Open Door Technology is excited to be celebrating twenty years in the ERP software business and it’s really amazing how fast these years go by! Twenty years ago, most software was still running in DOS. Changes were not long in coming as in the mid-1990’s, the software vendors attempted to move onto Windows, many not so successfully. Although the new graphical interface was interesting, many of our customers had never seen a mouse that didn’t have four legs. It led to some interesting times when we got into training sessions and it’s a good thing they came attached to a cord that kept them anchored to the computers.
After being around a couple hundred ERP system implementations, you start to pick up on a few things. The following are probably the more important things I’ve learned:
- Keep a lid on the scope. Don’t try to give the users everything they want and certainly don’t try to duplicate their previous system.
- Spend the money on the training. It will save you months of frustration. Our best story was a large client that carried out exhaustive testing and training. We phoned two weeks after the go-live date to see if they had any questions because we hadn’t heard from them.
- Do spend the time defining the requirements. It is often the only way to make sure that expectations are met.
- Project management is absolutely critical in reducing risk and ensuring that projects are on time and on budget.
- Don’t ignore change management and you won’t be surprised by the “pits of despair”. Any new system results in significant change for your staff. Many of them won’t like it and will go through some unhappiness if you don’t properly prepare.
With the changes in recent technology, I expect to see a lot less paper and more electronic interaction between business partners and staff. And we here at Open Door Technology are dedicated to providing software and solutions to enhance these interactions and operations. So here’s to the next twenty years of technology!
By Malcolm Roach, CA, President of Open Door Technology, Microsoft Dynamics NAV Partner based out of Calgary, Alberta