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Why go live is not the end of your ERP project

How long does an ERP implementation project last? Many organizations plan a schedule for their implementation that ends at the go-live date. However, the reality is that ERP should be more than software—it should be a long-term strategy that must be continuously embraced and enhanced by your users.

ERP common pitfalls

When ERP (or CRM) projects fail, it’s often not due to the implementation process itself, but rather because of problems after go-live with poor user adoption, lack of proper training, inefficient use of the technology’s capabilities, or lack of ongoing maintenance.

Specifically, lack of user adoption is a top reason for failed ERP projects. Unless your users have the knowledge they need to use the new system most effectively, they’re going to continue doing their jobs the same old way because that’s what they know. It’s critical to prioritize training and check-ins, as well as soliciting feedback from your team. If they aren’t using a particular feature, you should determine why and how to help.

Ongoing support also matters a lot. Do users have someone to call when they have issues? Is the support personalized, timely, and helpful? This is important for simple support requests, but high-quality, expert support is even more critical for more complex, urgent support needs.

Cloud-based systems include automatic updates, but there’s still a bit of maintenance and intentionality required to get the best from your solution. As you get settled in with your new ERP system, you’ll likely find some processes which could be improved. Do you need to subscribe to additional modules? Do new workflows need to be created? Is additional training needed for a certain area? A dedicated ERP project management team should continue beyond go live to record and prioritize requests for features, or to identify when a particular feature isn’t getting used to its full potential.

Creating a strategy for after go live

How can you build a comprehensive strategy to prevent problems after go live and ensure your organization gains all the long-term benefits of your new ERP solution? The key is to be thinking about this process before and during your implementation.

The critical span of time after go live should merit its own detailed plan. Identify any potential problem areas, constraints, or risks you’re taking. Plan on different ways to encourage user adoption. Create quantitative goals to measure success of the new system after go live, and then set up a high-level strategy for communicating both successes and problems that occur.

Ensure success with help from the experts

Your business’s ERP system is at the heart of your daily operations and ongoing success. Your implementation partner is an integral part of avoiding common pitfalls after go live. If you want to get the most from your software investments, Arbela’s experts are here to help your organization with everything from choosing the right solution to implementation to long-term support. Contact us today to learn more about creating an ERP roadmap for your unique organizational needs.