How long is the ERP implementation period?
The length of an implementation period may vary depending upon the specific needs and nature of each organization. Factors impacting the length of an organization’s ERP implementation period may include, but are not limited to: the complexity of your business processes, your individual requirements, and the degree of your customizations. Of course, another influencing factor is your organization's commitment to the ERP implementation process and its willingness to work together to make it happen. Good planning, coordination, and collaboration will help reduce the amount of time for ERP implementation. A proven implementation methodology, like the one abas has developed, leads you through the process of the ERP implementation efficiently.
The major phases in the ERP implementation period
The project implementation methodology used by abas USA has been developed over four decades and is the result of real-world project implementation experience in multiple industries. The methodology is process focused, not data focused. The implementation methodology is developed systematically to enable each one of our customers to achieve operational excellence.
The project teams implement industry best practices, examine processes, seek opportunities for efficiencies and provide strategies to maximize both the software and the business processes. The implementation is broken down into multiple phases with distinct milestones. Major phases in the ERP implementation period include:
Planning and organization
System selection and installation
Data conversion and loading
User training and procedure development
No matter how long ERP implementation takes, the result is the use of ERP technology that makes the jobs of end users easier, while offering organizations enhanced capabilities and significant gains in efficiency. And understanding of the life cycle phases gives you a head start on experiencing a successful ERP implementation.
Milestones of an ERP implementation
The following are the typical milestones in an ERP implementation with abas:
Blue Team Review-Sales Hand-Off: The abas sales team will hand off the client information to the abas project team. The abas project team will be briefed by the sales team on the customer needs identified during the sales process.
Discovery Meeting: An on-site meeting between the customer stakeholders and the abas project team will be held to discuss the upcoming project. The discovery meeting will examine business goals, processes, strategy, expectations, and project scope. This meeting provides the framework for the entire project.
Kick-Off Meeting: This onsite meeting will officially kick-off the project. The company will announce the strategy and expectations to their staff. They will introduce the abas project team. Initial process mapping will occur and abas training will be provided.
Yellow Team Review 1: In preparation of the first simulation (SIM1) the abas project team will meet with the abas Subject Matter Experts and review the processes to be simulated and any special requirements.
- Simulate business process flow for each functional business area by processing transactions through abas, using data entered in the DEMO database.
- Documentation of transaction flow and abas transactions to be used to conduct daily business.
- Identify and log gaps between current abas functionality and desired functionality essential to run the customer business operation effectively and efficiently.
Yellow Team Review 2: The abas project team will meet with the abas Subject Matter Experts and review SIM 1’s protocols, notes, and Gap analysis. Customization requests from the change log will be examined and solutions developed. Estimates will be developed for all proposed customizations and approved by the customer before any work commences.
Red Team Review 1: In preparation for SIM 2 the abas project team will review with the Subject Matter Experts the new customer focused solution. This model includes all the new processes and customizations that have been requested and approved. All customizations should be completed prior to this meeting and the entire solution tested. SME’s will make recommendation whether the solution is ready to be simulated.
SIM 2: Customer specific solution will be simulated. Customer project team and abas team will evaluate the processes to ensure the new solution meets the customer’s business needs. The GAP analysis will be reviewed to ensure all the requirements are addressed.
Red Team Review 2 and Go Live Prep:
- The abas SME’s together with the customer and abas project teams will review the results of the simulation 2 customer specific solution. The Red Team will make the decision whether the customer’s solution is ready to Go-Live.
- Final training should be completed. The project team will make final adjustments to the user training material and/or course content. User documentation should be completed..
- The remaining master data and static data must be completely loaded prior to Go-Live. This includes system tables, application level tables, BOMs, Customers, Vendors, dynamic data, sales data, general ledger account numbers, products, etc. Once the final data has been uploaded the abas consultant will verify the load and perform a backup.
- Load the actual Inventory. Review for accuracy and ensure the data is matching the legacy system’s number. Load AR/AP and GL data.
Go-Live: The customer specific solution is Live and used by the organization. All financial transactions work. All business processes are flowing correctly.
Month End: After the first 30 days, or month, of being live, abas will assist the customer in closing their month’s books. The project teams will examine how well the solution operated. The financial team will walk through how to close the month.
Green Team Review/Handover to Support: Once Milestone 11 is successfully completed the project is no longer in “implementation” mode and will be moved into support status. Usually within 30-60 days the customers main point of contact will transition to a Key Client Manager within the Support Group. The Upgrade and Support Agreement will be in place to service and support the customer from then on.