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Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) implementation can be a complex and challenging task. While many organizations have successfully implemented an ERP system, others have failed. The Management of the client team has to be aware and sensitive to these aspects in order to mitigate the risk of failure. Here are some of the top reasons why ERP projects fail:

  1. Not a Right-fit ERP system: Selection of the right-fit ERP system is vital. The system must have a functional fit to get the user’s acceptance. Statutory compliance from an audit angle is also substantial. Going for a global brand and popular system that is not the right fit, will result in too much customization and delayed implementation. So this accounts for 70% of project failure.
  2. Poor Project Management: Poor project management is one of the most common reasons for ERP failure. The project team should have a clear plan, and a project timeline, and should monitor the progress of the project regularly. Follow-up is the key. At a crucial face, even hourly follow-up is a must.
  3. Inadequate Resources: Implementing an ERP system requires a significant amount of resources, including time, money, and personnel. Inadequate resources can lead to poor implementation, inadequate training, and poor user adoption.
  4. Lack of User Involvement: User involvement is critical for the success of an ERP system. Users should be involved in the implementation process, including requirements gathering, system testing, and training. Lack of user involvement can lead to poor user adoption and system rejection.
  5. Inadequate Data Management: ERP systems rely on accurate and up-to-date data. Inadequate data management can lead to inaccurate reporting, which can undermine the credibility of the system and lead to poor decision-making.
  6. Poor Implementation consultants selection: Choosing the right Implementation consultant is critical for the success of an ERP system. They should have the right domain expertise for the client’s business. Poor selection can lead to inadequate support, training, and system configuration.
  7. Unrealistic Expectations: Unrealistic expectations can lead to disappointment and failure. ERP systems are complex and take time to implement. Organizations should have realistic expectations of what the system can do and the time required for implementation.
  8. Resistance to Change: Resistance to change is a common challenge in ERP implementation. Employees may resist change due to fear of job loss, loss of individual importance, lack of training, or lack of understanding of the benefits of the new system. Resistance to change can lead to poor user adoption and system rejection.
  9. Inadequate Testing: Inadequate testing can lead to poor system performance and can undermine the credibility of the system. Testing should be conducted at each stage of implementation, and the system should be thoroughly tested before going live. Only through proper and dedicated testing, the users will develop their acceptance of the ERP system.
  10. Wrong start : The start date of ERP is to be aligned with the start of the new Financial year. But if the start is delayed, and if the cutoff date is decided from the financial year begning, then the users are forced to enter the catchup data. This puts enormous pressure on the end users and forces them to enter data on both legacy and new ERP systems. This would frastrate the users.

In summary, ERP implementation can be challenging, and success requires careful planning, selection of right-fit system, adequate resources, user involvement, accurate data management, and effective change management.

S. Vijay Venkatesh

Author S. Vijay Venkatesh

The author of this article S, Vijay Venkatesh is the MD and CEO of Syscon Solutions. He has put togethar over 4 decades of Manufacturing Industry & ERP experience. At Syscon he has handled over 150 ERP implementations for various verticals manufacturing industries.

More posts by S. Vijay Venkatesh

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