Recovering from an ERP failure
As an example, key functional areas needing improved processes were formulation tracking and shelf life management, planning and scheduling as well as tracking aerospace, military and environmental requirements. Instead of focusing on fully documenting and mapping the current and future state in these functional areas, the team jumped directly to vendor demos without a clear vision of how a new ERP system would add value.
As one of the managers noted, the project got “lost in the weeds” in features and functions without a clear sense of the correct path to business performance improvements. As he so aptly noted, “we didn’t know what we didn’t know.”
Fortunately, they did not make any purchase nor did they get anywhere near ERP implementation, since they realized early on that they didn’t know how to go about the process of selection.
A focus on business transformation
For this coatings processor, it was critical that the project recovery focus on business transformation as opposed to simply looking at ERP systems.
Our team led the organization with an overall goal of leveraging enterprise technology to achieve business process transformation.
We helped create a vision of the future state from the current state and helped define the business value for the project. We were able to pull multiple functions together into a single discussion and had multiple divisions speaking to the same solution: something they said had never happened before.
The ERP consultant team focused on business process mapping in key functional areas, such as formulation tracking and shelf life management, tracking aerospace, military and environmental mandates, planning and scheduling and other areas which needed streamlining and reducing wasted effort.
This more strategic approached helped alleviate the shortcomings of the past. It also established alignment of expectations with management, improved the efficiency of the team, eliminated process waste, and reduced the time to benefit for the project.