Analysis and needs of your company
Whether it is a first ERP project or the migration of an existing solution, the choice of an ERP software should not be taken lightly. Choosing an ERP solution and operating it will impact the performance and productivity of your company. Before starting to compare the different solutions on the market, the first step will be to define and formalize your needs precisely.
First, ask yourself a few questions that will define your project more precisely and allow you to analyze your company’s needs:
- What is your organization type and industry?
- What are the requirements of your organization?
- Who are your users?
- Who are the key people in your organization? How much time will they be able to devote to the project?
- What are the weaknesses of your current system?
- Are your customers (and sales) suffering because of these weaknesses?
- Which features are critical to your operations? Which ones are you missing?
- Over the next ten years, what are your organization’s plans?
- What budget are you willing to invest?
The list may seem impressive and it is. Choosing an ERP and implementing it are major projects for your company and have a significant impact on its sensitive and critical operations. It is recommended to take the time necessary for this decision and to consult the points of view of all those who will work with and around this ERP implementation project: from senior management, employees, but also production, for example.
To facilitate the discussion, prepare questionnaires and plan group meetings. This will make it easier to reach a consensus on the needs, priorities, and criteria for choosing an ERP.
Your job will then be to rank these priorities: from critical, important, to the secondary. Then make sure you choose an ERP that will meet all the critical needs and satisfy most of the very important needs.
When looking for an ERP solution, also make sure you choose the vendor or integrator that will meet all your needs and that will accompany you through the project from start to finish. The solution is an important part of the project, as are the partners. A poorly managed implementation and a solution that is not adapted to your needs present significant risks: complexity, delays, additional costs, and difficulties with future upgrades.
Choose an ERP: Technical criteria and functional agility
In addition to your organization’s priorities, one of the important steps in choosing the perfect solution for you will, of course, be to meet your technical needs and criteria.
The selected solution will have to be flexible and scalable enough to accompany you towards new realities. If the ERP you are looking for has excessive limitations in terms of customization, we recommend that you look elsewhere.
Regarding technical requirements and criteria, here are the points you should consider:
- Agility and flexibility: is the solution scalable and flexible enough to support the company’s growth?
- Sustainability: Will the solution be able to support your projects in the medium and long term? What is its capacity to innovate, to propose relevant updates?
- Integration: with or without partners? Vendor or integrator?
- Support and assistance: will the solution be maintained internally, or should we rely entirely on the services of the integrator who is accompanying us on the project? What is the quality of the customer support (training, availability, responsiveness, etc.)?
- Cloud? On prem? Hybrid? Which hosting method works best for your organization?
- Security: how important is cyber security, data processing and security, but also user rights and whether information is shared?
- Functional scope: accounting, finance, warehouse management, etc. Is the chosen solution able to optimize all the processes and operations of the departments concerned?
Once your priorities have been defined and framed, the chosen integrator and/or editor will come to the implementation phase.
The key steps of the implementation
Depending on your needs and your project, the implementation of a management solution can take from several weeks to several months.
The implementation of an ERP software will take place in several phases:
After the start of the project follows an analysis phase which aims to adapt the offer to the specific needs of the organization. This will be the right time to refine the planning of your project as well as the implementation schedule. An implementation can take place in one or more stages depending on your needs, the availability of resources, the scope of the project, the modules, etc.
The important milestones to validate during the implementation will be the following:
- The parameterization,
- The implementation,
- The test phase,
The support and assistance will then take over.
Choosing, not a good ERP, but the best one for your company and then implementing it are complex and time-consuming projects, but not insurmountable, especially when you are accompanied by a trusted partner. You now have the keys in hand to make the right choice and successfully complete this digital transformation project.
Inmind has been supporting companies in their digital transformation projects for several years. Our teams would be happy to help you transform your technological challenges into business opportunities. Our many years of experience and our innovative solutions make us the ideal partner to support your organization.
A project, questions? Contact our experts!