In a recent post they talk about the importance of business process reengineering noting how important it is to analyze your workflows and processes early in the process. To quote directly from a recent post found here.
“…Some things look good on paper but don’t translate to reality – project teams decide business process reengineering will take too long, cost too much money and expose the project to too much risk. After all, isn’t it reasonable to assume that if we start configuring software without spending time to change our business processes, that the implementation will go faster? On paper, yes. In reality, no. Failure to address or improve business processes too often results in additional complexities caused by inefficient operations that result in immensely slowing down the technical aspects of an implementation.”
The truth is, companies need to look at their processes before they get involved with software selection. A lot of ERP salespeople however will encourage prospective clients to “defer to the ERP software to deliver business process improvements.”
Again, the folks at Panorama sum up this wishful thinking clearly and effectively:
“We’ve all heard it repeatedly during ERP vendor sales cycles: don’t think too much about your current or future business processes until after you buy our software. This is often referred to as the “easy button,” which most of us know does not exist for ERP implementations.
In reality, most ERP software is extremely robust and flexible, meaning that even the simplest business processes can be executed in numerous ways, resulting in millions of potential variations across any one organization. This complexity is overwhelming, will slow down your project and will ultimately cost you a great deal of money if your business processes aren’t well-defined prior to beginning the design and build phases of your implementation.”
The lesson for companies looking to build a better infrastructure out of modern software and technology is simple: focus on the business needs (not the whiz-bang technology) and start that process with a firm focus on how today’s process and workflow will translate into tomorrow’s. Only once you’re confident you understand that piece does it make sense to get serious then about software.
We’ll have some closing thoughts on the key steps required to do that in our concluding post. Stay tuned…