There can be many reasons accounting for a failed ERP software implementation, some of them can be fixed at later stages while some may not be that lenient. Implementation process involves lot of small and unique but important processes which makes it a complex and cumbersome process to complete. Most of the ERP failures occur due to omissions during implementation process or due to lack of knowledge and ignoring best practices during the implementation phase.
If implementation of ERP software has been incorrect then software creates problems instead of help. At the time of such a situation revisiting the project management office shall be the first step towards fixing the problem, causing failure of ERP software implementation. The environment of the office needs to be checked if there is enough support for the project, present or not. The desire and impetus for making the project a success is primary requisite for proper implementation and fixing the problem. Experienced project managers shall be preferred over others as they have proactive measure and can establish strict discipline required to take corrective steps.
Independent advice shall be taken either for continuing the troubled project or regarding identification of the root cause for failure of the ERP implementation process. An independent analysis can cross check the whole project with a fresh approach which sometimes is not with the people who are actively involved with the project. Identification of the problem is 50% of the solution. An independent approach not only points out reasons for failure which are relatively more evident like lack of customization or missing GAP analysis but it can also point out more tangible reasons which may not be as evident but more damaging. Problems like poor change management, inflexible working with the new system and delays in achieving desired and accurate results can also cause failed ERP implementation.
Most of the time ERP software implementation does not fail because it was not done properly but because it was almost done. The 90% of project was completed successfully but remaining 10% either takes more time than 90% of the project or it becomes impossible to complete it. Quick fix methods at this stage can be of great help and can save the loss of money and time already invested in the implementation. Some success, which may be small in comparison to the failures, can turn the tide and bring momentum to the project which can inspire the team to strive even harder to make it a success.
Avoid and discourage blame game, blaming software vendor or ERP software or IT infrastructure. These are genuine reason for failed ERP software implementation and are not easy problems to fix but these are not always the root cause of the failure. Most of the times these become victims of people shedding their responsibility on others head. Be ready to take bold steps as half measures are not going to serve any purpose sometimes it is better to abandon the project than throwing good money after bad to resurrect the project.