Selecting a project team for your Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) implementation is all too often done on the basis of job role, rather than who is best for the project. What actually makes a good ERP team player? In my opinion there are four requirements: competency, skill, knowledge, and position – in that order.
Whether you call them RFIs, RFPs, RFQs* or some other acronym, and whether you are a vendor or a customer, those three letters conjure up the same impression in many minds – pages and pages of detailed questions about a software product’s functionality, which takes weeks to create, days to respond, and weeks again to review.
Ownership of an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system is much more than the signing of a contract at the time of purchase. In order to deliver value it must be the consequence of a long term strategy of ownership, and that means a long term commitment to data integrity, solution design and education.
Imagine walking into an Architect’s office; he asks you two questions:
- How big is your family?
- What type of family are you?
You answer and he says: “Yes, I specialize in your type of family and fully understand your requirements. In fact, I have the perfect house for you.”
When I first saw Steven Spielberg’s masterpiece, ET – The Extra-Terrestrial, I was fascinated by its simple yet profound storyline. ET, an alien of sorts, ends up alone on Planet Earth when his fellow aliens accidentally leave him behind after a visit in their space ship. Unlike the children in the story, the adults are obsessed with the order, structures and habits they perceive as ‘normal’ and become his worst enemies, hell-bent on destroying him. Meanwhile, all ET wants to do is “phone home” for his friends to come and fetch him from the inhospitable planet.
Every year, ballet companies all over the world revive The Nutcracker; the classical fairy tale set to the music of Tchaikovsky, drawing young and old to theatres and dazzling them for hours with its beauty, grace and captivating story line. Here the choreographer weaves together some of the most beautiful dances ever conceived to produce endless sequences of sheer ballet fantasy.
I have a friend who works at a large home improvement retailer. He often tells me stories about customers who buy expensive and sophisticated tools, yet have no DIY experience or knowledge on how best to use them.
Often these customers come back a few days later, hoping to return the tools because they “are not working” when in fact, there is nothing wrong with them; they are just not being used properly. One customer, for example, returned an expensive “defective” chainsaw. The problem was that he never bothered to read the manual, which instructed mixing lubricant oil into the petrol. As a consequence the chainsaw’s motor was permanently damaged.