Years of experience in implementing ERPs across multiple verticals have taught implementation partners the value of a comprehensive discovery phase – they make implementing ERP simpler. Why? Statistics tell us that 75% of all ERP implementations fail and a primary reason for failure is not knowing exactly what you will get before you start your ERP implementation. The Discovery study sets out to correct just that and tell you exactly what you are getting, before you get started.
The Discovery study or pre-fit study aims to create a detailed system design requirement and identify potential gaps between operational realities and management expectations, whilst giving the customer an understanding of the changes that will occur, prior to an implementation. Simply put it’s a reality check of what a business can expect before taking the ERP dive.
The decision to go ahead with a new ERP system or replacement, represents significant investments – and an understanding of how to get the best out of the investment is key at the outset. The Discovery study is a fundamental first step in understanding a customers’ business needs, expectations, anticipated benefits and any constraints within which the solution must fit.
At the end of a Discovery study a complete and accurate design of the system is produced, and any specific automation or integration services are suggested to ensure the best fit for the client. Having a detailed design also helps detail cost and time estimates, which are approximately 90% accurate. This addresses two other key reasons for ERP implementation failures, primarily extensions to timelines and unrealistic budgets.
Here are a few critical items we have been able to identify through our customers’ Discovery studies over the years. Discovery studies help to;
Improve Business Processes: Provide an in-depth understanding of operations at a granular level – most of what may not be seen by senior management. A typical discovery study aims to collate all this information by providing management with a view of what processes will change and what are the best practices. During a Discovery study, we define several areas that would offer a customer the opportunity to improve their business and becoming more competitive and profitable.
Ensure that you Don’t Compromise the Customer’s Edge: While we aim to work towards best practices, many customers have their own ‘secret sauce’ – something that makes them the preferred vendor or gives them an edge over competition. The Discovery study helps the implementation team navigate in the best way to ensure that the processes that give them an edge are retained through the implementation.
Enhance Efficiency: Often what a Discovery study brings to light is the ability to reduce manual processes and improve efficiency. This in turn will help reduce operational cost.
Knowing the customers operating requirements will help us always detail specific functionality which would greatly enhance efficiency.
Identify KPIs: Identify the KPIs that will be used to measure the success of the implementation from day one. Go beyond a simple ‘save costs’ KPI and have more defined and tangible KPIs like “Save inventory holding costs by X% by improving stock holding at the warehouse” or “reduce shipping costs by Y % by advance planning of material and manufacturing requirements.”
Ascertain Potential Cost of Implementation More Accurately: With a detailed Discovery study, the estimated cost of the scope, project timelines, integration requirements, different plug-ins etc. will be more accurate. This would ensure that the customer and implementation partner have much more certainty about the required investment.
For a Discovery study to be successful, the customer must ensure that the right people are involved from the business. ERP implementations are not IT events. They are opportunities to change business paradigms leveraging technology, so key business users and leaders need to be involved.
From our experience, Discovery studies enable both implementation partners and customers to develop a common understanding of project scope, system design, key deliverables, resource requirements and financial investment to ensure that a potential ERP implementation is a success.
From insights to thought-leadershipView More
Sustainability and Fashion: What’s the score?
Continuing our two-part blog we delve into how technology can be a key enabler and driver of helping fashion brands improve their sustainability and transparency efforts. It further details the concept of a sustainability score and how it can be incorporated into systems such as PLM to provide visibility and assist with a company's sustainability initiatives.
Sustainability in Fashion: A pandemical wake-up call
In this two-part blog post, we explore the pressures the fashion industry is facing today: supply chain transparency, sustainability, ethical manufacturing, and conscious consumers demanding eco-friendly clothing, and furthermore reveal what businesses can do to increase visibility and how technology can help alleviate some of these concerns.
Realizing HR functions in a virtual workplace
2020 has challenged us to change the way we work and engage. Read how Fortude has adapted and optimized its people practice collaboration, and service delivery methodology to face the new normal, in our latest blog post written by Oshana Dias, Global SVP - Human Resources, Fortude.
Infor Factory Track: A great companion to M3/CloudSuite
Infor Factory Track bridges the gap between shop floor operations & M3/CloudSuite ERP by enabling manufacturing automation, warehouse mobility, traceability, & time and labor tracking. Read how it can deliver competitive advantage for your business.
Boost Infor CloudSuite’s order capturing efficiency with Fortude Customer Order Manager
From placing a customer order to delivering goods, having robust COM processes ensure a strong bottom line, positive impact to the cash flow, and increased customer satisfaction. Customer order placement—the head of the COM process—is a critical step. At this point, the customer service representatives should have the visibility to information such as inventory availability and the agility to complete order placements fast. Inability to ensure information accuracy at this level can cause issues when allocating, picking, and shipping goods. This blog post explains the means through which Fortude Customer Order Manager can streamline the customer order management in your Infor M3 or CloudSuite ERP solutions.