In our prior two posts (starting here) we reprised the Top Ten Tips for a Successful ERP Implementation based on particular brand of software from a white paper written by staff at Panorama Consulting. At the conclusion of their paper, Panorama added 3 more tips useful when simply upgrading your ERP software. And here again, while ostensibly geared to a single specific provider, their tips are apropos of any major software upgrade.
Those Top 3 UPGRADE Tips were…
- Quantify the value of upgrading. Panorama states that you quantify the upgrade value by performing a thorough ROI analysis. Build the business case for the upgrade. Detail the specific benefits you hope to achieve, and apply a representative cost value to each, spread over a year or two.
- Research the features. Most upgrades include dozens of ‘feature’ upgrades, hundreds of ‘fixes’ and tweaks, and usually a handful of key strategic workflow or platform changes. Identify whether these are right for you. In most cases today (unlike in the past) the costs of an upgrade are relatively modest, but the benefits of staying current with your software vendor can be considerable. Just as importantly, the vendors today have made it such that not staying current can be prohibitively expensive down the road.
- Verify your vendor’s and implementation partner’s methodologies. To quote the consultants at Panorama directly: “The ideal implementation methodology will include activities such as building a prototype, conducting conference room pilots, performing gap analyses and testing functionality and integration. An effective implementation methodology also involves organizational change management and business process reengineering.”
You can find Panorama’s full set of upgrade tips (the Ten new and the Three upgrade tips) here.