The introduction of a new ERP system always has the goal of working better, faster and more efficiently in the future - so there are always high expectations behind it. However, it should not be forgotten that such a change is always a profound cut in previous work processes. In the following, we have put together a few small tips for you, which, from our point of view and experience, are worth thinking about in advance.
Strategy first! Often the main reasons for deciding on a new system are of a technical nature - e.g. lack of interfaces, lack of evaluation options, etc. etc.. However, the strategic goal is often neglected. Sit back for a moment and think about the goals you actually want to achieve. How should the system help you to strategically position your company? How can the system relieve you and, of course, your employees of your daily tasks so that you can concentrate primarily on the development of the company? Will the new system lead to improved transparency of your processes? Will you be able to better control the state of your company in terms of customers, finances, controlling, stocks or your production? So define these actual goals for yourself and for your company.
The introduction of a new ERP system is a profound cut in previous work processes. Employees have become accustomed to processes that may now have to be handled completely differently. This can fuel fears. Experience shows that there are always many employees who are sceptical about new software and fear an increased workload. You must not brush aside or neglect these concerns. A successful ERP implementation is not "dictated" by the management, but should be supported by many employees. So take the time to communicate the goals. Explain what benefits you expect in the future, but also communicate that long-established ways of working will also change. Put the improvements in the foreground and thus create a certain "anticipation".
ERP implementation is teamwork! Just as all the information from all departments flows together in a complex software, a powerful team should be put together that represents the cross-section of your company. But beware! A suitable key user does not necessarily have to be the head of a department. An employee from the day-to-day business is sometimes also a good choice, as he or she often knows the tasks in detail better and anticipates both challenges and potentials of a new software more quickly. One more tip: Be courageous! It's not a problem to include employees in your team who play a key role but are sceptical about new software. This way you will quickly recognise the "sticking points" and can react at an early stage.
Do not be irritated. Things change sometimes. Many aspects that are defined in the run-up to an introduction are subjected to another critical examination during the actual project. This applies especially to possible workflows, necessary evaluations, questions about forms, interfaces to third-party applications, etc. etc.. An ERP implementation always resembles a dynamic process in which readjustment is part of staying on course. The main thing is to keep your eye on the goal!
There are always situations in which the ERP implementation is planned "from the top" with far too much ambition. Be aware that the necessary planning and preparations for data migration etc. have to take place alongside the day-to-day business. Therefore, give the relevant team enough time and resources so that planning and preparation can be carried out properly. Quality is more important than speed - after all, you are laying the foundation for your most important tool for the next few years during the implementation phase. So find a healthy balance between an ambitious timetable and sufficient freedom to carry out the introduction successfully.
As you can see, an ERP implementation is always a challenge for employees and the company, but it can be organised efficiently, successfully and stress-free with the appropriate, concentrated preparation. The result is usually worth it: faster, more effective work, relief for employees, transparent processes and better planning and analysis then provide the good feeling: our ERP implementation was a success!