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An Overview of ERP Software Implementation

An Overview of ERP Software Implementation

ERP – Enterprise Resource Planning. The ERP software helps businesses in the complete business process. The ERP software has many advantages and the solutions are available for various industries whether it is retail, manufacturing, aerospace & defence, automotive, chemical, energy, hi tech electronics or textile. It help you in taking better decisions and increase the working efficiency.

With the help of using latest technologies and new procedures there are plenty of organizations who are working with this system in order to increase their growth rate. In order to get return on investments the companies need to achieve their targets within time. Thus, the information provided by the Enterprise Resource Planning actually helps the management to take better actions as well as decisions. To implement this software, careful planning must be done. When this is done, this system provides with business benefits and help in the improvement of the productivity. The business objectives need to be defined first so that an effective solution can be selected accordingly.

Defining the infrastructure is one of the most essential things which also required in order to prevent a misfit of the solution. As the solution has to create from scratch, thus it is highly important to select the right ERP vendor which perfectly fits your budget as well business needs. It is essential to go with the right vendor because the implementation is a complex procedure as it requires lot of planning. And in order to achieve all goals and objectives of this process, one has to establish the communication standards, timelines, budgets, etc.

You have to employ a dedicated team which will work at the development and implementation. And for monitoring the project one has to conduct stress and usability testing of this system with the team members. For the proper ERP software implementation you also need to appoint maintenance and support staff for security and backup procedures. The implementation has to be done in the correct manner in order to get all the benefits and prevent the wastage of resources allotted. A gradual approach is required with the right planning else it may result in a mess. Thus, Enterprise Resource Planning resolves the problems of the organizations by streamlining their internal business process and offering customized solutions as per the requirements.

Holding years of experience in IT sector the writer of this article is an expert of the industry and known the entire process of ERP software implementation .

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A Guide to SAP Project Documentation for your SAP Implementation

A Guide to SAP Project Documentation for your SAP Implementation

To be a successful SAP Project Manager you need to understand the full lifecycle of your SAP implementation, and without prior SAP experience you will not have the benefit of other implementations, this article is a quick guide of SAP Project Documentation that forms the backbone of your SAP implementation. As with all SAP implementations it is based on the well know ASAP methodology (Accelerated SAP), so lets start there.

The basic phases of an SAP implementation start with:
Project Preperation. The documentation that needs to be created during this phase is typically. 1. The Project Plan – This obviously is the starting point for many project managers, but don’t be so eager to get the first release out, wait until all your workshops (re-engineering process flows, or documenting as-is processes) are complete. This will open your eyes to what tasks are required or need more attention for your company. A sample SAP project plan is always a good starting point and build upon that.
You will Also need a Project Charter, most project managers understand the need of a Project Charter, but be sure to base it on the SAP technical people as well as the SME’s and other business users, many SAP people see the project charter as the requirements for that project. It is also important to identify the leadership teams role throughout the project.
During the Project Prep Phase you will also need to define your SAP Landscape, this can be done by your BASIS people, but be clear to them to define the R/3, CRM, BW, SRM landscapes, and make the transport routed clear. Make sure all SAP Business Analysts sign this and fully understand the SAP landscape.
Now it’s time for your Validation team to get to work! They are responsible for the project standards, that is, how do the technical team capture requirements, how do they write the requirements in full, and how do they capture what needs to be configured. Make your validation team design the project standards for:
Trace Matrix Standard – This is the Daddy of all standards, it describes the links from the scope document (requirements list) to the functional design document to the technical design document etc. Use the standard on http://escape9-5.co.uk/asapdocs.html as a starting point if you have not seen one before.
Functional and Technical Design Standard – This describes how the business is to write their requirements in full (after capturing the scope/ requirements). It describes the detail to go to and the general information required for the business analyst to configure. The Technical Design standard, tells the business analyst how to capture the configuration completed. Very similar standards are the Function Specification and Technical Specifications, these are basically the documents for non-configuration requirements, i.e. FRICE objects, thats; forms, reports, interfaces, conversions and enhancements.

