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ERP implementation



The process of ERP implementation is referred as  as "ERP Implementation Life Cycle".The following are the steps involved in completing the lifecycle. Shortlist onthe basis of observation



Selecting an ERP package for the company can nevertheless be comparedwith the process of "Selecting the right Person for the Right Job".This exercise will involve choosing few applications suitable for the companyfrom the whole many.



Assessing the chosen packages



A team of Experts with specialized knowledge in their respective field will be asked to make the study on the basis of various parameters. Each expert will not only test and certify if the package is apt for the range of application in their field but also confirm the level of coordination that the software will help to achieve in working with other departments. In simple terms they will verify if the synergy of the various departments due to the advent of ERP will lead to an increased output. A choice is to be made from ERP implementation models.


Preparing for the venture



This stage is aimed at defining the implementation of ERP in all measures. It will lay down the stipulations and criteria to be met. A team of officers will take care of this, who will report to the person of the highest hierarchy in the organization.



Gap Analysis



This stage helps the company to identify the gaps that has to bebridged, so that the company’s practice becomes akin to ERP environment. Thishas been reported as an expensive procedure but it is inevitable. The conglomerate will decide to restructure the business or make any other alterations as suggested by GAP analysis in order to make ERP user friendly.Click here for a detailed study on GAP analysis. A choice is to be made from ERP implementation models.



Business process reengineering



Changes in employee rolls, business process and technical details find place in this phase of restructuring most popularly referred as business process engineering.



Designing the System   


This step requires lot of meticulous planning and deliberate action.This step helps to decide and conclude the areas where restructuring have to becarried on. A choice is to be made from ERP implementation models.



In-house Guidance



This is regarded as a very important step in ERP implementation. The employees in the company are trained to face crisis and make minor corrections as well because the company can neither be at liberty nor afford the bounty to avail the services of an ERP vendor at all times. For more details on ERP training click here.



Checking



This stage observes and tests the authenticity of the use. The system is subjected to the wildest tests possible so that it ensures proper usage and justifies the costs incurred. This is seen as a test for ERP implementation.



The real test



At this stage the replacement takes place viz. the new mechanism of operation and administration takes over the older one



Motivating the employees touse ERP



The employees in the organization will be taught to make use of the system in the day to day and regular basis so as to make sure that it becomes apart of the system in the organization.


Post Implementation



The process of implementation will find meaning only when there isregular follow up and proper instruction flow there after and through the lifetime of ERP. This will include all efforts and steps taken to update and attain better benefits once the system is implemented. Hence an organization has to perform ERP implementation safely and correctly.



Errors in ERP implementation



ERP implementation failure is a major concern for companies. ERP implementation needs to be done without allowing any scope for limitations and mistakes. If it is not done perfectly then the success of ERP system will remain a question mark. The first and foremost factor that discourages ERP inan organization is the exorbitant costs and investment. The second one is the drafting of an ERP implementation plan to ensure ERP implementation success.



Some more issues that arise during and after the course of ERP implementation is discussed below:



Enhancement of ERP'S functions



Erg's scope gets wider as it is implemented in an organization. There isa call for including many tasks under the purview. This dilutes the ERP Existing system after modifying it a couple of times. Repeated change inconfigurations and systems will only add to the confusions. When the functionsare operated by a machine it becomes increasingly difficult to make the necessary changes. These troubles arise when they are not foreseen and addressed in the implementation stage. They have to be given a place in ERP implementation plan.



Organizational reaction to change



Changes do happen quickly and immediately in the organization after ERPis implemented. But if there is no proper understanding of the process or mishandling of information, it will result in questioning the ERP process. If updating is not done in the machine it will only affect the business processand create unnecessary confusions. The changes don't happen all on a sudden inan organization and expecting it immediately will only cause needless disappointments.In spite of all this expecting every member in the organization to respond proactively will not happen. If that happens the chances of ERP implementation success are great.



Inflating resources for ERPimplementation



The implementation time and money always exceeds the promises and stipulated deadline and amount. This makes companies to lose faith on ERP and ERP vendors. They think that ERP vendors overplay on the costs and time required but it is not so. Infact they are aware of it in the very beginning stage itself but have a different reason for concealing. They don't disclose itin the beginning because it would look like exaggerating. Infact no one would like to lose a prospective business and vendors are equally aware of the factthat "Truths are always bitter"! However many people mistake this tobe the cause for ERP implementation failure.



Organizations non adherenceto the stated principles



Organizations largely experience a wide gap between practices and preaching. In fact this has a negative effect on the entire business scenario itself. The voracity and impact of loss could be greater and more devastating when this turns out to be true even in the case of ERP. Since ERP successful functioning is purely based on following the laid down procedures the lag could throw a serious challenge on ERP'S potential right from the stage of it simplementation.



Problem of Transformationdue to ERP



Employees find it hard to digest the transformations that place in an organization all on a sudden due to ERP implementation. In fact employees exhibit positive signs as everything goes right in the first place. But as one progresses he finds difficult to work as it gets more complex. The initial interest and expectation turns into apprehensiveness in due course of time.There is another category of people who did not encourage ERP right from the conceptualization stage. Their state of mind during these circumstances deserves no special mention.



Conclusion

ERP vendor has to address all these issues in order to ensure that there is ERP implementation success. If everything goes as per ERP implementation plan then there are no chances of ERP implementation failure.
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