ERP Strategy Post Go-Live
Go-live is by far the most exciting milestone in an implementation of new business software, especially an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system as the solution impacts nearly every department in your organization. But a company’s transition to new business software does not end with go-live. It’s important to also address post go-live actions to guarantee successful adoption and effective utilization of your new software.
What are the most important post go-live considerations?
Because of the social impact that implementing ERP has on an organization, thoughtful change management is essential. Successful adoption flows from the top down. Industry experts agree: bringing key users on-board early in the implementation is an important step that should not be overlooked or downplayed. But system adoption will continue beyond go-live. In fact, some of the biggest challenges that users will face start once the trigger is pulled on your new ERP. Effective change management smooths the transition from old ways to new by providing:
- Training and support. With the right level of training and support, employees can effectively master the new technology and business processes. Knowledge is the key to empowerment, and training exponentially increases broad-based support of new ERP software. Take advantage of opportunities to discuss with users what their needs are for additional training.
- Visibility. Measuring and communicating benefits and value helps encourage adoption of new processes. Misconceptions must also be addressed. Don’t let employees blame the adoption of a new system when the real issue may be their own resistance to changing rules and limits. If limits were set by management to prevent business risk and increase efficiency, then the purpose and value of those limitations must be explained to help build understanding and acceptance.
- Alignment to new business processes. Existing policy and procedures will need to be reviewed, so that they enable rather than hinder newly established workflows.
System Monitoring and Enhancement
Risk is substantially lowered at go-live when strong audit procedures are incorporated. During go-live, monitor the flow of data and how your system scales up. Have your team regularly generate and review reports in the ERP to help assess progress. With employees now using the system, any hidden issues can be shaken out and addressed.
Your plan should also include an ongoing process to review functionality so as to increase your ROI. ERP systems are complex. Keep current with product updates and new features, and continue to delve deeper in discovering the wealth of functionality your system provides.