So thats Project Prep over! While the validation team are busy writing the project standards, the SAP project team can be running the business workshops to capture TO-BE business processes and requirements, these should all be documented and captured in a scope document. So now your ready for the next phase:

Project Blueprint
The project Blueprint is a description of the TO-BE SAP implementation, broken down into each module it provides detail to the leadership team of what exactly is the SAP project all about. Here’s a good sample of an SAP Blueprint

The next phase is the Realisation Phase
Your SAP team are now busy writing all there technical design documents (following the technical design doc standard of course)! While they are busy, you need to start thinking about the testing requirements, a typical document is known as the Opertational Testing Strategy. It covers the process of testing all the requirements have been setup/ configured as expected and has been tested in production like situations.
You will also need to start, if you haven’t already, you data loading strategy, how exactly are you going to convert your old business data into sap data, things like your supplier names, customers, products etc. This wuld have been thought about in your Project Charter and Project Plan, but the procedure and standards should be clearly defined.

During the next Phase Final Preperation, you need to create a Go Live and support strategy. How exactly are your users going to be supported during and after go-live. How do users request changes to functionality and how do users create authorisation requests.

If you require examples of SAP documentation to aid you, please find them on my website: SAP Project Documentation

If you need SAP advice, or consultancy please visit http://www.escape9-5.co.uk SAP Recruitment

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SharePoint Document Collaboration Via SharePoint Intranets

SharePoint Document Collaboration Via SharePoint Intranets

Custom SharePoint Designs & a well thought out SharePoint Branding effort ensures that prospects, customers, partners and vendors are always encountering the exact same corporate identity on SharePoint Websites, SharePoint Extranets & any SharePoint portals that they might have access to.

Document Collaboration via SharePoint Intranets & SharePoint Extranets

In today’s work environment that’s highly connected, documents created and used by multiple users, editors, and stakeholders are becoming the rule, rather than the exception. If your business needs to ensure easy channels of communication and collaboration between end-users but reduce the responsibility on administration required to support it, a SharePoint Server 2010 implementation is ideal. With the implementation, you achieve the co-authoring functionality of Microsoft Office 2010 with Microsoft Word 2010, Microsoft PowerPoint 2010, as well as Microsoft OneNote 2010 documents on SharePoint Server 2010.

Thanks to co-authoring, collaboration of server-based documents becomes easy and your business overheads, which were earlier linked to traditional document sharing via attachments, decrease. So, if your business needs multiple users to work on the same document, you can now ensure that work is done productively without any user intruding on another’s work or locking the others out. You won’t need any additional server setup to use this functionality as it is the default state for data stored in

share point Server 2010 implementation. What’s more, administrators can manage the sharing and collaboration functionality with the use of same tools and technologies that they have already used to manage SharePoint. This way, not much impact would be there when you decide to use SharePoint 2010.

SharePoint Portals for Project Management

Your business has got a lot of information scattered everywhere in the form of spreadsheets, documents, e-mails, presentations, and more. Most of the data is usually stored on different computers and at different locations, making it difficult to manage the same. However, with the enhanced document and record management capabilities of the SharePoint 2010 implementation, you can now manage your projects and data effectively.

share point 2010 implementation allows users to put related document sets, create business specific workflows, metadata, homepage and archiving processes. So, whether your business need to manage rigid processes like regulatory submissions or deal with informal process management where teams have to merge several file types in same process, you can do all that with SharePoint 2010.

Some other features of SharePoint 2010 that will help you manage your projects include allotment of unique document id to files that make it easy to search them, easy process to rate and add notes to documents, defining rules on a folder for further routing of the document, and usage of metadata by combining structured taxonomies and keywords, among others.

Dashboards & Reports

Thanks to SharePoint 2010, you can create rich, context-driven dashboards that help you to put data and content at a place, and get an overall view of your business performance at all levels. In other words, creating business intelligence dashboards and publishing them is an easy task in share point 2010 environment. You can use the Dashboard Designer, which can be launched directly from the browser, and use it to create Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), reports, scorecards, analytic charts and grids, filters, and dashboards.

