Many middle market executives and business owners are disappointed in results achieved from their investments in business applications such as ERP, CRM and Analytics. Many have even given up hope and decided not to upgrade or enhance their existing systems and simply maintain status quo, perhaps even knowingly asking their employees to put in longer hours, add more bodies or manual processes to address needs rather than investing in enhancing their current applications.
How did they get there? How did all such high excitements fizzle into disappointments? Based on many evaluations and interventions, the following five elements seem to be common denominators in most failed and near-failed project efforts:
Not doing their homework – How was the system selected? Were there sufficient reviews of your needs, current and planned, and a systematic approach mapping your needs and capabilities to various potential solutions?
Not having adequate resources and processes – Who is leading the charge during selection and implementation? Do we have an empowered project team in place that is held accountable for project success? Are executives properly involved in the decision making process?
Not willing to change - Are we willing to change some of our ways to take advantage of newly selected solutions capabilities or are we forcing the system to adhere to our old way of doing things?
Not setting up realistic expectations – Are we trying to implement too many modules in record time? Are we expecting the new solution to cure all our existing ills?
Not cutting through the sales fluff – Have we vetted out the solutions and their sales messages thoroughly or we are so eager to address our needs that we have fallen for the sales pitch?