There are 7 phases that make up an ERP implementation project: Analysis, Discovery and Planning, Design, Development, Testing, Deployment, and Ongoing Support. Though this is an iterative process, there will be a tendency for phases to overlap, and for movement back and forth between phases.
With our team having around 15 years of experience in using financial software and ERP implementations, I have outlined the process that we use with our customers as a series of 7 articles. See the linked steps below for a more in-depth look at each phase.
We hope that the articles linked below can serve as a valuable resource to you and your organization when exploring ERP projects as well as other enterprise systems.
Axcell Model “MIS Implementation Plan”
This first phase begins with analyzing business processes for the company in relation to finance and accounting functions, business model, and integration with other divisions, i.e. HR, Sales, Marketing, and supply chain, etc… We work hand in hand with all departments to bring best in class process that is reflected on the ground with the implemented software application.
During this phase, we start drafting accurately the business processes as they are currently. In light of the analysis report from phase one and the business processes currently followed, we understand the pain points. Upon this outcome, we develop enhancement objectives for the new application. In addition to that, we recommend the most suitable software to be implemented.
How the enterprise-wide system look like and how will it be used in the organization?
In the ERP Design phase, the project team from selected software vendors, and our finance experts will be working out the various configurations for the new system, defining roles, and documenting standard procedures.
The purpose of the development phase is to prepare the entire system for going live. This includes activities such as completing any necessary customizations, user training, and importing data. Data Importing is very crucial to be accurate opening balances, therefore we conduct internal audit as part of the development phase of accounting transactions by sampling to make sure that data are accurate.
Testing, Recruitment & Training
Is the system’s functionality aligning with the set requirements for the project?
The Testing, Recruitment and Development phases will often overlap, as the implementation and project teams jump between the two – constantly fine-tuning the configuration. By the end of this phase, project team members will be comfortable doing their jobs in the new system. This is the final step before diving into the live system. We make sure that the team selected/recruited & trained is up to the standards in relation to accounting knowledge and finance experience.
The project team and our finance experts will assess the situation and make the final go or no-go decision. Prior to going live, the final data will be loaded and validated. The project team will train other employees who will then start working in the new system, parallel with the old system for one month at least, then completely stop using the old one.
Once the ERP system has gone live, the purpose of the project team will shift. Over time, as the way the users work within the system evolves, adjustments and changes to the system configuration may be needed. We will work together with the project team from the software provider to make sure all clients’ needs are met timely, and that nothing is over demanded from users that might cost the client unnecessarily.