* This article is part of a White Paper called “5 Challenges about Getting Started with Infor ERP and How to Overcome Them to Raise ROI.”
Even though the obstacles in the path of smooth Infor ERP implementation are real and pressing, the solutions are practical and can be easily incorporated into the deployment and post deployment strategies of most business ventures.
The key to solving the problems is to focus on employee engagement, knowledge retention and performance support.
Ongoing Education for Critical Momentum – Infor
ERP applications at the end of the day come with challenges and benefits similar to most of their SaaS counterparts. Since they are feature rich, flexible, extensible and scalable, huge ROI can be realized from their enterprise wide adoption.
The primary roadblock in case of most ventures is resistance. ERP is the back-bone of an organization and the management as well as the employees suffer from psychological blocks around the concept of entrusting a vendor with sensitive data and insider’s knowledge about business processes.
In order to eliminate doubts and fears and to equip users with the confidence that they can in fact manipulate the features and plug-ins to serve their needs and tackle small glitches by themselves, ongoing education is imperative.
Not only does this provision reduce the overwhelm which results from long drawn out training sessions with low knowledge retention rates, it is also less expensive and fits easily into the budget of start-ups and Fortune 1000 companies alike.
In fact platforms like EPAK allow companies to create training material, documentation and support files for users in-house, cutting down on training costs and allowing the value realization to be much more permanent.
Phased Rollout for Easier Implementation and Adoption
The big-bang approach to the rollout of an enterprise solution is an antiquated notion.
With SaaS models, the phased roll out is an excellent idea. Infor systems are generally flexible and thus end up accepting integrations from different domains of the business. As a result, a phased rollout is the only logical choice to prevent complications from arising simultaneously across the enterprise.
In this kind of deployment, test servers with some of the most critical configurations, integrations and features of the final system are created in order to check the ability of the set-up to work smoothly.
Once the results are positive, small batches of technically savvy and competent users from different departments are shifted to the new system to acclimatize them to the interfaces and workflows.
These employees become evangelists of the software. They not only point out user experience bugs and glitches, they also help their peers embrace the platform and achieve increased productivity with its provisions.
Leveraging the Knowledge and Opinion of the Whole Team for Higher Adoption
Even before the actual implementation starts, focus groups should be created comprising of key team members from the different groups that will be using the ERP solution.
Since choosing modules which will actually boost ROI and keep the interface uncluttered is a major challenge for most businesses, the opinion and inputs of users is important. This is also a great time to discuss integrations and Big Data strategy.
If all the employees are well aware of why certain features are included in the ERP package and the connections which they will need to deal with acceptance of the ‘new’ and the ‘unused’ becomes easier.
Users can be prepped beforehand and are ready to incorporate the SaaS ERP system into their work life.
Continuous Performance Evaluation and Incentives
Despite best efforts by the technical team and the ERP managers to keep users prepped and educated, adoption has to be monitored to be optimized. Companies which boast excellent ROI always evaluate the progress of their employees in terms of getting familiar with and using essential ERP features.
It is a good idea to share success stories of competitors who have achieved a lot with venture wide adoption and set a good example with a topdown approach wherein the management actively leverages the ERP and paves the way for employee compliance.
Community Support and Collaboration
The death knell for many on-premise ERP solutions has been the inability to provide collaboration between users.
Infor however has an inbuilt collaboration and support platform as a part of the Infor 10X features suite. It is called Ming.le. It works well for social interactions, contextual analytics and improvement of business processes. With Ming.le, employees can seek assistance from their own peers in making the most of ERP features.
Evangelists of the system can also act as ‘influencers’ sharing new ideas and ways
to boost ROI with their ‘followers’.
Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) to the Rescue
Infor 10X also offers extremely robust and easy to mobile applications so that employees can access the system with their phones and tablets. BYOD is revolutionizing work culture, giving users an unprecedented familiarity with enterprise solutions.
The more time employees spend manipulating a platform through their own devices, the more accountability they develop for the technology and are willing to take their association beyond adoption to innovation.
Onscreen Contextual Guidance
Visual guidance is a part of the ongoing education discussed above, but is extremely important in its own right.
Employees learn how to use a tool approximately 60 times faster if they assimilate images instead of text. Onscreen guidance in the form of personalized demos and interactive tips kick the experience a notch higher.
A platform like WalkMe is capable of providing a permanent repository of demonstrations or Walk-Thrus which address specific queries and concerns of employees. For example, if a particular Infor feature has been customized to accommodate an existing business workflow, it may no longer be simple and intuitive to use.
A Walk-Thru called upon by using Widgets is a life-saver, allowing the user to view a highly tailored demo as many times as is needed to master the customized feature completely.
If followed diligently, these solutions mitigate the abruptness of the changes introduced by the SaaS model making software management easier and more effective.
This article is part of a White Paper called “5 Challenges about Getting Started with Infor ERP and How to Overcome Them to Raise ROI.” Fill the form below to claim your FREE copy!
The White Paper covers a range of topics including:
Chapter 1: Infor ERP: Cloudsuite, Growth and Value Delivered to Business.
Chapter 2: Top 5 Challenges: Implementing, Boosting Adoption and ROI of Infor Cloud ERP.
Chapter 3: 7 Practical Solutions to Infor ERP Implementation and Adoption Challenges.
Chapter 4: A Checklist of Factors Ensuring Infor ERP Implementation Success.