businessman looking at business strategySelf-driving cars may be the wave of the future, but they are still a ways from being viable forms of transportation. Just last month, tests of one of Google’s self-driving cars led to the first crash of its kind. This shows that technology still hasn’t quite found a way to be completely superior to humanly-operated vehicles.

Even though self-directed autos may not be perfect, they still perform better than self-directed ERP implementations. Here are five reasons why:

  1. Most organizations are not experts in ERP implementations. No matter what your role is within your organization, chances are that you’re not solely focused on managing ERP software Even if you and your team have been through an implementation or two, there is no surrogate for having dozens – or even hundreds – of projects under your belt. Unlike self-driving cars that become driving experts with the use of data and surroundings to make safer driving decisions than a human may, self-directed ERP implementations are fraught with risk, unknowns and other challenges that can only be addressed by years (or decades) of experience.
  1. Time-tested and proven methodologies are the keys to success. Self-driving cars leverage historic data, hundreds of sensors and “business rules” to determine which moves to make. Self-directed ERP implementations typically lack proven toolsets and methodologies that are a cornerstone of ERP success. Unfortunately, it is vital to have clear set methodologies and processes to help you navigate the complexities of new ERP projects. These methodologies should also include the non-technical aspects of successful projects, such as change management and business process management.
  1. You know what you’re getting with a self-directed car, but few understand how complex a self-directed ERP implementation is. Sure, a self-directed car may have the occasional crash, but not nearly as often as humans have driving on their own. Individuals embarking on an ERP implementation may think that their ERP implementations are going to be as simple as driving their car, but come to find out that they are sadly mistaken.
  1. Humans can’t cause a self-driving car to fail like they can an ERP implementation. Automating much of the decision-making eliminates the human element of self-driving cars. ERP projects, on the other hand, are most commonly derailed by the human element. Resistance to change, an overly confident project team, lack of understanding and a host of other people-related issues are the reasons organizational change is the #1 cause of ERP success or failure. Self-driving cars don’t share the same dynamic.
  1. The rules for driving a car are well-defined and understood by most, but ERP implementations are not. There is a limited number of decisions to be made when driving a car, but there are an infinite number of decisions and variables to consider when managing ERP implementations. For example, there are a huge number of ways you could change your business processes to make them better – even if you simply leverage the software’s basic functionality. Unless you have a great deal of experience and a proven tool set, you will not be able to navigate these issues and are instead exposing your organization to failure.

Self-directed cars may be the wave of the future, but self-directed ERP implementations are not. It is important to make sure to find a leading ERP implementation consultant – such as Panorama Consulting – to help navigate these complexities.

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