A lot of hard work is required to select an appropriate ERP for an organization and many organizations do not spend time on pre implementation stage. Software selection is a crucial decision and if an organization takes inaccurate or incomplete decision it may suffer failures which can be very expensive for the organization. The organization should not only select appropriate software but also prepare to bring in changes in infrastructure and business processes which may be required for successful implementation.
Sometimes the organization that selects an ERP is not aware of the way the system will work until the process completes. The companies may require changes in business processes to get appropriate benefit and the highest priority should be given to risk associated to the solution selected for implementation.
Key points for selecting right ERP
Analysis of need: First the organization should conduct an analysis of the needs and try to find out the business problems and strategies which are not appropriate. The need of new system should be identified. During this process the company may have to modify its structure and working process to suit the requirements of the automated system. There can be some areas which cannot be handled by ERP or automated processes, and these areas should be identified. The company can decide to buy or not to buy an ERP depending on the needs.
The requirements also include business requirement where the executives may have to identify the regions where the business processes are not suitable for automated system.
Business case and ROI: The cost of the project should be analyzed and it should include the hidden costs such as the cost of data conversion, expense on project resources, loss of productivity, expense on license, training, replacements etc. The company buying the software should not overly estimate the benefit.
Software implementation partners: Software should be easy to use and it should come in the price estimated in budget. The company going for implementation should analyze the pros and cons of selecting a particular team for the project. Some leading software provider does not have feasible and cheap implementation process and in such cases external team will be required for the process. There are some small consulting companies which provide easy and cheap implementation.
Resources: While selecting an EPR package it is important to analyses the resources that will be required for the process. The resources include human resource, funds and time. The company may have to form a team that will be purely dedicated to the process. The team may need inclusion of some of the employees at the top level. It should take into account that the time devoted to implementation may be unproductive which may not be a profitable phase for the company.
Risk analysis and contingency plan: The Company should make a risk plan while selecting the software. It should be prepared for the amount of funds which will be required in case the implementation fails. In the process, the company may have to study the condition in which a process fails and study the risks which can be prevented.