1. Why Change?
“The art of progress is to preserve order amid change and to preserve change amid order.”
-- Alfred North Whitehead (1861-1947)
Implementing any new software in an organization requires massive effort – not just in building the software, but in changing the behaviours of the organization to adopt the new software. In all cases, the potential rewards far outweigh the significant effort required.
To help your organization assess the change required, we request that your senior executives respond to the following questions:
What are the keys to success in your industry? What are your current competitive pressures?
- Do your customers require customization of your product line? Is mass customization part of your manufacturing strategy?
- How long does it take to train your sales staff? Are there complex technical elements in selling your product?
- Do you have the need to offer new products or make product changes, and have the information quickly distributed to the marketplace?
- Do you have a timeline in mind? Is there any reason for urgency?
2. Who’s the team?
“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.... ”
-- John Quincy Adams (1767-1848)
There are many pieces of the puzzle to make any successful systems implementation project possible. It starts with a steering committee, with a strong mandate and a clear vision of the future. At the center of the action is a project leader with an abundance of energy, the glue that binds the project, the leader that inspires the team. Even more important are the many team members who contribute great efforts that move the project forward.
- Is there a clear unified vision? If so what is that vision?
- Has the steering committee been identified? Does this committee have members with the mandate for change?
- Has the project leader been identified? Does this project leader command the respect of key knowledge users in throughout the organization?
- Have you identified key user representatives from key departments such as Marketing, Customer Service, Engineering, Information Technolgoy, and Sales?
- Have you identified the owners of data? Are these experts also computer savvy?
- Do you have an adaptive team, capable of learning new concepts quickly?
3. What do you need?
"The only man who behaves sensibly is my tailor; he takes my measure anew every time he sees me, whilst all the rest go on with their old measurements, and expect them to fit me."
-- George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950)
A successful software implementation requires the collaboration of business process owners, business process consultants, and software implementation experts.
- Do you have a large volumes of data? Or do you have very complex data? Or both?
- Is it a major effort to keep data up-to-date?
- Can you provide samples of your current system or process and other sales training material or customer service training material?
- Have you attempted this process before? What were the results, and what were the lessons learned?
- Do you have an ERP system? MRP system? CRM system? Other system that holds your data?
4. Are you ready?
"We must learn to tailor our concepts to fit reality, instead of trying to stuff reality into our concepts." Victor Daniels
A successful software implementation requires a partnership approach, from inception to completion. Our team at Konverge has decades of experience in software development and systems integration. We understand that it’s more about the people than the technology. We bring more than the software product. We bring the process to make it happen.
- Where does your data currently reside? Is it in Excel spreadsheets, or database?
- Do you have an existing system or process that you are trying to replace? If so, what platform is it running on? What language was the source code written?
- What is the quality of your current data? Do you have a process in place to ensure data quality? Do you have a methodology for your product data?
- How much change is required in the process for your data? Do you anticipate minor streamlining of your processes, or reinventing major processes?
- Are you comparing vendors based on feature checklists, or professional services capabilities?
- Are you committed to the change, regardless of the anticipated challenges?