERP systems effectively.
Working alongside your company to understand your specific needs, an ERP consultant coaches you in available software and related technology solutions and then ensures that your chosen ERP system is configured to meet those needs. The consultant also coordinates training for key stakeholders on how to use the system, troubleshooting issues that arise by ensuring vendors deliver on contractual obligations. In short, an ERP consultant guides a company to get the best possible ERP system–a system that operates smoothly and efficiently to accomplish the goals of the organization.
What makes a great ERP Consultant? They save time, resources and costs.
SAVES TIME–because employees don't waste time trying to figure out next steps.
An internal project manager is typically inexperienced in company-wide initiatives, which puts the entire project at risk.With an experienced Project Manager at the helm, companies aren’t left in reactionary mode, letting vendors dictate the process and guessing at what process works best to evaluate vendors and custom solutions. A consultant with dozens of ERP projects under their belt knows the best path forward, knows the issues to watch for and which factors can accelerate the process when done correctly.
Experienced ERP consultants understand prioritization of human resources, including when it is best to involve upper management and when it isn’t necessary. This way, key members of the ERP selection team can focus more of their time on effectively running the business and less on wasted hours where their involvement isn’t critical.
SAVES COSTS– because an ERP consultant manages negotiations and contract issues.
Regardless of a company’s strength in purchase negotiations, having an expert team of negotiators who deeply understand the ERP landscape is one of the primary areas where money is saved in ERP projects. Experienced ERP consultants know every option, add-on, and customization available for your particular vertical and will know how to best build in scalable flexibility without additional costs and penalties. Many ERP contracts can be structured to allow for growth by adding authorized users as needed and the ability to turn on additional functionality when the company grows into the need. By limiting up-front costs and customization expenses, a good ERP consultant ensures cash-flow is retained and better ROI is achieved.
UNDERSTANDS CHANGE MANAGEMENT–because change is tough for any person, any organization, no matter the size or scope of the project.
Change management is not just a phase. Instead, change management must be woven into the fabric of methodology and built into the project plan. That is why we at Ultra always include a robust change management strategy as part of any ERP journey. Our experts have found that the ERP selection process and the Implementation of enterprise software fares better when key stakeholders have been guided throughout the process. Being mindful of change management techniques and best practices, such as executive buy-in, phased adoption, and focus groups leads to better outcomes and reduced resistance. (See Ultra’s white paper on Change Management)
MITIGATES POTENTIAL ISSUES–because experience says that issues will arise.
A good ERP consultant understands that nothing is guaranteed to go exactly according to plan. However, experience brings wisdom about solutions to the disruptions and unforeseen issues. Knowing the potential problems keeps the key stakeholders vigilant, which reduces the unforeseen costs associated with disruptions. This in turn keeps the ERP project moving along smoothly, on time and on budget. Because of our experience with more than 500 enterprise technology engagements, Ultra is able to lay the foundation for a successful project and identify risks before they become roadblocks.
DECREASES TIME-TO-VALUE–because an on-time project is far more likely to also be on-budget.
Our seasoned ERP consultants utilize our proven methodology to bring the best results in the shortest time-frame. This methodology includes the best steps of action in the optimum sequence to maximize benefit while minimizing time to completion. Our consultants are so confident in this system that they can accurately predict successful project completion dates with a 93% accuracy–a statistic unmatched by any other firm.
Great ERP consultants have a deep understanding of enterprise technology and how it best operates within a manufacturing or distribution company. This wide industry-centric knowledge enables them to quickly transition from legacy systems and work-arounds to a robust, seamless integration without any delays.
Independent ERP consultants
Those with no financial ties to any ERP vendor–are an invaluable resource with a wide range of experiences and a deep understanding of how these systems work and will be able to configure them to meet a company’s specific needs. They provide valuable insights into how a company can improve its overall operations by using an ERP system, offering guidance on which features of an ERP system will be most beneficial for a particular company and how best to implement them. An ERP consultant acts as a trusted advisor to companies who are looking to get the most out of their investment in an ERP system, providing employees with the best training solutions they need to use the system properly with minimal disruptions to core business activities.
Don't let your organization attempt these projects alone.
The average company ends up spending 2x – 4x their budget and timeline when attempting an ERP project on their own. Ultra ensures that a robust plan is in place and drives the project towards an efficient and effective execution of the plan. We provide the templates, know the systems and vendors and have a deep understanding of process best practices. Therefore, we typically save our clients over a month from selection through implementation and an average of $160,000 over the lifecycle of the ERP solution.
Are you ready to see what an ERP consultant can do for your organization?
Call or set up a free 30 minute consultation with one of our ERP experts today!