ERP implementation is generally a five year plan for a midsized organization and therefore, the company should be careful to go for the most appropriate option after defining the goals. It has been found in a study that the TCO for implementation is very high and many companies do not provide the next generation software which should be able to meet the rising demands of the organizations. Secondly the time of implementation and resources required for implementation is also very high.
Defining Priorities and Objectives
The various stages of implementation include setting up goals and objectives, evaluation of TCO over five years, comparing the ERP packages, selecting the vendor depending on the vendor's reliability and software capabilities.
The buyer should try to see that the new product has the must-have functionalities previously defined by the company, and analyze the resources required for implementation.
ERP implementation cost should be taken for at least five years because there are many hidden costs involved in the process and if a company wants to implement it in limited budget it should have defined goals and the companies can go for midsized vendor which can provide customized solution at a low cost. The budget required for maintenance of software will be less for small and midsized companies as compared to large organizations.
There are a number of functionalities which may be changed or may get obsolete due to new software and therefore the business processes should be planned based on new requirements.
The new system should be able to provide a new working environment to support latest technological advancements such as emails, SMSs and e-commerce.
Low Risk Implementation
Go for vendors which can provide low risk implementation at a low cost and provide good customer support after implementation. The software should be scalable and easy to accommodate new changes.
Provide Competitive Edge
The software should provide a competitive edge to the company and improve the company's future prospects.
Functional Integration and Open Technology
It should provide functional integration where the modules such as material management, financials, production, planning and CRM are integrated at one place and the integrated system should provide a highly secure system.
It should have open interface to allow integration to third party software such as Human Resource or PLM software.
The platform of the software should not restrict its functionalities because in future the company may grow and it may need more independent systems. The selection of hardware and software should be done on the basis of the needs of the company.
Analysis of The Vendor Capabilities and Reliability
The buyer should request for the balance sheet of the vendor to find out that it can provide support in the long run. The support structure should be able to provide solution of many years and the public records and market presence can be studied to know more of about the company.
One can look into the product strategies and meet the technical team to find out about the technical capabilities of the technical team. Sometimes the key employees leave the project in between and it can delay the whole project.