PYMES, Small or Big Companies, this is real confusion when talking about computer systems, in my country is very usual to associate company size by the software they use, we use to think that only Small Business use Box Software (you can go to Office Depot, buy one and, there you go...) In this profession I had the fortune to meet companies with spectacular incomes and very simple processes; and Small business with very complex processes.
So no matter which client server ERP brand you choose, implement an ERP system in your own infrastructure facilities, usually cost from 50% to 80% of the total project budget, of course without including product life-time expenses.
That's why I will write about my favorite subjects, Cloud Computing, and specifically my favorite ERP, I've become a real fan of this platform, because PYMES and many Small business can afford the use of high-level computing system.
One of the great advantages of Netsuite + CRM is that was created to work in the cloud, that means you pay only what you use, for the time you need, including infrastructure rental; under this kind of arrangement is no longer necessary hire specialists for each component of on-site platform, as well critical mission maintenance contracts. This fact represents the greatest fear that IT colleagues suffer daily, thinking about Cloud computing trends (but that is.. another time topic).
The question is: Is it possible to implement Netsuite ERP in 6 weeks? The answer is “Yes”, a Small or Mid-Range Company with standard processes such as retail or services, can experience an entire ERP implementation in record time.
I'm going to share with you this Netsuite CRM implementation experience, a Business group "Grupo ED" one of the most important 4PL of the country, asked us; This Netsuite system can do what we need? Fortunately improving processes coverage, and functionalities is every day work at Netsuite Headquarters, and at that time the answer was absolutely “yes”.
The purpose of the project was: An strategic business model that allow them to identify and manage valuable customer relationships, and help improve sales effectiveness. CRM model at Grupo ED, had the following components:
- Functionality and complete sales administration. - Time management. - Service and customer support. - Executives KPI's and information management. - Legacy systems communication. - Outlook synchronization. - Mobile sales force devices.
Premise: Acquire and maintain customer loyalty.
Other CRM benefits: Not only retention or customer loyalty, also have an effective marketing campaigns, and help them create an intelligent cross-selling opportunities.
Successful key at this implementation: IT area involved, and also the entire company lived the CRM adoption adventure.
How we do it? - Identify functions you want to automate. - Get the support and commitment of company senior managers. - Smart use of technology. - Involving users in the construction of the system model. - Training users . - Motivational final users programs. - Internal System Administration. - Create a management committee for questions or suggestions.
Let me show you the Gantt chart: Validation of data quality and data migration (Task 8) took 28 days, simultaneously environment configuration (Task 15), Configuration adjustments (Task 25), Model Validation (Task 27), all this activities took just 28 days, including end user custom manuals (also share an example of delivered user manuals, with a familiar “for dummies books” look and feel).
Why Go-Live process took us 12 days (Task 33)?, Well our staff trained Guadalajara, Mexico City and Laredo, Texas Personnel, and Grupo ED required that we were in charge of help desk for at least 2 weeks.
What we did at Grupo ED was really satisfying for me, because we had no plan time variations, only few incidents that were resolved using overtime work. By the way also script free project.
So I've replicated this model in subsequent projects.
What I tried to do now intensively on new projects is; give confidence to IT Staff, sometimes they never stopped seeing Netsuite as a threat that jeopardized their jobs, when the company tried to implement new modules, that fear causes an internal boycott to not succeed.
Cloud Computing is a global trend that generates company savings, change is imminent! Is just a matter of time, IT pros must quickly adapt to change, and become cloud solutions integrators.