Your Day Job Doesn’t Go Away Just Because You’re Implementing New Software
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Lately, you’ve come to accept that your business must undergo a digital transformation. You plan to implement an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software to accelerate your company’s business processes, improve customer service and increase quality. When the new system goes live, you anticipate that you’ll be able to improve operational efficiencies, satisfy rising customer expectations, and enhance your organization’s competitiveness.
There’s a lot at stake, isn’t there? So, why would you leave the task of implementing a new technology solution to generic books, training, online sessions, and not leveraging best practice gleaned over many years and hundreds of implementations? After all, your day job doesn’t go away just because you’re implementing new software. You shouldn’t allow the day-to-day responsibilities of running the business crowd out a technology project that’s critical to your long-term success.
The trick, of course, is to determine the amount of outside assistance that may be appropriate for your company. A moment of introspection may be useful. Although individual opinions can vary, your management team should be able to arrive at a consensus with respect to your business’ unique attributes at this particular moment in time. Right now, can you take on the challenge of implementing a new system with the right amount of support (more if you are busy or have less experience with ERP, less if you have a lot of internal success with ERP)?
As you work through this issue, ask your team to critique various aspects of your organization. With rapid changes afoot in the supply chain, there’s no shame in acknowledging your strengths and weaknesses. In fact, it’s imperative that you assess your capabilities with eyes wide open if you wish to chart a more promising path forward.
By way of example, consider the topic of employee roles. (Similar questions may be asked about other areas of the business, too.) Which of the following statements below is most representative of your organization?
- Employee Roles
- “Our employees know their roles very well and are accountable to their process responsibilities.”
- “Our employees know their roles but we need to strengthen their understanding and promote more accountability.”
- “Our employees do their work but roles and accountability have become blurred.”
Whatever the outcome of the exercise might be, it’s important that your technology partner is able to right-size alongside you. For example, if your employees can go it alone with a minimal level of technical support, then your solutions partner should provide you with access to online resources for self-directed work. If you require a little more support, then the solutions partner should have project managers available who can coach, counsel and guide your people, both online and in person. If you require a lot of support services, then the solution provider should have resources available to go onsite and do the necessary work. You get the idea.
Remember: a successful digital transformation requires a total solution – not just software. Make sure that you seek out a qualified solutions partner who can deliver just the right level of personalized services you need to achieve success. Settle for nothing less than a solutions partner who can help you achieve the positive, transformative outcome your company deserves.
Download our free whitepaper:
“12 Questions to Ask When Selecting an Implementation Partner”
Authored by: Thomas M. Birdwell, III – Birdwell International