Business Process Optimization

SharePoint 2010 has a new service architecture, multi-tenant features, and other improvements that have made it capable of handling larger volumes of content and an increased number of users as compared to its earlier version. You can reduce downtime by using its enhanced recovery and backup utilities as well as its improved support for high-availability features of SQL Server. You can analyze feature usage and find misconfigurations and other problems with the help of improved logging and log analysis tools. The considerably expanded PowerShell interface will help your business handle most administrative procedures, which in turn would encourage standardization and efficiency.

share point consulting firm focused solely on SharePoint and InfoPath technologies. Our expert SharePoint consultants help organizations achieve their financial and business objectives by effective using Sharepoint implementations, SharePoint branding, Sharepoint Intranets

Converge Point is a leading SharePoint consulting firm focused solely on SharePoint and InfoPath technologies. Our expert SharePoint consultants help organizations achieve their financial and business objectives by effective using Sharepoint implementations and SharePoint branding

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ERP software demo for Construction Industry

ERP software demo for Construction Industry

While planning a new enterprise resource planning system, the thing which is really important apart from choosing an application, is its implementation. Every ERP implementation company which embarks on implementation of ERP thinks that implementation must be a success over time and budget. Therefore, it is necessary to think proactively while evaluating systems. There are lots of critical issues which ensure the success of ERP implementation like what is ERP software? It is quite obvious that objectives of implementation are somehow different from business objectives of an organization. ERP is a basic key for the enhancement of resources within a business field. This application is formed by integrating many software modules for improving the overall software efficiency. Delivering perfect accurate results, management of customer relationship, managing human capital etc are the basic advantages of ERP software. There are numerous ERP implementation strategies which are available for proper integration of resource data. Every organization can implement ERP application for performing a specific function. Choosing ERP implementation techniques basically depends on business functions and goals.

ERP puts its concentration on business structure and functions as per the needs. Nowadays demand for ERP is increasing rapidly day by day and that’s why it is the most recommended business promoter in assisting company owners for attaining high position within the global market. Its implementation is done at different stages which include implementation, transformation, design, improvement and stabilization. Testing of the application is done after using it for certain time in order to check for trouble shooters and errors. It mainly targets on business structure and works as per the requirement. At the time of implementation, organizations may feel the requirement to change business processes for meeting the specific business requirements. ERP implementation could be a success with regular follow ups and efficient flow of data throughout the whole life cycle of ERP. These days ERP software demo are also available which could be tested before purchasing the software. It requires sound knowledge to make implementation of ERP a big success. In many cases, ERP implementation has failed when critical decisions could not be made due to absence of prior concern.

ERP has gained high level of popularity in recent years due to its advanced and unique features as well as vital functionalists within an organization. Several organizations have moved to ERP software for enhancing their net productivity and making more benefits. Apart from this, ERP assists in tracking of whole performance within an organization and offers real-time business visibility. It can’t be ignored that its implementation comprises huge cost and requires several years for implementation; therefore prior time should be given in its selection. With the implementation of ERP within an organization, office staffs have to be properly taught to use ERP software. For the implementation of ERP, different modules are implemented on the basis of priority level by ERP Implementation Company. ERP implementation is costlier and therefore it is necessary to have right people and resources right from day first. However, it must be kept in mind that implementing ERP without following the necessary guidelines could result in revenue loss, multiple failures, excess costs, loss of customers etc.

Author Bio:

ERP Software Company offers fully customized erp software solutions for construction and manufacturing industries http://www.acgil.com/products/smart_deals.htm

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CRM Software – Best Buying Tips

CRM Software – Best Buying Tips

Getting right CRM software for any business can be complex and confusing. It’s very important for any business to know which points to be considered and which not while purchasing CRM software. Purchasing customer relationship management (CRM) software can be complex and confusing.  By recognising the key stakeholders, primary business drivers, bottlenecks and critical success factors as well as future plans can impact your CRM software purchase decision that you can most clearly understand and define your requirements.

