Many of our blog posts address the technical aspects of an ERP project plan. We often make the case that a manufacturer can achieve significant business results when guided carefully through a step-by-step ERP software evaluation and implementation project plan. Important considerations include following a well-structured methodology, utilizing effective collaboration tools, taking appropriate steps in planning the project, and gaining consensus from key stakeholders.
It’s our belief that with a thorough approach, the ERP team can be well on their way to objectively considering vendor solutions that meet the specific needs of the company. With sound methodology, companies are better positioned to select and implement the best ERP solution for their needs.
Stick to the ERP Project Plan, But Enjoy the Journey, Too
As independent ERP consultants, we well know the benefits of sound methodology and project planning.
However, there is something to be said for “enjoying” the journey.
In any engagement, whether it be business process improvement, software selection or implementation, our team can deliver everything that we committed to, but if the ERP project team does not have a positive experience, it’s that experience that they will remember.
To ensure total project success – which translates to completing the project on time, within budget, and with an expected outcome and exceptional service, we strive for an enjoyable journey with the following tactics:
- Communicate, communicate, communicate – Eliminate any surprises with effective, clear and timely communications to all stakeholders. Stakeholders include not only the core team and steering committee members but anyone else in the organization potentially impacted by the outcome of the project
- Have fun – the concept of “fun” is rarely used in conjunction with a typical ERP project, but why not? Create opportunities for informal ways to engage with the team, social/networking, good-natured competitions, etc.
- Celebrate victories – be sure to build in opportunities to acknowledge successes and congratulate the team on meeting milestones, and other victories along the way. These accomplishments don’t have to be big or major ones. Any size victory can be a good reason to celebrate.
- Be empathetic – take the time to personally engage with all members of the team and remember and respect that each team member has unique experiences and perspectives to offer during the course of the ERP project.
- Did we say communicate, communicate, communicate? – we can’t overestimate the importance of communication, which empowers the entire team.
As your organization heads into a business process improvement initiative, ERP selection or other project, remember the importance of balancing a well-structured methodology and plan along with a chance to enjoy the journey.
Your new ERP solution will have a broad and long-term impact on your organization; make it a good journey!
For further insight into what it takes for an effective ERP project, see an on-demand webinar library of informative and timely presentations.