How to Ensure a Smooth ERP Go-Live

 
In many organisations, the much-awaited ERP go-live may sometimes end up failing to meet expectations, and nowhere close to making a splash that it was expected to accomplish. While one of many, or a combination of multiple factors may have contributed to poor implementation, it is necessary to understand that going live is like a nuclear reactor attaining criticality. This important milestone demands planning, with a sharp checklist. Here is a little cheat sheet that can help you compile a suitable checklist.

Proper training schedules as part of a user engagement plan

One of the most important contributors to the success of ERP implementation is a highly trained team. A team that is fully trained and competent to understand the overall process, in addition to role based training will spare hiccups during the transition. An undertrained workforce is a sure-fire way to court disaster during ERP go-live.

The dry run – comprehensive tests prior to launch

This demands the involvement of entire teams, to enable receipt of critical inputs during testing outcomes. Testing needs to be carried out across various parameters such as integration, stress, performance, systems etc. During this testing, it is vital that a proper back up process is put in place and executed, to simulate a live process. This will help the teams to understand and be prepared for the processes when it actually goes live.  This full-dress rehearsal of sorts is key to understanding possible gaps, and will help in rolling out corrective measures.

Tweaking user interfaces post testing phase

During the testing phase, many inputs would have dictated the need for rejigging the interface. This is a must, because when run in isolation, components would have appeared easy, but when executed as part of a large enterprise system, the same components would need matching of fields and labels so as to bring about better cohesion and seamless process flow. It is therefore necessary to make the necessary changes, through the ERP implementation team, which should ideally consist of different skill sets, as per the nature of operations and its objectives.

Proper planning and implementation will result in successful go-live, and eventually, improved ROI. As organisational goals change, processes will also become dynamic, therefore, this whole cycle of planning and testing should also be a co-existent, in-built process in organisational lifecycles.