SAP implementation is very costly, time-consuming, challenging and insecure. SAP is usually adapted only when large companies require a complete change control in their internal systems. The complete change control could be in the form of new technologies, mergers and acquisitions, business strategy expansion or ERP rollouts. As most of the SAP systems are implemented globally, the risks are high. Therefore the companies, who are involved in SAP implementation should take certain steps to mitigate the risks involved in it.
While planning for SAP implementation, the planning must start with a strategic view. The strategic planning includes identification of the benefits that an organization can get from SAP ERP systems, which can be profit, reduction of cost and better productivity. Then the benefits should be identified for each functional department, including an analysis about the human resources and the tools that are essential for these departments to operate smoothly. Finally, the planning analyst should determine the size of the team that will be required for SAP ERP implementation.
When we analyze the benefits of ERP implementation, we find that there are mainly three types of benefits, which are mainly internal ones. Internal processes are those processes that are done away from the workstations of employees. These internal processes contribute directly to the value creation process of the company and have direct impact on the bottom-line. One of the largest benefits of ERP implementation is the fact that it helps to eliminate the wastes. Other types of benefits are that they help to improve the efficiency of the processes, better integrate the data, reduce the cost of ownership of the information system, enhance the productivity of the workforce and increase the knowledge of the team members.
The implementation process should include a series of activities such as the planning, implementation, evaluation and maintenance. All these activities should be continuous in nature and should not stop because of some unexpected reason. The planning is usually done before the implementation process starts and this provides an opportunity for the management to strategize and deal with the problems that might arise during the process. This is the first step towards the benefits of ERP implementation.
Once the implementation process is over and every business is ready to use the ERP software solutions, the next step is the evaluation. This is the second step and might take a lot of time. This evaluation will involve testing the systems to identify any possible flaws that might appear after the software has been installed. After the testing is complete, the solutions should be thoroughly tried by various business departments and their employees to check the performance.