MRO Magazine

4 Qualities to Look For in an ERP Vendor’s Implementation Team

By Marketwired News   

STERLING, VA–(Marketwired – October 12, 2015) – When you’re looking for a new ERP system for your business, you most likely have a list of criteria the software needs to meet before you make the purchase and begin deploying it throughout your operation. It’s important to know as much as you can about the software, but it may be even more important to know about the team that will be helping you implement it.

When a project fails to stay on budget or deliver the results promised in the sales process, it’s generally because of a flawed implementation rather than deficiencies in the software itself. As you evaluate potential ERP vendors, look for these qualities in their implementation teams to help you find a partner that can help you get the best results possible:

1. Domain and process expertise

You’re not just looking for new software, you’re trying to find a way to improve your end-to-end processes to achieve greater operational efficiency and reduce costs. That’s why a great vendor shouldn’t only have mastery over its software — the real value add comes when the vendor can help you update your processes to include best practices and improve your business as a whole.

To that end, look for a vendor-side team that will come with industry experts who can speak to you on your terms and deeply understand your challenges and goals. They should be able to install the software, tweak your processes to match it and educate your users on best practices — all with the goal of helping you get the greatest possible ROI out of your new system.

2. Adaptability and creativity

Every implementation is different, so your team should be able to adjust its own practices to meet your specific needs. Every new project will have its own contours, with different market conditions, existing business practices and even personalities giving shape to the task ahead.

Your vendor should have the experience to think outside the box and alter its methodology to fit your implementation. And when unexpected issues arise, they should be able to adapt on the fly and accommodate changes without falling off schedule or budget.

3. Open communication

A new ERP system is a significant investment. Not only are you paying for the software and implementation, you’re completely overhauling your entire business’ way of doing things. This requires a major commitment of time, money and resources, which means you deserve accountability and transparency through every step of the implementation.

Your vendor should have predetermined milestones that mark progress throughout the project. But beyond that, it should hold frequent meetings with your internal project team to keep you abreast of any developments during the implementation — good or bad, and there should be an expectation of transparency on both sides.

4. A proven methodology

An experienced vendor isn’t going to “just wing it” at any point during the process. Look for a vendor that can demonstrate a track record of success with its implementation methodology. The method by which it deploys your ERP system should provide the team with structure and order while still giving them the means to alter the strategy to handle unexpected setbacks or accommodate any unique requirements you may have. With a strong blueprint, you won’t be subject to any surprises as you deploy your system.

It’s not enough to find the best available ERP software. It’s critical that you also look for the right people to help you maximize your ROI. Finding a good ERP implementation team is all about looking for a vendor that has industry and software expertise and strong project management skills in equal measure.

Caroline Gerenyi
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