A cheaper CRM is not always better and the most expensive ones may not have all the features as per your requirement. It’s necessary to find a CRM software provider which suits your requirement and get the maximum out of your purchase.

Performing a comprehensive review:
CRM Solutions integrate an extensive collection of functionality. It is essential to streamline interdepartmental communication, follow the customers from initial lead through end of sale and identifying the prospect of your company that it has and address those business issues most effectively. It’s attractive to expand the focus but doing so could engulf new users and may risk end user adoption.

Making the vendor list and depicting the advantages of your CRM:

The companies providing CRM software solutions are to be analysed and reviewed.  Its history, products features and capabilities are to be considered for getting the right CRM for your business. Instead of prolonged pitch meetings and project estimates, you should focus on vendors that have a reputation for quick rollouts and frequent feature updates.
Look at the future of your business needs and buy a CRM system that will accommodate them, decide on the best methods of how to reach them. Finally when the CRM Solutions are implemented you must be sure that you set your goals or you will never know if you are on right track or not.

Bargains the superlative Deal
The best possible deal for your company can be made based on the following points:

* Identify the standard discounts and use the discounted price to begin with the negotiation.

* Continue evaluating other solutions. And avoid being carried away by free stuff. Unless it suits your requirement don’t get carried away by the bait.

* Negotiate for reduced implementation, consulting, and maintenance costs. Or, try to get free training or upgrades into the deal.

Companies opting for hosted CRM software can negotiate lower monthly fees in exchange for longer contract terms.

 

CRM Solution Potential
Apart from of the size of a company, doing a thorough assessment of CRM solutions available is critical to the ultimate success of the business. It is significant to be confident the CRM solution will meet all of the businesses current needs, it is equally important to be sure it can grow with future needs. Different departments will have different needs and having a user interface designed around those needs can make it a much more effective solution for each department. Ensuring that the business needs will be fully met by a CRM solution is only part of the equation. Making sure it falls within budget and can be maintained efficiently and at reasonable cost will be critical to the overall health of the business long term.

Employee involvement in the adoption process
Employees need to be engaged in the implementation process and encourage them for feedback. The success of your new CRM software lies in user adoption. Involve your sales, marketing, and support staff at every step of your project, so that their needs are heard and addressed from the outset. Once they are comfortable with the software it will help to drive faster and better result throughout the organization.

Celebrating result

You should celebrate each milestone that your company achieved after the CRM implementation. The more buy-in you have from the entire staff, the higher the chances are of your CRM Rollout being successful. Your company need to track results against objectives. Performance management is an ongoing process – key metrics must be analyzed periodically to ensure continued success.

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Why So Many ERP Implementation Projects Fail

Why So Many ERP Implementation Projects Fail

One of the most difficult things for a new company to do is ERP implementation. Yes, implementing enterprise resource planning systems can be one of the most challenging processes a company will ever face and most of them make the same mistakes which lead to the failure of ERP implementation either in the short run or the long run. Now let’s go through some of these common mistakes that most organizations make:

1. Time and resources – A lot of companies underestimate the amount of time and the number of resources required for ERP implementation in their organization. It is very important for a company to figure out exactly what they want from the software as soon as possible so that the scope of work can be defined. This will help them determine the amount of time as well as the number of resources they will require to implement their software correctly.

2. Vendor – Sometimes, selecting the correct vendor is as easy as just going through their website. Don’t just rely on their website though; it is best to meet a few of them in person before making a final decision. The best method of choosing a vendor though is by checking their references. Obviously, a vendor with good references will do a good job.

3. Unrealistic expectations – Before going into ERP implementation, it’s very important for an organization to understand how ERP software’s work. Having unrealistic needs would, more often than not, lead to unnecessary complications which you could do without.

