THE IMPORTANCE OF CLARIFYING TASKS IN AN ERP/CRM PROJECT

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THE IMPORTANCE OF CLARIFYING TASKS IN AN ERP/CRM PROJECT

Implementing a new software solution in your organisation is a daunting task. Nothing new here. To achieve success, many preconditions must be met. And on any of those conditions, the project can easily backfire. However, many misunderstandings and conflicts about the implementation of ERP/CRM systems can be traced back to unclarities about the division of tasks. To the simple question Who does what? Miraculously, both purchasers and vendors often persist in not creating this clarity on time. With all the associated consequences.

An implementation project implies several cost categories, such as licences, maintenance, various services and hardware. With the introduction of the cloud model, it has become increasingly easier to determine the costs for licenses and maintenance. This also goes for the infrastructure and the hardware where, after all, a high degree of standardisation has taken place.

That only leaves the services. A crucial point here is that every stakeholder has their own set of expectations with regard to this aspect. As a customer, you often compare the proposals to what you were used to with your previous vendors. And your vendor uses his or her own usual approach as a frame of reference. And from this frame of reference, they compose their quotation. In this way, you are missing each others point!

For every implementation, there are activities that can be delegated to either the vendor or to you as the customer. Such as writing up a set of working instructions and training the end-users. Of course, your vendor can do this for you. But your well trained key users can also excellently perform this task! In this respect, it is important to determine what you want in an early stage. Do you have the time and the capacity to do this kind of tasks yourself? Do your employees have sufficient affinity for these tasks? Or do you prefer to focus on your core tasks and outsource those jobs?

Many vendors describe the division of tasks in their project plan. But way too often this is only written up once the contract has been signed and the budgets has already been determined. The challenge for both the vendor and you as the customer is to address the task division before the budgets are determined and before expectations start taking shape. And this does certainly not serve the vendor’s interest only!

We advise you, therefore, to ask for clarity already in a preliminary stage. And no longer to accept quotations in which the chapter ‘task division’ is lacking. In this way, you are laying the foundations for a smooth procedure during your next ERP/CRM implementation.