Factors to consider for change management during ERP Implementation
Implementation of an ERP system necessitates a broad-based organizational and behavioral change of employees. This is far more disruptive in nature instead of being a small incremental change. Having a solid change management and training program deals with the process of managing such transitions and encompasses all major tentacles of the organization.
Effective change management program is deeply interconnected with risk management. It helps to minimize failure points and avoid unpleasant surprises during ERP implementation and post-implementation phases.
When devising the ERP change management program, keep these six change-management tips in mind and ensure these aspects are taken care of.
Start at the top of the pyramid
All eyes turn towards the leadership team for strength, support, and direction during transition periods. The leaders themselves must embrace the new systems and processes first, both to motivate and also to challenge the rest of the organization adapting to the new environment. Without the buy-in of the Leadership team for the digital transformation using new software tools and best practices, one cannot enforce and derive results from downstream employees.
Identify / Involve Influencers
When business transformation programs such as ERP implementation happens, they affect almost all layers of the organization. There shall be dedicated plans for identifying, training and motivating influencers throughout the company so that the new ERP system acceptance “cascades” through the organization.
Structure the Communication
One of the functions of change management is the communication of scope, purpose, and progress of the ERP project at regular intervals. This may be in the form of flex boards, newsletters, CEO messages, in-house magazines etc. The messages should include the current status of the project, expected Go Live dates, and individual/group achievements.
Personal Win Factors
You can outline your plan for forwarding growth for each of the employees. Doing so can help them embrace and adopt change by learning and building personal competencies. Highly visible recognition, surprise gifts, and rewards can be used as motivational aspects for embracing change.
Address the anxiety of “How will it Affect Me?”
Any significant transformation such as ERP creates “people issues”. The biggest benefit of such transformation programs for employees are the training and development opportunities that usually accompany change. Businesses that embark on transformation invariably provide workshops, training and development programs. This is to help employees cope with the new requirements and reduce unnecessary anxiety.
Watch out for Saboteurs
Your chances of getting 100% of your employees completely on board can be slim. If you allow destructive attitudes to take root and flourish, you may end up with a small contingent of employees who are determined to make the transition fail. Counsel such employees and motivate them with special training programs and workshops.
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