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The biggest hurdle to tackle when preparing for an ERP implementation is aligning the organization around the initiative. This means creating clear alignment for everyone impacted by the new system.

It’s essential to align people around the three pillars of an ERP—process, data, and systems—to ensure the implementation team has a clear understanding of who owns the different parts of the implementation. This approach will reduce decision-making delays and project over-runs and improve success after implementation. By clearly delineating ownership of each pillar, post-implementation success becomes more achievable.

People to Process

Organizations should create clear ownership of processes at the start of the ERP implementation. Sit down with each function in the organization and inventory the company’s processes. Then, assign accountability for each process using a RACI.

The RACI defines who is responsible, accountable, consulted, and informed for each process. For example, revenue accounting would be responsible and accountable for the revenue distribution process while the production group would be consulted on certain inputs. Therefore, any process decisions regarding revenue distribution would ultimately be decided by the revenue accounting team lead. And the revenue accounting team lead would decide how and when to consult the production team.

Ultimately, the RACI model streamlines the decision-making process and prevents unnecessary debates between departments.

Read these do’s and don’ts for creating RACIs in the workplace.

People to Data

When preparing for an implementation, clarifying ownership and creating accountability for data quality is key. Create a data model to gather all metrics and data points necessary to run the business. Then, assign names for who is accountable for each piece of data.

Defining the responsibility and accountability of the revenue process is important but it needs to be taken a step further. Who owns data quality? For example, the land department is accountable for ensuring royalty owners’ addresses are updated. If accounting gets a returned revenue check, they know to go to the land admin to get the address updated.

Data ownership is often overlooked. Establishing accountability for data quality in the data model alleviates any questions regarding who owns the data and who is ultimately answerable for the accuracy of the data.

People to Systems

With well-established ownership of processes and data in place, the last component of aligning the organization is creating clear ownership of the modules in the ERP and systems outside of the ERP.

Organizations should have a system change process in place. In this process, each module should have one designated owner to approve any changes in the module, including user access, configurations, and integration changes. Module owners should coordinate with data owners to ensure the information is captured correctly and understand the implications of system changes throughout the ERP. This role should understand how the process works and data flows through the module to make effective changes.

Clear ownership for each system ensures the system is maintained and system changes align with process and data needs.

Key Takeaway

Aligning people around processes, data, and systems ensures the implementation team has clear direction around who to communicate with and who the decision makers are. To get the most value out of preparing for an ERP implementation, develop a project governance process. Create a decision-making framework to determine how decisions are made and clearly establish ownership around these three pillars.

Trenegy is a non-traditional consulting firm that helps companies align their organization to get the most out of their people, processes, and technology in an ERP implementation. Learn more about Trenegy’s expertise:

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