The new year brings a new opportunity to define and execute the best digital and ERP software strategy for your organization. Wherever you might be in your ERP implementation lifecycle or digital transformation journey, there are always better ways to mitigate risk and increase the likelihood of success.

As we pointed out in our recent blog post with our top predictions for the ERP software industry in 2018, there are a number of trends to be aware of as you navigate the challenges of your transformation. In addition, there are several resolutions that will ensure your initiative is successful in the new year.

Here are five things to increase your chances for success and a prosperous implementation in the new year:

1. Educate Yourself on ERP Software Best Practices

The most dangerous implementations are led by those that aren’t well educated on the risks, challenges, and best practices associated with an ERP implementation. Fortunately, there are a number of free resources to help educate you on digital and ERP best practices. For example, our weekly ERP webinar series  provides hour-long training sessions on topics ranging from digital strategy to implementation to organizational change management. Our three-day Digital and ERP Boot Camps – hosted several times per year in different parts of the globe – are an excellent way to receive the training you need to succeed.

2. Control the Tempo of Your Initiative

There is often a push to “get something done” on projects of this magnitude. I get it. But it’s more important to make sure you have a solid plan in place, the right resources, clearly defined project controls, and other critical success factors. Believe it or not, going at a slow (but not too slow) and steady pace will actually save you time and money in the long-term. So even though ERP software vendors are incentivized to push you to purchase their software and start implementing right away, it is important to recognize that this is your project and that you control the tempo of the transformation.

SAP vs. Oracle Case Study

SAP and Oracle both invest heavily in cloud technology. However, our client was skeptical about cloud scalability and unsure if the products were mature and proven.

3. Invest in the People Side of Your Digital Strategy

What is the #1 cause of digital transformation and ERP software failures? Hint: it’s not technology – it’s people. Despite the importance of organizational change management, not a lot of people understand what the term means or how to implement it effectively in their organizations. Companies that invest in an effective organizational change strategy are much more likely to succeed than those that don’t. Even though a solid change strategy includes training, communications, change impact, organizational readiness, and a host of other change tactics that you may be overlooking, it doesn’t need to be expensive. In the long-run, it will cost you less to invest in this critical success factor than if you don’t.

4. Take Industry Hype with a Grain of Salt

Messaging from ERP vendors, sales reps, and analysts – all with biases based on economic incentives – would lead us to believe that on premise solutions are dead, ERP systems are a silver bullet for a company’s problems, and that their solutions can be implemented without much time, risk, or effort. None of this is true. So, be sure to recognize that most of the industry is biased and that their inputs should be taken with a grain of salt.

5. Don’t be Afraid to Leverage Outside, Independent ERP Experts

One of the best ways to accomplish resolution #4 is to hire unbiased, independent ERP consultants, such as those at Panorama. Whether you are about to define a strategy, evaluate potential systems, implement a system you’ve already chosen, or need help cleaning up an implementation mess, you need someone that is protecting your interests – not those of your ERP vendor or sales rep.

By accomplishing these five resolutions, you’ll be in a much better position to succeed in the new year. Learn more by attending our weekly webinar Top 10 Predictions for the ERP Software Industry in 2018, or watch it on demand here.

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