How to implement an ERP: a practical guide
What does business success depend on? How many people — so many answers, but if you look at the problem in general, you can say one thing for sure: without systematization and a reasonable approach to doing business, you can not expect success. You may be surprised, but Enterprise Resource Planning System will help manage the company successfully. This article will consider what it is and the steps of ERP implementation.
What is ERP, and why should you implement it?
Imagine a house with many rooms and floors. Each room is responsible for a separate task — your business and its structural units, from the marketing department to the warehouse. And this house has a main room, to which all the corridors of this house lead. Tasks are managed from this room. From here, it is easy to get to a specific department and find certain information. And this is precisely how the ERP System works.
The steps for ERP implementation must open before you know all the possibilities of such systems. Namely:
- It will help to unite all departments into one system.
- Improve personnel management
- Systematizes data storage
- It will help to establish financial circulation and accounting
- Will have a positive impact on setting standards for production processes
- Keeps a history of actions and iterations
When the whole company works through one software, the primary source of information, a tool for interaction between colleagues, a way to record data, and many other functions simultaneously, it will allow you to get rid of confusing interactions. In short, ERP will allow you to work through one resource and perform all actions in one environment that will store the history of decisions and serve as a data source. All this is important so that your work does not turn into a mess, making it challenging to understand where the legs grow from.
Another fact about such programs: depending on the segment in which you work, you will need other software. Especially if you buy a ready-made program and not develop it, such solutions are usually explicitly sharpened for a particular market segment. A suitable system for a construction company is unlikely to cope with the tasks of a business from the fintech sector or a medical institution.
What are the procedures?
So what are the steps in ERP implementation? The question of success worries many who think about ERP because, according to a Deloitte study, only about 25% of launches of such systems are successful.
We have collected tips and steps that you should go through to successfully implement such a system in the routine of your business:
Define why you are doing it and set the goals you want to achieve.
Often people underestimate the importance of setting the right goals. First, understanding the purpose allows you to know whether you are on the right track in the work process. The goal also helps to adjust actions and evaluate intermediate and final results of work. This is extremely important if you plan to use the implemented system to benefit your business.
Find a team that will implement or develop such a system.
You’ll need a knowledgeable staff that can handle the technical part of the job and is familiar with the software industry trends and small distinctions between various ERP systems. Anyhow, in order to deploy ERP, you will need software that can perform a variety of functions. Such software is present on all of your workers’ work PCs and serves as the primary tool—or at the very least, one of the primary tools—of their trade, depending on the particular department.
Choose the type of system.
At least you have three options:
- Develop your software solution from scratch.
- Purchase and implement a ready-made cloud software solution.
- Choose something in between — buy a ready-made software solution that can customize it to your company’s needs.
Each of these options has both pros and cons. For example, developing your software gives you much wider opportunities in terms of software customization. But it could be not fast enough.
An off-the-shelf software solution is the fastest option, but it gives you less freedom of action. That is, you may need more functions and some of the available features you will not use because they are not needed to solve your company’s problems.
Pre-made cloud software solutions — one of the most popular options that may be partially customized for your company. This compromise could be practical for many people, but it might not meet the demands of particular firms since there are still not enough alternatives, and it might take too long to execute for those who need it quickly.
If you opt for an off-the-shelf software solution, the team you hired for the process will quickly complete their task and train you on the system. You will need to think of it at least whether you go for the route of partial customisation or full-fledged development from scratch. It is a part of what ERP implementation steps you need to take.
The length of the project, the quantity of resources needed, and the estimated scope of the task may all be more easily determined through qualitative analysis.
What else should be done?
Usually, this is an iterative process. The first to do their job are business analysts and designers who design the future software, its external and internal appearance, and logic. Next comes development, which brings to life everything that other team members previously designed. Testers detect bugs and send features for improvement. But this is a concise flow of work, which in real life can take months.
Implementation of the finished system in the life of your company. This means not only installing the software on all computers but also rethinking the current approach to work, setting up processes, and improving the software after the first weeks of your company’s work with it.
These are purely technical ERP system implementation steps, but you can’t do without them.
- Rethink the structure and habits of your working process
If you want the implemented system to work, you will have to change your usual work system significantly. This is a multi-level and complex process, so it should take place in parallel with development. This will give you, your internal business procedures, and your staff time to prepare and make the change from the old to the new work arrangement as seamless and simple as feasible.
A time of stability will also be required. which may entail some misunderstandings and slippage in performance. But once you get used to this update, you will see how much more transparent your work will become.
Systematization is one of the best friends of a successful business.
Where can you get an ERP?
You can always contact Magnise. Together we can create the perfect ERP System for your company.
By contacting us, you will receive:
- An experienced team that has been working together for a long time
- Deep understanding of trends and basic practices of modern development
- Constant communication with the team through the project manager or directly
- Speed and quality of work
We also guarantee you that the team will have a large share of independence, but will always consult with you on important decisions.
To find out more, come to us for a consultation, where we will discuss all the details of possible cooperation and our options for your project.