Have you ever read the stories about implementations gone wrong, or how a company upgraded an existing system without A) checking with anyone beforehand or B) telling everyone afterward?
One example is that an upgrade is completed without informing everyone in the office until the next morning, when something isn’t working properly. Another example would be someone from a Marketing Department advertising that they’re running a promotion for a product, but perhaps the promotion wasn’t added to the ERP system, resulting in an emergency fire to put out. With clear communication, marketing would send messages to to the appropriate personnel to help prevent unplanned work and avoid unhappy customers.
Communication can even help you avoid security problems, such as these. One process that might help is to appoint a team that reviews and approves any changes before they are made. This team discusses the change, its implications, and any other aspects of the business to prepare for or delay it. Another helpful tool is IT monitoring software, which alerts critical personnel, whether internal staff or an external IT service, when there is a concern.
When planning a significant system change, it’s also important that you work hand-in-hand with your vendor’s Implementation Team (if applicable) to keep those lines of communication open to help ensure success. Our white paper, 10 Steps to a Successful Implementation, has great advice for clearly communicating change to everyone involved, as well as everyone who will be affected by the change. This advice can easily be tailored to large projects or small.
Remember to notify everyone of the change, and provide training and technical support as appropriate. This will help make sure the system is in the hands of qualified users.
Change doesn’t have to be painful, especially when it’s needed to help improve your system. Keeping sight of priorities, staying organized, and clear communication are key elements for successfully growing your business. We’d enjoy hearing any additional suggestions that you’ve found to be successful. Please leave your comments below.