Selecting An ERP/Accounting System – Part II: The Pitfalls

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Selecting new ERP/accounting software to run your business is a big decision and can be a daunting task.  To help you successfully navigate a software selection initiative, Altico Advisors has developed a step by step approach. 

This is Part II of a 3-part series entitled “The 3 Ps of Software Selection – The Process, the Pitfalls, the Promise.”  Part I was a high level view of the basic questions you need to be asking and the basic elements you need to budget for as you work through the software selection process.  If you missed it, you can click here to read “Selecting an ERP/Accounting System – Part I:  The Process.”

Part II provides some useful insight into the pitfalls to avoid when selecting an ERP/accounting system for your company.   

For example, here’s a list of the most common problems that occur during the selection process:

–        Insufficient documentation
–        Insufficient training
–        Underestimating the implementation time/effort
–        Underestimating the costs
–        Overestimating internal capabilities
–        Over-engineering the project; Not allowing for course corrections
–        Focus on product vs. process and people
–        Choosing a system that’s too big or too small
–        Failing to obtain executive buy-in
–        Failing to obtain end user buy-in
–        Failing to establish criteria for measuring success

You can avoid these pitfalls and minimize your risks by following these simple guidelines:

–        Have thorough documentation
–        Set realistic expectations
–        Leave it to the experts
–        Be flexible, allow for course corrections
–        Create a short list early
–        Focus on a limited number of solutions
–        Obtain company-wide buy-in
–        Establish criteria for measuring success
–        Arrange and allow time for sufficient training

Stay tuned for “Selecting an ERP/Accounting System-Part III:  The Promise.”  Meanwhile, here’s a great software selection aid that you can download called a Software Evaluation Checklist.  It provides a rating scale and a way to rank any 3 products in a side-by-side comparative format (for example comparing Microsoft Dynamics GP with Macola).  Use it well!

By Marcia Nita Doron, Altico Advisors, Microsoft Dynamics GP Partner for Manufacturing and Distribution serving New Hampshire (NH)

New Hampshire Microsoft Dynamics GP Partner

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