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Business Transformation

Securing the success of your international ERP project

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Nowadays international ERP project implementations have been conceptualized. Remember the early ERP days when IT headlines were always about big IT-blunders?

We have grown to be faster and more effective. How? Well partly by focusing on the most important. I would say that there are two sides of international ERP project implementations that have to be taken seriously:

  • The sociocultural and technical challenges of local ERP deployments are often ignored or underestimated by international organizations at their own peril. The art of process harmonization has to be well understood by the stakeholders. On paper it’s very simple. When you add different people’s agendas, experience and culture to the harmonization you can easily start growing grey hair overnight. So understanding local deployments when making centrally-managed plans is essential for success.
  • The other dimension is about building quality into a global ERP project and mitigating the risks associated with harmonizing processes across an international organization.

Any IT project can be complicated, but in an international ERP project with multiple players and various local requirements, the complexity is exponential. That is why it is important to structure your project work in a way that, once you get started, will allow you to keep it moving towards a successful result. Such a structure requires that you prioritize tasks in a strategic manner and that you keep the work phases short.

A new international ERP project is like starting a revolt against the status quo

The minute you assume anything about ERP systems, you set yourself up for costly mistakes. The surprises are always buried in the details at the local level, and cannot necessarily be spotted from headquarters’ high level view of the main processes.

You should therefore never underestimate the complexity of local requirements, such as local language, work culture and technical challenges. Always make sure to involve local stakeholders and be prepared to identify and use changes not in your original plan.

Let Pipol help you navigate your next international ERP implementation.

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