I recently finished watching the Super Bowl and what a great game to watch. You got to see two great teams battle it out and show their skills. It reminded me very much of the implementation process for manufacturing ERP software.
Think of it this way, your manufacturing ERP system would be the playing field and your team is what needs to be in place to practice and play on the field. When football teams begin their preseason and season, they have to practice to assure that they play well. It's similar when implementing ERP. The more you practice the more you are ready for the big "Go Live" day. You need to assure that you have a detailed training plan and execute it. You also have to allow all players (users) to practice their daily transactions and educate them on the impacts within the system (how to recover from a play).
Most people learn how to enter a transaction within their ERP system but they do not always know what the impacts are within the entire system. One wrong transaction can cause issues for other departments (team). You must assure that you are prepared when you go live and project leaders have to ensure that you get the training and education you need. The project leader (team captain) needs to assure that they have a good plan in place for this project.
Critical items that should be thought about when implementing ERP:
- Train users on basic static data setup. If this is incorrect, it will definitely cause you problems moving forward.
- Train and educate users on the transactions that need to take place within the ERP system.
- Train users on how to correct errors if they should occur, they are only human and bound to make mistakes.
- Make sure that they practice their daily tasks on the system. Run it as if "live" because doing just a single transaction will not give them a good understanding of what can happen in an entire day.
Doing the above steps will assist you in knowing what needs to happen on the big day and how to recover if you fumble. Just ask the Green Bay Packers after their win over the Pittsburgh Steelers! Practice makes perfect.
Okay, so it's not really a football game when implementing your manufacturing ERP system but you still need a good team and a lot of practice to guarantee a win!