consultancy
Information Lifecycle Management

Jose Luis Jahuey (Mexico) - Get Extraordinary Results from your Consultancy Team

During an ERP implementation, it is important to know how to maximize the results of the consultancy team. Some key points that should help:

1. Meet the Consultant Profile Beyond the technical capabilities of a consultant, it is also important to consider their personal skills. To become a change agent the consultant needs to be both respected and recognized by clients for characteristics such as: empathy, discipline, organization skills, ability to understand and frustration handling. A consultant also needs to be observant, very analytic, a motivator, and above all, he or she must be committed to the objective and with the internal team.

2. Clarify Expectations When a project starts, the team as a whole-the company's internal staff and consultants-should chase from the beginning the same objective: to conclude the implementation efficiently and to help the company to operate with excellence. If any member of the team begins without clear expectations, this complicates the relationship. In a project it is all about following a specific goal, with certain quality characteristics (deliverables) completed in a specified timeline with an estimated budget.

3. Know What Not to Expect You should not expect a consultant to instantly have every answer to your questions. The main role of a consultant is to identify and analyze change opportunities, applying innovative techniques or processes to drive tangible and quantifiable benefits in the organization, and these takes time often.

4. Work as a Team to Obtain Solid Results It is important to promote the integration of the project team. In the particular case of an ERP implementation, the consultant must act as a guide, a leader for the internal team that drives an effective knowledge transmission to educate internal "consultants" from the customer internal team. Remember, communication between all team members is key.

5. Understand the External Factors The lack of active commitment of senior management; false expectations related to return on investment (ROI); a poor alignment between the new roles, procedures, technologies and human resources (change management); insufficient training and the tendency to meet the company requirements based on customizations could have a strong impact on the results of the implementation. Your software provider and its consultancy team certainly will give you valuable recommendations to move forward and create the most adequate strategy for your company.

By Jose Luis Jahuey, Auros Business Consultancy/Epicor Software 

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