The sight of Sonny and Cher, long hair and round glasses, with hippy hair and outfits, crooning with caring, is not the thing of any ERP implementation we ever hear about. But the lyrics and sentiments of the song are the underpinnings of any good discovery, partnership, co-dependent implementation relationship, peace signs and all.
They say we’re young and we don’t know
We won’t find out until we grow
Well I don’t know if all that’s true
‘Cause you got me, and baby I got you Babe
I got you babe
Anyone can implement ERP. Businesses can learn the software, attend classes, pick brains, troll blogs like this one and follow their own made-up strategy for moving a business onto Microsoft Dynamics 365 or any other ERP system. Given enough time, budget, resources and resilience, any system can be implemented. An ERP implementation allows a business to invest in a future platform and grow that system into a new method of organizing and communicating within a business. You don’t know what you don’t know about implementing ERP but businesses give it the Harvard try. It is doable, just not the smartest way.
Businesses will contract with companies like Stoneridge Software to help them leapfrog up the learning curve using proven processes and procedures for implementing software well known to these experts. Partnerships, support, and sharing of knowledge make for a quicker, cleaner and less onerous implementation. A stable platform to grow the business off of should be the result of an ERP implementation with the clarity of vision and focus to get it done right the first time.
I got you babe
They say our love won’t pay the rent
Before it’s earned, our money’s all been spent
I guess that’s so, we don’t have a plot
But at least I’m sure of all the things we got Babe
I got you babe
Implementing ERP is expensive. Re-implementing ERP is even more expensive. The business of doing business so as to pay the rent and then doubling that with doing the work of implementing ERP solo is arduous, daunting, and fraught with failure. It is few companies that have the luxury of employing a full-time team of people just to learn, develop process and rollout an enterprise solution. By partnering with a solution provider, that burden is shared, the work is better organized and prioritized, and companies get more direct and indirect support and project fulfillment from this partnership.
I got flowers in the spring
I got you to wear my ring
And when I’m sad, you’re a clown
And if I get scared, you’re always around
Companies implementing ERP start out with a bang (read the “V is for Victory blog post about how to do this) and then reality sets in, people get nervous, the mountains of work seem higher and more all-consuming, and then we see how people start trying to protect themselves with shifting timelines and crossed arms. This is the scary part of ERP – the hard, cold reality of moving an entire business from the known onto the unknown. Having a team of resources available, knowledgeable about your business and processes, having done an ERP implementation twenty a time or more can be the wall of resistance to fear. This team that gets you and your operation will offer guidance, expertise and measured advise on all aspects of your project – technical, finance, supply chain, MRP, CRM, warehousing and much more. They are always around and yes, some can be a little funny. We all know how hilarious master scheduling really is…..
Don’t let them say your hair’s too long
‘Cause I don’t care, with you I can’t go wrong
Then put your hand in mine
There ain’t no hill or mountain we can’t climb
If ever you want the Bad News Bears to visit your front door, talk about implementing ERP. There are more war stories of disaster, near disaster, or complete disaster than there seem to be about success. Businesses are told they are too small for an ERP system, their processes too simple so Excel is fine, growing too fast, growing too slowly and many other reasons why ERP should be approached with caution or not at all. These stories we at Stoneridge have heard time and again. We have lived them and helped dig customers out of messes, helped customers respond to huge business shifts or growth spurts, and been a partner of progress and change in their operation.
Implementing ERP is not to be taken lightly and should never be attempted without a safety net and strategic, well defined and developed plan. Finding a partner with product and process expertise will provide the metronomic beat of measured progress and development of a project that is sane and is a pathway to success. No one has to be a soloist in the ERP implementation world. So, find the partner and get a plan that works and leverages the best of your mutual expertise. And some rose tinted glasses (for the go-live weekend) never hurt either…