Every new ERP project begins with purpose, direction and anticipation. A successful implementation means streamlined processes, more efficiency, reduced waste, better customer service, bottom line savings and top line growth.

But over time business needs change, and an ERP system can lose its edge. System performance starts to lag. Or competitive advantage erodes as early adopters in your industry implement newer technologies. When your ERP stagnates, so does your business performance.

Avoiding ERP stagnation takes more than good intentions. Ongoing success requires a strategy, a plan, specific goals and the appropriate resources.

What are the top five mistakes that lead to ROI draining ERP stagnation?

1. Failure to evaluate and refine business processes – Many companies have no real idea how their business processes work in practice. Identify opportunities for continuous improvement and uncover areas where additional ERP functionality could be applied to the business. Don’t let software define your business processes for you.

2. Forgetting to foster employee success – Ongoing training and certification for users helps them maximize the value of your ERP investment, provides professional development, and keeps valuable resources fully engaged. Remember, software can’t replicate institutional knowledge — talk to process owners.

3. Lack of an upgrade strategy and plan – Too often, organizations don’t do a thorough ROI analysis. The decision to upgrade is a commitment that needs to satisfy three key requirements: How will business operations benefit? Can the organization execute the upgrade effectively? Do you have a clear upgrade project strategy and plan in place?

4. No understanding of change management – Change management is never over. Manage expectations. Sometimes it’s the culture that has to change.

5. Losing sight of emerging technology –Is on premise ERP better for you, or are you ready for the cloud? Cloud ERP seems simple yet so complicated – dedicated cloud or hybrid cloud, public or private? What about mobile ERP and managing bring your own device (BYOD)? Will regulatory changes require additional services or new modules? How do you plan to manage your data and extract meaningful information from it? Are you ready to think about big data, business intelligence (BI) and advanced analytics?

6. Not getting the right help at the right time – We started out talking about five top mistakes – but not calling on your trusted ERP partner is also a mistake. It makes sense to keep up with technology improvements. And you don’t need to constantly change your operations because of new functionality, technology platforms or regulations. You can benefit from guidance on best practices, processes, and taking user needs into account. We can help you anticipate changing internal and external business needs, evaluate new processes and functionality, and measure results. Don’t let your ERP go stagnant. Contact Strategic today.