68% of ERP Project Failures Can Be Attributed to Poor Project Management and Planning.
We can help ensure that YOUR project will be on-time and on-budget.
The IT industry is rife with articles, commentary and ideas about how to improve ERP projects - many of these focused on effective project management. Yet, the failure rates have remained steady at over 50% for the last 20 years.
So, with the availability of all this expert opinion and guidance, why does the lack of effective project management remain one of the top five ERP failure points?
It comes down to a variety of significant factors that fall under the umbrella of "Project Management". More specifically, our experience and analysis puts the focus on a lack of Project Control and Transparency. Without close monitoring and management of these factors, a project will inevitably slip closer to failure.
In no particular order, the top five reasons for project management failures are:
Poor Requirements: In the context of failed project management, poor requirements and specifications can stem from poor pre-project planning and requirements gathering.
Unrealistic Expectations: In many projects, the expectations of end users and executive management are misaligned, leading to unrealistic expectations.
Lack of User Involvement: User involvement and buy-in is critical for the success of an ERP project. If users aren't satisfied, then the final solution will never be fully leveraged and the project will be considered a failure.
Lack of Executive Support: If a senior level executive is not engaged throughout the project, the project is doomed for failure. People disagree during projects, requirements need to be reprioritized, and hard decisions need to be made. If there is no senior level support for the project, no one will ultimately be responsible for making decisions for the success of the project.
Scope Creep: Many project managers fail to recognize scope creep early in the project, typically leading to a lack of resources and an extension of the project timeline.
We have a better way ... "The Right Way".
EntryPoint's Project Management Methodology
We recognize the many challenges to running a successful project and delivering an ERP project on time and within budget.
Our Project Management Methodology differs from most:
- We consider project requirements early in the sales cycle to ensure requirements are gathered both at the executive and end user levels. We look at functional and non-functional requirements, reports and preferred customer interfaces. Our delivery team works in conjunction with our sales team to make sure that we can deliver what was promised to our clients.
- Our focus is on delivering project control and transparency. We leverage project management technology to create a project portal that ensures greater control and transparency. Every team member and executive sponsor is given access to the project schedule and tasks so that all issues, risks and milestones can be viewed and addressed in real time. We ensure that the project team is TRAINED on the tool so that there are no excuses to providing timely updates. Moreover, all of the project documents are stored in a central location providing easy access for all project team members.
- We utilize a proven project management methodology which minimizes project risks and increases the likelihood of a successful project by identifying and solving issues, obstacles and risks before they negatively impact the project.
EntryPoint's Project Control & Transparency
While EntryPoint must assume responsibility for the management of our client's internal project resources, we've learned through experience that the client resources benefit from participating in the project assessment, planning and ongoing status reporting process. By having participated throughout the key phases of project management, there is ownership and buy-in to our client's solution. Our time tested methodology focuses on three key areas that, when done well, ensure a successful project implementation by increasing project control and transparency:
- Planning: We understand that the success of a project begins before the project is set to begin. As we kick-off a new project, we thoroughly review the statement of work, project objectives, assumptions and risk factors so that we can establish realistic expectations for the project.
- Clear Responsibility and Accountability of Team Members: All team members are given a clear understanding of their roles, responsibilities and time commitments for the duration of the project. Moreover, project standards are introduced to team members so that project milestones are consistently met throughout the project.
- Schedule Control: We continuously monitor and measure time, milestones, resources, risks and changes. However, monitoring is simply not enough to ensure a successful outcome. EntryPoint focuses further upon communication by establishing weekly project status meetings and monthly committee meetings with executive sponsors to ensure accountability for all team members.
Projects thrive or fail based on their ability to identify, define, track and act upon Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). The faster and more accurately KPIs can be accessed, reviewed, analyzed and acted upon, the better the chance an organization has for success. EntryPoint's project management methodology is predicated upon leveraging technology to analyze KPIs with our clients to ensure successful ERP implementations.
Picking an ERP Integration Firm
Every ERP implementation project requires good project management. EntryPoint, however, believes that the inclusion of strong project control and transparency, and a close working relationship with the client must be an integral part of the ERP project service offering. Simply providing some guidance, a project plan and timeline is not enough.
When considering an integration firm for your project, consider the following:
- Do they have specific techniques for requirements gathering which include functional and non-functional requirements?
- Do their sales and delivery teams participate in the sales process?
- Do they have experience and a methodology for managing ERP implementations?
- Do they have experience, methodology and proven tools for analyzing the performance of the project to keep your project on schedule and within budget?
- Are they skilled with, and use, appropriate project management techniques?
- Is all of the above part of a formal, tried and true overall ERP implementation methodology?
EntryPoint meets these criteria and more.
It's the EntryPoint Way – it's simply the "The Right Way".