Cloud ERP implementation is a multi-step process with many subtasks in each step. One of the most important but frequently overlooked steps is choosing the right internal team for implementation.
Choosing the cloud ERP implementation team to represent the company’s interests and needs should begin before vendor selection. In fact, the team itself may lead the selection process. Finding the right people to steer the entire ERP process, from selection to implementation, can be crucial to the project’s success.
Who’s on the Team?
Just like a baseball or basketball team, a cloud ERP implementation team consists of people who play “positions” or have a specific role. In a typical cloud ERP implementation, there are five roles. You may find you need more people or people with specialized expertise to contribute to your implementation, so use these recommendations as a guideline, not a rule.
A typical implementation team includes:
- Executive Sponsor: Sometimes called the project “Champion”, the Executive Sponsor is the person who probably initiated the discussions among the executive team about the need for cloud ERP. They are usually good problem solvers and can help the rest of the team think beyond any immediate problems to see various solutions. They can also help remove internal roadblocks, secure funding for the project, and provide a communications channel directly to the company’s senior management team.
- Project Lead (or Project Manager): The Project Lead takes the initiative to call team meetings, provide agendas, organize schedules, and communicate the project status to all stakeholders. They also coordinate resources, create the project plan, chair meetings with the partner and team members, assess progress, and identify problems.
- Technical Lead (Technical/Business Analyst): The technical lead provides detailed documentation of the required customizations, reports, and integrations. This person writes down any custom coding in accordance with documentation standards and best practices and supports data migration and security activities. For Private Cloud deployments, the client might have dedicated technical resource(s) that manage their infrastructure. This person or team is responsible for the procurement of the hardware and software installation and networking component; and maintains test and production environments with upgrades when needed.
- Subject Matter Experts (SMEs): SMEs have specialized skills and/or knowledge of your financial requirements. Financial SMEs are needed to help define user access roles, rights, and privileges, determine segregation of duties, or establish audit requirements. Your organization may also hire outside contractors for specialized knowledge, which is called business process outsourcing (BPO).
- Department Representatives: In addition to the SMEs, larger departments may request that other representatives participate in the team. They may bring added experience or special insights and knowledge to the project.
Once the team is assembled, it’s time to get to work. Acumatica’s eight-step ERP Playbook to Implementation helps customers successfully implement a cloud ERP solution. You can download a copy to help you and your team make the best decisions for a successful implementation.
Although every implementation is unique, having the right people in the right roles goes a long way towards a smooth project. Before starting your ERP implementation, consider who might be the internal champion or executive sponsor, who might take the project leadership role, and which departments need a seat (or two) at the table. Planning now pays off in a great implementation later.
Emerald TC provides software and consulting for manufacturing companies. We can help you choose the right accounting software, ERP system, payroll, or other software for your needs. Contact us or call 678-456-6919 for more information.