Analysis of the survey results indicates that perceived benefits and goal achievement are tied to the degree of organizational and technical change experienced during a project.
CUSTOMIZATIONS: THE MIDDLE WAY The notion that a for-profit company can force acquiescence to a particular system is dangerously false. Reason for customization? Organizations are both customizing the software and changing organizational business processes and structures.
IMPLEMENTATION METHODOLOGIES: PLANNING VS. FLEXIBILITY human nature for ES users to become engaged in a system when it directly influences their sphere of work While we might involve users in the requirements definition and configuration phases of ES, we should expect that they are only partially tuned into what is being suggested.
RECOMMENDATIONS There is no simple formula for project success, but recognizing the legitimacy of diverse stakeholder views, even when they may differ substantially from one’s own, is likely to be an important factor contributing to success.
1. Persevere. Move from an acquisition to an implementation mindset that recognizes implementation as a long-term organizational change project. Reward partial deployment and encourage your employees to persevere with the more challenging aspects of the ES.
2. Recognize. ES projects need to be planned iteratively, recognizing that there will be divergent views about what is “best.”
3. Customize. Tailoring your ES should no longer be frowned upon.
4. Protect. Whether market-based migrations to new releases of ES software are necessary is irrelevant. Is the vendor committed to continued development of an industry-specific product? We have heard it said that buying an ES is like “getting into bed” with the vendor, but the relationship is not merely a one-night stand because you cannot go your separate ways the morning after go-live!
5. Innovate. Consider the idea that another wagon might be more appropriate to hop up on — and if one isn’t coming around, then maybe there is a bicycle that will get you where you are going more effectively.
6. Disseminate. Outsourcing your ES training is a mistake. Options Retaining project staffing and infrastructure well into the first year of ES production Using intranet and instant messaging as communication mediums — Encouraging the development of communities of practice where ideas can be shared among people engaged in similar practices — Utilizing special training teams that visit different locations and encourage broader discussion about the ES functionality once users have started to use the basics for their job — Providing help desks with “power users” who can help out with transactions that are done so infrequently that one-time training often does not help because users forget the procedures
The lesson is that you need to recognize that anything worth doing is worth doing until it doesn’t need to be done anymore.
APPLICATION PACKAGE SOFTWARE A collection of software programs that have been developed for the purpose of being licensed to third-party organizations. Generally designed to support commonly performed business functions and appeal to multiple types of user organizations.
Examples Accounting systems Human resources software Enterprise resource planning Supply chain management (SCM) Customer relationship management (CRM)
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