If you are considering implementing a new Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system, then you are probably at the point where you are outgrowing your existing system. You probably heard that an ERP implementation is significant investment in both time and money. While the end result is well worth the effort, the risk of failure is high if certain steps are missed.
The expectation is that your new ERP system will tie your organization together giving executives visibility to make critical decisions while giving the end-users a streamlined and efficient, easy to use interface to help save time and money. One critical step for the success of your project is finding an ERP implementation consultant that’s the best fit for your business. We hope this blog series helps ensure that switching your ERP system delivers the desired results and helps you with a successful implementation.
Finding the right ERP consultant who understands your business requirements is essential to helping guide you through this process keeping your project on schedule and on budget.
6 Qualities of the “Right” ERP Implementation Consultant
In our experience, there are 6 qualities to look for in an ERP consultant to make sure they will be a good fit for your unique business requirements. They have the experience with your new ERP system and your business to provide your company with the appropriate tools to maximize your investment for years to come. The “right” ERP consultant will have a combination of the following qualities.
Experience – Does the ERP consultant have extensive experience in technology, industry and companies similar and the same size as yours? Do they have a large numbers of previous implementations? The experience of both the consultant, firm and product solution should be given considerable review. They should be able to provide references and have completed numerous implementations. You want both a proven product and a highly knowledgeable consultant.
Industry Focus – Many ERP systems now have specialized verticals within an industry. It is important for your ERP consultant and chosen ERP software to have experience in your industry and be knowledgeable in specific verticals. For example, an Aerospace & Defense manufacturer will have much different requirements and regulations than a Pharmaceutical company. Make sure your consultant is familiar with your specific needs.
Methodology – Successful implementations are a direct result of proven and repeated methodology processes. Your consultant should have a track record of performance of their standard methodology based on years of development.
Business Process Knowledge – ERP projects involve review and redesign of your business processes. You need a consultant that understands both best practices in business processes, as well as knowledge of your industry and how your goals and needs can be obtained within their ERP offering.
Ongoing Support – ERP projects need support before, during and after implementation. A strong support model, both from the Consultant and product company are critical to ensure the adoption of new processes, training of users, and to maximize the ERP system for quicker return on investment.
Cultural Compatibility – Too often overlooked, is the fit between the ERP consultant and the company conducting the project. Does the consulting company respect, value and have a similar company culture to yours? The culture of the ERP Consultant will have a direct impact on your project and they will be interacting with many members of your organization. Make sure it is a culture you want to be a part of and that coincides with your company’s philosophy.