Common Mistakes to Avoid When Implementing an ERP System

So you’ve decided to implement an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system for your business. Congratulations! You have a ton of benefits to look forward to: speedy and accurate analytics, mobile accessibility, and great task automation. But like anything, even great tools like ERP systems can have kinks in the hose.

Here are a few mistakes that can get in the way of a smooth ERP system implementation.

Fear of the Unknown

“The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown”
H.P. Lovecraft

The objective of a properly implemented ERP program boils down to accuracy and automation. This is a concept that is sometimes difficult to grasp for micro-managers and old-school number crunchers, despite the headache alleviation that comes with a well-oiled supply chain solution. The more planning you can achieve beforehand will help to make your journey through implementation trouble-free.

Lack of Vision

When moving forward with any organizational change, it is always wise to have a goal in mind. Lack of vision can leave you saying, “Is it worth the headache?” and that’s when companies fall back into the comfortable, yet ineffective old way of doing things. Avoid the possible headache and despair by putting together a master list of the wants, needs and objectives that best benefit your company, strengthen partner relationships and keep your customer base satisfied and happy. This list can be added to, and edited based on the collective goals of your organization. Is collaboration important to you? How about inventory management? Shortening the sales cycle? The flexibility of a cloud-based ERP can help you meet all your specific data goals.

Opaque Objectives

CIO Magazine notes, “One of the most common mistakes made during ERP implementations is to assume that ERP can be used to run a business end-to-end.” Set goals that make the most sense in growing your business, and optimize what brings you the most value. Automation and cost reduction are understandably popular objectives. For example, ERP provider Kenandy offers a seamless procure to pay feature that allows you to optimize value and cut unnecessary costs. By allowing real-time visibility, you’re able to make better purchasing decisions, reduce administrative tasks and capture a past record of relevant communications on a given invoice.

Over Consultation

Luckily with today’s options of user-friendly ERP solutions, you don’t need to go outside of your budget for implementation specialists and system managers. Though it may be tempting to hand over the reigns to an expert, a successful ERP system is collaborative, meaning an all-hands-on-deck approach. Investing time and resources in proper training and participation requires some level of effort from C-level executives to customer service representatives. Take some of that extra dough you could have spent on pricey consultation and treat your colleagues to a Pizza Friday during implementation. Pizza boosts morale!

Underutilizing Features

The number of features now available on cloud-based ERP Systems can be downright mind-boggling. Don’t be afraid to explore! Chances are pretty good that your system has superhero powers you have yet to discover. No longer just a tool for crunching data and resource management, the social aspect of real-time data delivery and partner collaboration creates a powerful sales and marketing tool. Mobile-enabled programs allow sales staff to share data and aid marketing campaigns by connecting with existing and potential customers directly and via social media platforms.

Insufficient Training

In choosing an ERP system for your business, a user-friendly interface that enables use from departments across your company and partners is essential. Lack of training can lead to frustration and a meandering implementation. For a successful implementation to occur, your company needs to function as a team. Dedicating time to proper training sessions, creating a task schedule of tutorials as well as addressing any questions, confusion and problems with your staff will keep your team on track. Cloud-based systems offer multilingual, interactive training and 24/7-support to provide a helping hand whenever it’s needed.

Today’s cloud-based ERP systems have a lot of cool features to offer such as automated procure to pay, social collaboration tools, mobile accessibility and superior sales tools. With a little planning, teamwork and training you can avoid common pitfalls when implementing the applications into your business.