Once you choose a vendor, how long can you negotiate on pricing?
ERP Contract Negotiation is a service we provide to our clients. You can certainly take the time that you need to negotiate.
I always say that you really need to understand what software you’re purchasing. You want to make sure you’re getting a fair market price for that software and that functionality. Then, you need to line that up with your statement of work.
There are certainly negotiations that could be done around pricing and terms of service, but what our negotiation processes really flesh out is a complete understanding of the statement of work and how each of those functional areas are going to be implemented.
What amount of training is expected per employee?
One of the things that we help establish that differentiates us from the vendors is a training strategy. Many vendors have great training methods – they have videos, recordings and documentation, but these may not be specific to your application. For example, if you have some customizations or some user-defined fields, vendors’ training materials are not going to cover that.
We conduct assessments to understand the change readiness of the organization. These assessments tell us how much training is needed per employee. This could be anywhere from ten hours per employee to a full month’s worth of training. It depends on the culture and the aptitude of employees.
User training is not just training on the system. You also need training on the unique workflow of each employee.
Do you have experience working with nonprofit companies?
We actually have a lot of experience working with various nonprofit companies. If you want more information, feel free to give us a call. Public sector is absolutely one of our key strengths.
What does success look like at the different levels of an organization?
A business owner may say, “We implemented the system and went live in nine months as we anticipated.” However, an end user may say, “We went live in nine months, but I didn’t get all the functionality that I was promised during the sales cycle.”
Do ERP vendors handle product disassembly?
Most companies are building things, so most of ERP software solutions are not necessarily geared for disassembly. There’s all sorts of nuances that come into play. For example, when you’re disassembling and refurbishing an engine, you need to be able to schedule and forecast on what parts are going to be good, what parts need to be refurbished, what parts need to be scrapped and where else these parts can be used.
While it’s difficult for ERP systems to handle reverse billing materials because of the complexity, there’s certainly a handful of vendors that handle it out-of-the-box or with extended solutions.
What would success look like for somebody in finance and somebody in purchasing?
I would say somebody in finance wants access to real-time data. He wants to be able to look across the organization at what orders are coming in, what’s shipping out and so forth.
For a purchasing manager, success is about establishing best practices and automating business processes to make more optimal purchases. Some companies carry a high value of inventory, but they can achieve cost savings by reducing this inventory.
Some of our distribution customers carry a little bit more inventory because they want the ability to service their customers as a one-stop-shop. For example, when a national emergency arises, and their customers are asking for more than usual, that’s when they see the benefit of carrying a little bit more inventory.
Do you offer formal training for implementation teams that are about to embark on an ERP project?
The answer is yes, we do have formal training. If you go to our website, it’s called ERP University, and we can customize it for you. We can train you on anything from change management to process management to what to expect during an ERP implementation project.