In our tech-driven world, businesses need to constantly up their speed, efficiency, and productivity to survive in the industry. Implementing an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system can be the key to the whole thing. Their success in this endeavor can considerably lower costs, streamline workflow, and improve agility.
However, implementing such a system requires the time, budget, and staff of an IT department. Such a significant commitment of resources is a long-term investment to avoid unforeseen costs and possible delays in the future.
What they need to do is minimize potential problems by avoiding common ERP mistakes, and we’ve listed seven of them right here to help businesses do just that.
1. Poor Implementation & Maintenance Planning
Prior to evaluating various ERP systems, the existing processes need to be understood first to determine how improvements can be implemented to maximize efficiency. That requires up-front planning, where all policies and procedures can be internally audited. It’s recommended an ERP evaluation team (including stakeholders) be formed.
Even if the in-house capacity to identify the perfect ERP system is lacking, businesses can easily hire a third-party provider with the skillset and infrastructure to carefully weigh pros and cons on their behalf.
Similarly, many companies assume they can implement the ERP system in one go, but that’s far from reality. They need to carefully plan for maintenance and invest in a strategy to constantly improve the system for optimal safety, confronting risks such as cyberattacks.
2. Inadequate Budgeting
Too often, the top of the hierarchy underestimates the expenses associated with ERP system implementation and maintenance. In addition, they’re not clear on the level of training required for their staff to optimally use the ERP system. Inadequate budgeting is a common mistake of trying to achieve more with less, with the likely outcome being surprise challenges and multiple setbacks.
Before taking on an ERP solution, the management needs to estimate how much capital and staffing will be spent on this assignment. If there aren’t any in-house experts to provide a detailed breakdown, a third-party provider should be hired.
3. Not Involving Employees in Decision Making
Companies highly value the views of C-level executives when choosing an ERP solution since they’re the ones who approve the implementation process. Sadly, the same cannot be said for employees who’ll be interacting with the system every day.
This common ERP mistake could be easily avoided. Businesses should take in suggestions from employees on how the ERP solution will affect their current processes. By doing so, they’ll improve understanding and prevent operational complications down the road. It’s vital to consult the workforce across all departments like finance, operations, and warehouse, not just IT.
4. Lack of Clear Priorities
One of the most common ERP mistakes is companies often force people to multitask in the hope of minimizing delays and accelerating turnaround. However, multitasking has the opposite effect since most folks can’t juggle multiple balls simultaneously and constantly shift gears.
Preventing long delays and boosting productivity will only occur if people at the top and the bottom are clear on critical priorities for every department. For instance, the management must be cognizant that the ERP solution won’t help if its data quality is poor. They should stipulate appropriate programming parameters and practices in place to reduce/eliminate the possibility of errors and delays.
Therefore, the number one job of executives is to develop a priority system spelling out the order of tasks, signaling when executives need to get involved with the aim of removing obstacles.
5. Jumping Several Steps at Once
As stated before, implementing an ERP system is a complex task requiring figuring out all requisites, proceeding with the implementation phase, and training users before going live. Many utilize the traditional waterfall model, a somewhat outdated model that doesn’t generate results with modern tech solutions.
Companies need to make progress in small increments while involving end-users at every step to properly determine requirements, test out the solution, identify shortcomings, and then quickly skip over one hurdle after another.
6. Lack of Proper Vetting
Hiring an ERP service provider isn’t something you can implement based on tables and charts promising significant ROI. It’s vital to conduct comprehensive research and ask the right people before signing the contract. The reality is large ERP service providers don’t possess sufficient flexibility to tailor their offerings to specific operational requirements.
It’s imperative to carefully look at the quality of customer support and turnaround time while reviewing customer reviews and checking their credentials toward ensuring not being confronted with surprise functionality restrictions down the road.
7. Not Training Workforce
Among the more common ERP mistakes is that many organizations often put too much focus on the technical aspects of implementation and not nearly enough to effect change among their staff. An ERP won’t be that effective if the workforce lacks the ability or willingness to use it in their everyday tasks.
The success of implementing ERP solutions lies in removing barriers that prevent the widespread buy-in of the system. To assist personnel in feeling comfortable utilizing the new system, the company needs to invest heavily in communication, training, and support while helping employees at every level see the benefits of using ERP solutions.
With non-stop changes and developments in every industry, businesses need to be more proactive than ever and find ways to maintain their competitiveness and adapt to constant fluctuations in market demands. Needless to say, utilizing an enterprise resource planning system can be a critical survival tool on this path, but only if it’s affordable and has the ability to be tailored to meet the company’s requirements and objectives.
With the vast spectrum of various ERP solutions, each with its unique benefits and drawbacks, it can be a bit overwhelming to find the right one. Fortunately, you don’t need to look very far because IMTS’s ERP packages can take you to another level in retail/trading, import/export, the service industry, and even manage your special projects. What’s more, all the above is offered with flexible pricing where you’ll pay for only what you sorely need at any one time.