4. Functions and features – Without realizing it, many organizations don’t even utilize all the features of the ERP system they have implemented. They may only be concerned with the module developed for them and forget to check out the other features that ERP software’s have to offer.

5. Training and change management – This is a very important aspect of effective ERP implementation. It’s very important that an organization continuously strives to motivate its staff to understand the processes and systems better and to clear any doubts they may have.

6. Testing environment – When implementing an ERP system it’s very important for a company to have an effective simulated environment for checking the maximum load software can take. Skipping this step may lead to unexpected or unplanned downtime in the future which may prove to be very costly for an organization.

7. IT infrastructure – Not many organizations pay attention to the I.T. support that would be required in order to successfully implement ERP software. Most companies choose to use low cost IT hardware which underperforms. Even though this method does prove to reduce the cost of ERP implementation, it may not allow the organization to derive as much benefit from the software as it would have with the correct IT infrastructure.

Take a note of these points and make sure your organization is not making any of these errors. As long as you can stay away from these mistakes, you should be able to successfully implement ERP software in your organization.

Read about SAP ERP Software Review. Also know How to Select the Right ERP. Read about Oracle ERP Software Review.

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What Are The Benefits Of Hosted CRM

What Are The Benefits Of Hosted CRM

You will find that with hosted CRM that there are a lot of different benefits that go along with it. Many people will ended up getting with a Hosted CRM because they know of the many things that it can do for them and their business.

However, some people are still unaware of how great this can be for you and how you do business. Just make sure that you understand all of the different aspects of it so that you can take full advantage of what a Hosted CRM can do for you.

Initial Cost

When it comes to sales force automation and hosted CRMs you are going to get to enjoy the benefit of a very low initial cost. The software for CRM is something that is very expensive and cost as much as millions of dollars whenever you span the life cycle of the implementations of CRM.

However, the fee to just a yearly subscription for your CRM services is something that is only going to cost a fraction of what you would expect for just the software. Dealing with a hosted CRM is going to allow you to try it out and choose whether or not you want to host online CRM in house. This is something that you should only consider doing if it is technically and economically feasible.

Deployment Cost

There is also a very low cost of deployment that you will not need to worry about. When dealing with a web based CRM, you are not going to have the worry of needing your clients deployed for your backend CRM software. Whenever you have Hosted CRM you are going to have to worry even less about the need of having to deploy any type of backend systems. This is going to save you a lot of time, headaches and most importantly, money.

Implementation

There is an incredibly fast implementation. Whenever you are dealing with the implementation with a hosted CRM you are going to only have to deal with the data migration, initial set up, integration and the configuration. You will find that the ASPs of CRM will normally cover the custom requirements at a price.

When dealing with the cost of implementing the hosted CRM you will find that there is only going to be a shortened implementation from the years or months to even a few weeks. It will all depend on what will work best for you and your company.

Accessibility

Many people find themselves wondering how the accessibility will be whenever they are dealing with a hosted CRM. However, you can have access to your web based CRM from any place as long as you have an internet connection and a web browser.

Information Sharing

With a hosted CRM you will have the benefit of instant information sharing. You will get the information that is put in remotely onto the internet.

This type of information can be transmitted all the way back to CRM backend. This is where you will get your instant information when it comes to sharing all of your locations and organizational lines.

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Annual Maintenance Cost or AMC for ERP Packages

Annual Maintenance Cost or AMC for ERP Packages

Enterprise Resource Planning packages should be selected after a proper evaluation for a successful implementation. The cost of an ERP implementation depends on many factors like the software license, resources, hardware required, implementation time, training, testing, customization, maintenance, etc. Some of the indirect costs can vary in every case. Annual maintenance cost for ERP packages is not less but it is important for system checks and upgrades. Companies need to negotiate the annual maintenance costs by analyzing the future maintenance needs and put a price on it accordingly. The future requirements are based on historical and business data. A third party can get expensive in long term. To reduce the IT expense, one does not have to resort to cutting the expense on annual maintenance cost for ERP packages. Annual maintenance is required as the companies only use about 80% of the features of the software.

