If you are recovering from a failed ERP project, how can you start efforts to address the past failures?
As we noted in Ultra’s previous blog post entitled “Heading into ERP Project Recovery? Keep These Tips in Mind,” many organizations turn to Ultra to guide their ERP project recovery efforts.
We view the effort as a strategic process to remedy past failures and weaknesses the organization experienced with a previous ERP project, which might have involved either evaluation, selection and implementation or a combination of those phases.
For those recovering from a failed ERP project, this blog post turns attention to what is a successful path for organizations – setting a foundation that will remedy the shortcomings of the past – and establish alignment of expectations with management, improve the efficiency of the team, eliminate process waste, and reduce the time to benefit for the project.
Project Organization – the Place to Start the Recovery
A successful ERP recovery project requires assessing the project scope, objectives, and project organization. All involved in the project should be in alignment and have a common understanding of project focus areas. Organization includes setting:
- Building the steering team
- Allocating the project team
- Aligning process owners
Current State Analysis
When recovering from a failed ERP project, analysis of current state requires gathering key performance metrics and their value. Examples include productivity, quality, overtime, inventory, and others. This is typically a phase that was not a priority in the failed project, leading to less than ideal outcomes.
Project recovery also includes business process mapping. These might include processes like Quote to Order, Order to Cash, and Procure to Pay, depending on the organization.
As part of this business process analysis, recovery will be more effective when the team understands and has documented:
- Business operations
- Business processes
- Software systems
- Master data and information flow
- IT strategy & infrastructure
The next step is to prioritize these improvement opportunities based on cost, timing, change difficulty, and benefits.
Recovering from a Failed ERP Project? Get Educated
For an ERP project recovery, the process owners need to understand “what is possible” with a new enterprise software solution.
That’s where in-depth ERP education comes in to see what is available with modern systems, and if there are industry-specific solutions that will fit the bill.
Future State Opportunity
Development of future state process is also known as business process reengineering. This phase helps the team identify the gaps between the current state and industry best practices to effectively design the future state business processes.
This phase of recovering from a failed ERP project serves to identify areas where the organization can eliminate waste and improve business productivity. As the design of the future state becomes clear, it’s our suggest that teams define and quantify the benefits that can be realized from the future state.
This critical activity feeds into the development of key statements that articulate the business purpose and value of change, and helps drive project recovery.
Business Case for Change
When heading into ERP project recovery, our team of ERP consultants sees the business case for change as the main project driver and the foundational justification for the project.
It is a compilation of business value statements that are the goals to achieve in the Benefits Realization phase.
The future state vision developed during the Visioning and Education steps is taken and translated into a credible business case. During ERP project recovery, Ultra works with each of the process owners to develop a business case for his/her domain of responsibility with assignments they can confidently achieve.
The business case for change is important because it is used at every major milestone to confirm decisions and actions are aligned with attaining project expectations.
Project Charter and Transformation Roadmap
When recovering from a failed ERP implementation, or evaluation, it’s a best practice to putsa focus on business process improvement. At this stage the team then moves to the project charter. As part of this discussion, Ultra suggests the team work through the development of a project roadmap which defines the deployment strategy for the project recovery and transformation.
Heading into ERP Project Recovery?
Work smarter. See 5 guidelines for choosing an ERP consultant.
We’ll be addressing this topic again in an upcoming blog post, looking at a mini case-study detailing a current ERP project recovery with an aerospace supplier.
Looking to work smarter with ERP project recovery? Contact the Ultra team.