As experienced and trusted advisers on myriad ERP projects, we have never walked away from a project . Working with you from the outset, we ensure:
It’s never too late to bring us in: if your project is going off-piste, we will bridge that gap!
Mind the gap
As key programme stakeholder, whether you are CIO, CTO, Project Manager or Project Director, assess how your business views the project with two key questions:
1. What will this change really do for us?
2. How will it actually improve our business?
Unsurprisingly, not all stakeholders may be aligned. We usually encounter three streams of thought:
Group 1: “Let’s transfer systems to upgraded versions, or something completely new, and optimise our processes.” (Those driven to continually innovate and improve.)
Group 2: “Let’s keep what we had before by lifting and shifting.” (Those who don’t like change.) This approach will only move your current solution onto a new platform.
Group 3: The ‘moot’ group – often overshadowed by egos or ‘classroom bullies’. Their responses and expectations could be effective drivers for adoption and change. Ignore them and they could inspire discontent within your workforce.
If you suspect that the foundations of an expectation gap exist, here are five essential tips to avoid or bridge it:
1. The crucial role of change management
Make sure you have a solid and comprehensive plan to transform and adapt your business at each project stage. Include a clear risk profile and build a risk register - with defined actions to mitigate risks. This will drive further optimisation and help achieve your business case:
Compile an impact assessment
Use timely, well-targeted and effective communication throughout the project.
Reduce internal resistance with innovative, short, sharp comms, emphasising the benefits from an individual perspective.
Give everyone space to voice concerns, particularly those less receptive to change.
Ensure total visibility of goals and project timeline.
Involve key stakeholders at every stage
What data will be migrated
How data will be migrated
The biggest - and possibly most avoidable - gap forms if the final result comes as a surprise to your broader user audience. There is nothing worse at the end of a long and arduous project than a confused and disappointed chorus of “This is not what we expected..!”
It is therefore crucial to involve all stakeholders and key user groups during the testing phases. Their invaluable insight will better ensure a satisfactory final project outcome.
Your ERP project alone will not change your world: it will live or die on how well it is used and if its potential is fully realised. You will only maximise return on your investment if the people using it really know what they’re doing. If users are only aware of 50% of its functionality, you will only get 50% of your money’s worth.
The solution is an effective and comprehensive firmwide training programme. Delaware’s Training Academy develops all new analysts joining us, providing industry-, process- and technology-specific training. Use our prebuilt programmes and content to add real value to, and assure the greater success of, your project.
4. Business representation from key stakeholders
Your ERP project must have representation and input from all the right stakeholders. By ‘right’ we mean your ‘star’ employees - those you can’t afford to take away from their day job - at the right levels, across the right functions.
Their leadership and sponsorship will help drive the project and their insight and input into design and build should also help you avoid an expectation gap: expert stakeholder input should help you ensure the project delivers the improvements you have promised.
Delaware: not just helping you avoid or bridge gaps…
We invest in building and nurturing strong organisational, professional and personal relationships - which is why most of our clients have been customers for years.
We are unique in the advisory space because of the sheer number of our experts focusing on a project management perspective across myriad industry sectors, including oil and gas, utilities (water, gas, power), manufacturing and aerospace and defence.
Get precisely the experience and expertise you need along the entire lifecycle of your projects, large or small. And avoid that gap!
For further details on how we will help you successfully avoid expectation gaps - or manage any other aspect of your ERP project - contact Kevin Heard or book a chat today.