Why should I as a customer consider which project model to be used when I implement a new ERP solution?
I can’t remember I’ve met any customer who has asked me which project model I use during the implementation of an ERP solution. Why should they? Every vendor has their own model, adjusted to their software and how it should be implemented. In addition to this we have a number of different methods (IPMA, PRINCE2, PROPS, PPS and Scrum) in which a Project Manager can be certified.
This is one of the sellingpoints that Salesperson for the ERP vendor often advocates while trying to sell you a ERP solution. “Trust us, we know how to implement our software. We have tools, templates for almost everything. We know”. At least all the big ERP vendors have prepared tools, template and plans. All the large international vendors have a huge repository of items which are good to use in the project.
This is of course very good and can simplify the implementation when the vendors project team drives the project. But is this always the best for the client? It is often a generic method which the ERP consultants has knowledge of and helps them in their work. That's why its quite unlikely that the method is prepared for the unique client's needs and requirements.
But we can’t deny that this also might be a risk involved in this. In this case the customer's project members might lean back and allow the supplier to determine the pace of the project. The members have not taken full ownership and are not 100% engaged in the project. The result is that, the project use a standardized method which does not consider any local requirements, such as skills, business principles, change management needs, business processes and more.
This sometimes result in a blame game. The local team has not understand their role or what’s expected of them and the vendors implementation team has for example not understood the customer culture, internal “political climate”. We've seen this more than one time and it’s a big mistake by the vendor. It’s a mistake by the customer as well, but the vendor is the one who should know better.
The consultant team is normally very professional, they know “implementation” and they know how to run a project. But is the local team professional? What experience do the customer have? The normal is the customer’s team members doesn't have much experience from ERP projects which can cause problems later in the project. Especially when issues appears.
One of ERP & Friends building blocks is “Customized Project model”. We aim for setting up a customer unique implementation model. This model is based on
The vendors implementation model
Well-known project models
The customer’s unique prerequisites
ERP & Friends experience
Our strong belief is by customizing our ERP project model so it fits the customers situation, we therefore increase the effectiveness of the implementation. We are convinced tha by using a method which is created together with the local team. This will ensure their commitment and their understanding of the “project” already from the beginning.