The implementation of an ERP solution is an undertaking of great complexity. Choosing the right software for you is important, but it is only half the challenge. If you want a successful project, you also need to work with a reliable implementation partner with the ability to deliver on your unique requirements and offer valuable leadership and guidance throughout the deployment of the new system.
Things to look for in your ideal implementation partner include the relevant skills and experience to be able to develop a comprehensive deployment plan, provide efficient project management and offer long-term support after the system has gone live.
So how do you discern between different implementation partners? To help your decision-making, we have compiled a brief guide that lays out the high-priority criteria that you should be considering when evaluating potential implementation partners.
You need to have a good understanding of the methodology of potential ERP implementation partners. What this means is the framework by which they deliver your project – you could call it their ‘blueprint for success’. It is essential that you take a good look at this and try to understand why they do what they do in their approach. A methodology for implementation should demonstrate how the partner has leveraged their own experience and knowledge to shape the methodology.
It should be more than a mere copy of the ERP vendor’s methodology or a generic set of steps that any ERP implementation partner could be using. At Eventura, we are committed to following our own exclusive methodology which we have cultivated and refined over years of experience in deploying numerous ERP deployments for different types for different businesses.
You want to work with an ERP implementation partner who understands exactly what you need from your ERP deployment. To achieve this, they will need a wealth of experience in implementing the solution you desire, and it can be even more helpful to find a partner with experience in successful ERP deployments within your sector/industry. You should ask for 2-3 project references to validate any claims about this with a prospective partner.
It is also important that your implementation partner understands key trends within your industry and follows best practice rules. A partner with a strong understanding of both your chosen ERP solution and your industry will be able to make accurate recommendations regarding the features of the software that will help your business achieve its objectives. Furthermore, with existing knowledge of the challenges and regulations relevant to your industry, they will be quick to get to know your business and develop the right solution.
3. Technical Development
Most ERP systems will require some form of customisation to make it fit your requirements. Out-of-the-box solutions rarely meet every need a business has. With this in mind, it is important to choose an implementation partner with the technical ability to provide the customisations and integrations you need.
Eventura is a Managed IT Services business as well as NetSuite Solution Providers and Sage 200 Business Partners, so we have the skills and experience to identify and deliver the entire project including all necessary IT infrastructure.
Trust is an extremely important element of any partnership. You need a good fit between your team and the partner that assists with the deployment of your new ERP system. These are lengthy projects so it’s important to have a positive relationship with your ERP partner.
It takes time to build trust, but you can look for partners whose values are compatible with those of your organisation. Do they understand your business and goals? Do their expectations for the project align with yours? Are you confident the partner is committed to a successful project? You should be able to answer ‘yes’ to all of these questions and more.
5. Skill and Experience of Consultants
Try to find information on the exact consultants you will be working with then evaluate their skills and experience. View their profiles and ask to meet with them if possible. Is there a pool of consultants at your disposal? Sometimes the project throws up challenges that require a specific skill set. Look for evidence of upskilling and continuing professional development.
6. Approach to Project Management
The management of the implementation is crucial. How does the partner structure its project team? Will they communicate with you constantly throughout the project? This links to the methodology so you should know what to expect and when. Who is the point of contact if issues arise? You need to be able to rely on your partner for a swift response when problems occur and a great project management approach will facilitate this.
7. Support and Training
ER implementation requires ongoing support once the system has gone live. Your implementation partner should accommodate this by providing long-term support as required. A key part of the implementation plan should be training, and you should choose how this looks for you. Do you want ongoing training for staff in their specific areas of the ERP solution or do you want to train ‘super-users’ who can go on to deliver their knowledge in-house? A good partner will go out of their way to ensure a smooth and successful transition.
8. Relationship with the ERP Vendor
An ERP implementation partner should have a good relationship with the ERP vendor they represent. They are an intermediary between you and the vendor and, if they have good lines of communication with them, they can easily raise requests for support or changes that require the input of the vendor. Look for the level of partner certification and any awards the implementation partner has won as recognition of their relationship with the vendor.
9. Trust Your Gut
All of the previous points are extremely important and warrant huge consideration, however you also need to remember that you might be working with your ERP implementation partner closely for a long period of time. It’s important to trust your gut and work with a company who you get a good feeling from.
A successful ERP implementation isn’t just reliant on the technical stuff. It’s also reliant on forging a strong relationship with your implementation partner, so choosing someone you think you will genuinely work well with and who you trust is paramount.
The list outlined above is not exhaustive, but it provides the main points you need to consider when making a decision about which ERP implementation partner to go with. Choosing the right ERP implementation partner is crucial to the success of the deployment. You need a partner that brings the right team, skill, knowledge, experienced and shared goals to ensure you have a solid foundation for success.
Here are some other ERP article you might find useful;
- What is ERP software?
- Top Benefits of an ERP System
- ERP Implementation Steps
- Building an ERP Implementation Team
- The ERP Selection Process Explained
- Cloud ERP vs On-Premise ERP
- 10 Reasons to Embrace Cloud ERP
Why choose Eventura as your ERP implementation partner?
Eventura has been providing robust business solutions to countless organizations for over two decades. We are ERP experts and can identify all of your business needs, and deliver a comprehensive ERP solution that works for you.
As Sage 200 Partners and NetSuite Solution Providers, we can help you identify which solution will fit your business needs the best. Our expert team of business analysts, developers, consultants, technicians and support staff can guide you through your entire project, from initial scoping through to implementation and on-going support.
We’re also managed IT service providers meaning we can help you identify your entire IT infrastructure requirements from day one. If you would like to speak to one of our ERP experts, you can request a free call back here.