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Managing An ERP Systems Project: One Universitys Success Story Mary Nell Donoho Associate Vice Chancellor, Information Technology University of Arkansas.

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Presentation on theme: "Managing An ERP Systems Project: One Universitys Success Story Mary Nell Donoho Associate Vice Chancellor, Information Technology University of Arkansas."— Presentation transcript:

1 Managing An ERP Systems Project: One Universitys Success Story Mary Nell Donoho Associate Vice Chancellor, Information Technology University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences

2 Copyright Information Copyright Mary Nell Donoho, This work is the intellectual property of the author. Permission is granted for this material to be shared for non-commercial, educational purposes, provided that this copyright statement appears on the reproduced materials and notice is given that the copying is by permission of the author. To disseminate otherwise or to republish requires written permission from the author.

3 Tell Me What Implementing an ERP is Like?

4 What the Consultants Say…

5 What the Consultants Know… Turf War Denial Doubt Realization Burnout Sacrifice Revision Dispute Departure Deviation Disillusion

6 The Trough of Disillusionment Its too hard to use… It doesnt do what I need… The data is wrong… Everyone can see my data… Why do I have to… When can we implement X… I told you so…

7 Project Manager Leaps tall buildings effortlessly Catches bullets mid-air Stops speeding locomotives Has nerves of steel Has a backbone of steel Possesses the Can-Do spirit Is a Master of Compromise Fixes cuts, scrapes and bruises with a smile

8 Users: It Cant Be Done! Too little money Too few people Too little time Too many other priorities Too much resistance Yada, Yada, Yada! Yes, it can!!! And, we proved it!

9 University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences Mission: Education, Research and Healthcare Delivery Location and Service Area Size and Diversity Cultural Background

10 Project Mercury Project Mercury was a strategic business initiative to replace financial and administrative systems at UAMS. The selected software is SAP. Our implementation partner was Plaut Consulting.

11 What Did We Implement? SAP R/3 version 4.6b Modules Accounts PayableAccounts ReceivableGeneral Ledger Funds ManagementControllingProject Systems Travel ManagementPayrollAssets Management Personnel AdministrationTime & Leave ManagementTraining & Events RecruitmentOrganization ManagementBenefits ProcurementInvoice VerificationInventory Management Major Interfaces HBOC Patient BillingHBOC Decision Support KronosAASIS

12 Project Mercurys Charge Replace all legacy information systems Reengineer all business processes Distribute access to data and systems campus wide Achieve system maintenance economy Keep it simple!

13 Project Mercurys Challenges Design systems/processes by campus wide consensus Wholesale redesign of chart of accounts Implement 18 major pieces of functionality Dedicated full-time project team of only 25 including no business experts No backfill of positions No paid overtime 11 months to implement it all $8.5 million project budget funded by program budget assessments

14 What Was the Outcome? All in-scope functionality was implemented big bang without significant business interruption The project was completed on time and under budget The project team had a 95%+ retention rate Provided 9,083 hours of hands on training to 905 students in 3 months Deployed 1,100 licenses in 7 locations throughout Arkansas We must have done something right?!!!?

15 How Did We Do It? Understood our mission and held tightly to it Aggressively managed scope creep Emphasized the need for communications and cultural change Developed a solid plan and managed it tightly Built an understanding of project importance and a sense of team Assigned responsibilities and held people accountable Looked for and found creative solutions

16 Manage To Achieve Your Mission During product and partner selection During work planning During implementation During go live During planning for subsequent phases

17 Project Mercury Organization

18 Manage Scope Creep Be thorough in defining initial scope Define and use a strong scope change process Management support is critical

19 Manage Communications Develop a policy Develop a protocol Develop appropriate forums Manage the message Timing is everything You cant communicate too much

20 Project Mercurys Communications Plan Communication TypeDelivery PathMessage Content

21 Manage for Culture Change Change the Im okay, youre not! mindset Provide compelling reasons for change Personalize the business case Identify and utilize change facilitators Make process the focal point Make change personally rewarding

22 Manage The Plan Select your toolkit carefully Optimize tool usage Communicate the plan Minimize revisions Make follow-up an obsession Take no prisoners!

23 Project Mercurys Project Plan Project Preparation 5 weeks Plan Development Project Charter Team Formation Business Blueprint 16 weeks Process Definition Organization Structure Definition Team Training Change Management Assessment Realization24 weeks Software Configuration Testing Change Management Delivery Data Clean Up Final Preparation 7 weeks Conversion Finalization & Testing Integration Testing Continues End User Training Cut Over 52 weeks

24 Manage The Team Choose members wisely Elevate the mission Articulate the vision Share the spotlight Build a war room Create partnerships Recognize and encourage team play Provide growth opportunities

25 Manage The Assignments Balance work assignments Document work assignments Provide incentives to succeed Delegate appropriate authority Recognize contributions Support where necessary Monitor! Monitor! Monitor!

26 Manage Using Creative Solutions Identify non-traditional resources Find the hidden talent Leverage current investments All work and no play….. Liabilities can become assets

27 Keys To Our Success Senior management support Proactive operational management Sense of urgency to succeed The right partnerships Adequate focus on the human element Understanding it is a business initiative, not just another IT project

28 Lessons Learned Treat the project as a business initiative Commit the required human resources Manage expectations diligently Respect the integration impact Dirty legacy data will kill you Test, test, test…then test some more

29 Questions Visit our website at


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