5 Tips for Integrating Enterprise Resource Planning Software
Enterprise resource planning software (ERP), also known as business management software, is a selection of applications that assists companies to collect, interpret, manage and store business data. Core business processes, such as cash, inventory, payroll, raw materials, production, invoices and others, may be tracked by a data based management system utilizing ERP software. The data may be shared across the various departments within the business. ERP software is an important tool for facilitating the flow of information between all business functions. SaaS providers are beginning to offer packages that include enterprise resource planning. The following five tips will assist management to integrate ERP software.
- Leadership in Agreement: Everyone in a leadership position should be in agreement with implementing ERP software. If the owner and members of management are not in agreement, vital employees are likely to scoff at the idea also. Leadership should be convinced that ERP software is a sound business decision.
- Assign a Project Team: The project team should consist of members of management along with employees from each department. The project team should focus on vision, cultural change, utilization needs, resolve policy issues, refine goals and measure the outcome. The team will reinforce adoption of the ERP software visibly and vocally with employees.
- Evaluate and Select a Vendor: Evaluate ERP vendors to discover the best fit for a particular industry or business structure. Ask the vendor for references of companies that are similar in structure and industry type. Call these references and ask if the company is pleased with the vendor. Ask if the service/product meets the needs of the business. Consider the amount of time the vendor has been in business. Is your business already connected with a SaaS provider?
- Hire a Consultant: Many vendors provide a consultant team to assist with the implementation process. If a consultant team is not provided by the vendor, a consultant and/or consultant team is recommended. Select a consultant with a well known success rate with businesses in the same industry. The consultant should be knowledgeable of the particular ERP software purchased.
- Communicate: All staff should be informed of ERP plans with particular attention given to staff members affected by the ERP implementation. Communicating effectively to each person effected by the implementation of the reasons enterprise resource planning is necessary. Good communication will influence employees, guide employees and resolve issues. Continue to update staff effected by the process from introduction until implementation is complete.
*Photo courtesy of Enterprise Resource Planning Company in Noida by ERP Software Flickr’s Creative Commons.