Annual maintenance is needed as the servers get outdates and the database gets old. There are newer operating systems used and the new version aid in updating certain issues. Also the new versions will need support and upgrades in future. Sometimes the applications may not work in the right manner and new systems may be required. Rather than going in for expensive new system, annual maintenance for ERP packages would be preferable. The annual maintenance cost for ERP packages normally is about twenty percent and very few take more than that. This can be negotiated by the company and set a price in advance. If the costs increase in future, this method may be advantageous. The costs also depends on the number of users as some vendors may charge for new users added and others may charge according to the number of transactions.

Many companies are looking to save money and so think of cutting down costs like the annual maintenance cost for ERP packages. But continuing the ERP operations without the support depends on the system. If the system is not up to date with the market versions, it may affect the business when the customer numbers grow and the demands grow. New requirements may need new technology and updates. To keep up with the pace of the growing needs and changes, upgrades are necessary. Old and outdated systems would not be able to cope up with the changes and demands. This might result in failure of the system and lead to implementation of a new system which would be a costly affair. Therefore annual maintenance cost for ERP packages should be considered seriously. The quality of maintenance and development is also important.

The Enterprise Resource Planning packages are normally customized to fit the organization and therefore the changes made should also be done accordingly. All measures should be taken to ensure good quality services when one pays high annual maintenance cost for ERP packages. If you negotiate the costs, make sure the vendor does not cut down on the quality of the services. It is better to find an ERP provider who offers updates and services at reasonable maintenance costs.

Read about Types of ERP. Also know What is ERP System. Read information about SAP R/3 Architecture.

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ERP Implementation – Some Important Tips

ERP Implementation – Some Important Tips

ERP software can be described as a complete business solution for a company. The one and only goal of an Enterprise Resource Planing application is to incorporate all the systems of entering data and procedures, as related to the business processes of a company. These days every small, medium and large-sized companies are working towards increasing their existence in international market. Today, many business activities have been improved by applying software like, ERP that contains resource planning, control, inventory, management, and functional management.

Nevertheless, the next most significant action which is becoming very popular these days is ERP integration. It is next very essential phase if you are looking forward to having a full conversion. This process has become a major phase when company try to apply using Enterprise Resource Planning system programs, as single application would not be able to perform, if they are not incorporated properly.

Today ERP implementation is a significant resource for any companies and the complexes of the projects are next primary features that impacts the cost of implementations. Though different companies may implement same system in different circumstances and the same company may incorporate different software, there are some common aspects for effective mplementation despite the Enterprise Resource Planning techniques they apply or the strategies they use. A well measured execution is the only answer to the achievements of the this software. Some of the effective steps for ERP implementation are: -Project Planning: ERP execution mainly starts with project planning. Project planning includes determining project objectives, recognizing organization requirements, and calculating the work costs. -Set requirements: For obtaining appropriate outputs of an ERP software, an organization has to set the right requirements with due purposes so that it gets liable solution of the same. -Structural Design: This is the next most vital phase and should be considered very seriously. You should note that an advanced level architectural design concentrating on various aspects. -Data Accumulation: Data or information is one of the significant driving aspects of development for any business. The success of the ERP implementation extremely relies on moving the functional data and providing it to the forefront. Moreover to this, all data sections should be very carefully analyzed and then structured into excel spreadsheets. A category method must be recognized and the data must be brought into the ERP program accordingly. -Testing: After successful implementation of ERP, it is essential that the system execution team analyze all the functions to further analyze that all information are accurate and functioning properly. Function testing must be conducted with actual data to assure that the techniques will work properly. -Evaluation of software: Lastly, create a structured assessment plan which concentrates on the objectives that were set in the planning phase. A post-implementation evaluation should be done after the ERP system has been up.

Today, ERP software is as crucial to the requirements of a business. An organization cannot run smoothly without having a well-designed and properly managed ERP system. The software is a need of all modern-day companies, regardless of the size, area of features and its objectives.

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