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Navigating ERP and Financial Systems Projects: 3 Key Tactics to Getting Started on the Right Foot

There are several benefits to investing in Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) and financial systems for your business, regardless of your current size or your goals for the future. They can streamline several business processes, making day-to-day operations more efficient and improving overall productivity. Not to mention, they can also provide the real-time information you need to make strategic decisions that support your growth.  

With several ERP solutions and financial systems to choose from, it’s important to ensure you’re investing in the right software for your business. No two organisations are exactly alike and what works for your competitor might not necessarily work for you. At Noledge, we understand the importance of integrating the right ERP software solutions into operations. Not only is new software a significant financial commitment, but it can also transform key business functions. 

In this blog, we have outlined three key tactics to help you get started on the right foot with your ERP and financial systems project, ensuring a strategic approach that meets your unique business needs. As experienced ERP software providers, we have worked with businesses across a range of industries and can ensure your journey towards implementing new systems is as hassle-free as possible, setting a solid foundation for success. 

1. Putting the Customer First 

From our experience, situations where vendors or partners become so focused on their end-of-month target that the needs and requirements of the customer become secondary, are always a recipe for disaster. Finance and ERP projects are considerable investments for both small and larger organisations alike. The steps to selection can vary from project to project depending on its scope and complexity, but in all cases, careful consideration needs to be given to all aspects of the project from: 

A. Ensuring the software ticks all the right boxes for your business, no matter what your operational needs may be.  

B. Finding the right implementation partner who not only knows software but knows your industry and can make tailored recommendations.  

C. Checking you have a good alignment with your chosen vendor/partner with evidence (such as customer references) that they will be there to support you every step of the way, from ERP implementation to ongoing support and account management. 

While there may be financial incentives to sign on the dotted line on or before a certain date (commercial reality), our advice would be not to gloss over the important details. Always be sure you are ready to sign and the contract meets your specific needs, as helping the salesperson achieve their target should not be your concern.  

2. Right First Time 

We take the approach that if it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing well. Everybody makes mistakes and in complex ERP projects, these things can happen, both on the customer and partner side. It’s important though that when selecting an ERP system, you have a good project plan from your vendor/partner and a good in-house project leader. Effective project management will ensure that everybody is going in the same direction and any red flags are raised and managed in a timely manner.  

Getting it right the first time may take some extra effort from all sides, but careful planning and execution will save a lot of heartache down the track. Things change and that’s the nature of finance and ERP projects, however doing a 360-degree u-turn mid-way through the project will undoubtedly raise some eyebrows and will have both cost and timeline implications. Close collaboration, a good project plan and realistic timelines are the key ingredients for success in any ERP project. 

3. Solution Alignment  

We’ll use a simple analogy here to illustrate the importance of alignment between your business and the software solution/vendor/partner. 

If salesperson A sells product 1, then they will try to sell you product 1.  

What if product 1 isn’t a great fit? Has salesperson A tried to shoehorn your requirements to fit product 1 or has he/she offered different choices and options, making the right recommendation for your business? 

We have seen many situations over the years where the wrong software has been recommended to customers. Most of these situations come down to the vendor/partner not asking the right questions and not satisfying the customer that the product recommended will tick their boxes. We’ve seen situations where the selected software doesn’t cater for multi-jurisdictional taxes, can’t handle the volume or complexity of transactions, can’t integrate with existing systems, or doesn’t have the flexibility to adapt to changing needs.  

We could write a book or a very long blog on all the situations we have encountered on our path, but for any business looking to take the plunge, our advice would be to ask lots of questions, not just about what you need today but how the solution will align with your business as you grow. The more information you can provide about your future plans, the better. Don’t settle for something that doesn’t fit right. A little discount now could bring trouble down the track.    

Choosing an ERP Software Provider and Solution   

Ultimately, when undertaking ERP and financial systems projects, it’s important to ensure you have the right team of experts on your side. Selecting the right ERP software provider is about more than just evaluating product features or costs, it’s about finding a partner who understands your business’ unique challenges and ambitions.  

Our job here at The Noledge Group is to ensure we are offering the best possible advice and guidance to businesses. We’re also not afraid to say no if a project doesn’t make sense for us or for the customer. We have an extensive network, so in situations where we feel we cannot deliver the right solution for customers, the chances are that we can refer you to another company that will be able to service your needs. 

We deliver finance and ERP projects across Ireland and the UK and have a 20+ year track record delivering quality projects from end to end. We don’t have any bots in our business, just real people. So, don’t hesitate to contact us today to discuss your unique needs in more detail. We will be happy to answer any questions you may have about our ERP software services and we can book an initial consultation with our experts to explore the various options available.  

About the Author

Picture of Sinéad Galligani

Sinéad Galligani

Sinéad has been involved in the software industry, particularly in ERP, for over 25 years. Her career has spanned various roles, including Account Management, Key Account Management, and Business Development. In 2013, she became the Marketing Manager for The Noledge Group and now serves as the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO).

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