ERP Conference Room Pilot: Step One Towards Project Success
The ERP conference room pilot is a crucial step on the pathway towards your success with enterprise software. By demonstrating the functionalities of your new software to key stakeholders and decision-makers within your company, you can get the project off on the right foot and define a clear scope for the success of the project. Having employees and team members across departments interact with the software early on will not only help your project team to understand areas of the software that will need work, it also acts as an early training and software adoption tool across the organization. After all, if your coworkers can see just how much your ERP will support and streamline their day-to-day tasks, they’ll be even more excited to get started on it when it comes time for go-live. Easy user adoption without extra effort on your part! Your ERP conference room pilot will no doubt be a critical building block in the first steps of your ERP project, and it’s crucial that you take the time to plan the stage out thoughtfully to ensure that you wring all the benefits you possibly can from it.
Read on for even more on how to truly get the most out of your ERP conference room pilot!
Keep The Project On Task
The facilitation of goal-setting is one of the most valuable benefits of a successful ERP conference room pilot. By defining the system and the exact business processes it will be designed to support, you can delineate the priorities and targets you hope to achieve with your new software.
As soon as you decide on your software vendor and put your name on the dotted line, you should be building time for the various CRPs into your implementation plan, with a regular plan to test out the software and look over project goals to adjust according to success.
Outlining specific, achievable goals is one the easiest ways to avoid scope creep within your ERP project. By continually referring back to the original goals and expectations set during your ERP conference room pilot, executives will have a clear vision of what the system will look like and what it will able to do on go-live day, circumventing the inevitable disappointment that can come when employees and leadership alike accrue unreasonable expectations about the software’s functionality.
Setting down specific times for the CRPs will also keep the ERP project team focused on what needs to get down to progress through your stages efficiently and without mistakes.
Find Potential Weak Spots
Throughout the series of conference room pilots, you will be able to accurately track and understand the progress of your ERP system and how quickly it will integrate into your business. Some parts of your new ERP system will be intuitive, while other aspects will not; the CRP is one of the first times that you will be able to begin picking these aspects apart and setting out a plan towards making sure that the problems disappear by go-live. One of the biggest factors of catastrophic ERP failure is poor planning and a lack of safety nets for every possible scenario that could go wrong with your ERP. A detailed CRP will alert you ahead of time on where to start building those safety nets, and help you understand how to think about the integral relationship between your software and your business processes.
If there’s a certain functionality within the system that’s proving to be more difficult than others, or a hole in the system that needs to be patched up so that it can provide all the functionality you need, the CRP is one of the first places that weakness will show. That way you can get your developers and software experts to work immediately smoothing out all the kinks.
The First Steps of Training
Those weak spots that you find within your ERP system will also provide a key opportunity to start building your change management and training strategy. You’ll quickly begin to learn common sticking points for employees, and they will be able to voice early concerns or complaints and get more involved in the training and implementation process. As you move through each ERP conference room pilot, different key members of your business will have the chance to work with the new software and carry out essential business processes in that testing environment, so they already have a period to get familiar with the software and common processes with it.
Going through a carefully considered ERP conference room pilot could prove to be the essential step your project needs to succeed. The testing stage not only allows for reasonable goal-setting and training, it will also be an integral part of getting your entire company excited for the software and eager to utilize it. It is a crucial first stage in the ERP implementation process, and it’s vital that you take it as seriously as every other aspect of your project.
For advice on how to tailor a conference room pilot towards your specific business needs and processes, get in touch with an expert at Datix today. We have over 18 years of experience helping businesses implement ERP systems at every stage of a project from vendor selection to pilot testing to go-live. No matter where you at, we can meet you.