Note: For the purpose of this article, let’s assume that the CEO, General Manager, Head of Operations, business owner or any other important individual (who has a similar responsibility) is called the “Business Owner”.
Some business owners go on with the idea that they don’t have to be involve in ERP projects and their subordinates should be able to deliver a simple IT project.
Of course, what usually turns out to be a simple project is not always as simple as it seemed. And that’s where projects usually goes wrong.
Have you heard of similar stories?
I’m sure you have. With that, let’s dissect the issue a little more here.
Should Your Business Owner Get Involve?
Okay, I’m guessing that you’re already aware that this is a rhetorical question. The fact that I posted this topic, most would already assume that the answer is yes. However, before answering the question, there are other aspects of the project that one should consider seriously before jumping into conclusion.
And for the purpose of this article, we’ll focus on these 2 questions:
- What is the cost of failure?
- How badly do you (the owner) want the project to succeed?
What is the cost of failure?
You see, the reality is, an ERP implementation can fail. The reasons for failure can be many. However, if I were to very simply sum it all up, the most frequent reasons which I heard of are due to poor planning as well as poor management (people management to be precise) skills.
The worst part of these failures is not just the fact that it failed. But most implementation failure takes the route of a “slow and painful death”.
That means, it usually starts with the idea that the system is not meeting the original requirement. And then the project gets extended multiple times before the management decides to call it a day before they officially end the project.
However, usually, by that stage, the project would have cost roughly 2-3 times the initial budget.
While this is a extremely simplified version of how it goes wrong, the financial cost of the failure is a generally true representation of many failed cases.
Now, if you are the business owner and that you knew in advance that this could be the cost of a failed ERP implementation project, then ask yourself,
“Would I get involve?”
How badly do you (the owner) want the project to succeed?
Now that we know what’s the down side of the project, let’s flip the question around and ask yourself, “What’s the benefit of an ERP system to you (or to your company)?” We have written articles on the benefit of ERP (read here) but this is very specific TO YOU.
If you can see through this and know that the upside of the ERP system is more than what you realise, then would you not want it to succeed?
And hence, the question really is, how badly do you want it to succeed?
You see, many business owners are not really involved in the implementation process is partly because they cannot envision the benefits of the system yet. Many still look at it as another software implementation and have not taken time to understand the full value of the system.
If you are one of them (or if you know if your business owners who are like that), then I’d strongly recommend doing these:
- Speak to friend who is using a ERP system now and ask for the benefits
- Read books on this topic, you can find plenty on Amazon.
- Get in touch with our consultants (click here) and get a free consultation
Again, knowing what you would know after doing your homework on ERP systems, how badly do you think you want a piece of it?
When you can answer both the questions, you (the business owner) would know if you want to get involved already.
If you are reading till this part of the article, chances are you’re still interested to get involve in your own ERP project. As a gentle reminder, while you probably may not have all the time to be fully committed to the projects, getting involve does not always mean you have to be there 24/7.
In fact, it’s about being up-to-date with the progress and being able to make strategic decisions as and when required. Sometimes, all you need is an update on the critical issues.