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8 Things Your ERP System Should Do: Include User Enablement and Support

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8 Things Your ERP System Should Do: Include User Enablement and Support

In the world of Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software, user enablement and support are critical.  Without them, you cannot expect a successful implementation and on-going optimum usage. This blog explores effective strategies and best practices for empowering users, from pre-implementation planning to ongoing support and training.

Pre-Implementation: Setting the Stage for Success

Identify User Needs and Roles: First understand who your users are and their needs.  (See: Embarking on a new Journey, Putting together the right team) Include what critical functions are difficult to meet. Map tasks and workflows to specific user roles (old and new).  This is essential to tailor training and resources effectively. It is best, if each user receives relevant and role-specific guidance.

Communicate Change Effectively: A crucial aspect of user enablement is clear communication about changes. Inform users about the benefits and improvements the new ERP system brings and the reason the company is investing. Effective communication can alleviate apprehensions and build anticipation.

Build Stakeholder Buy-In: Achieving successful user enablement requires the support of key decision-makers and influencers. Engage these individuals early on to champion the user enablement effort and realize new system benefits.

Training and Onboarding: Equipping Users with Skills and Knowledge

Variety of Training Methods: People learn in different ways. Combining instructor-led training, e-learning modules, job aids, and video tutorials can cater to varied learning styles. Utilizing product-specific resources and YouTube videos can also enhance understanding.

Hands-on Practice: Practical, real-world scenarios and simulations in a test company with your company’s data are a must.  This will allow users to apply newly acquired skills in a controlled environment that doesn’t seem foreign.  This approach reinforces learning and builds confidence.

Just-in-Time Learning: Providing readily accessible resources like cheat sheets, FAQs, and context-sensitive help within the ERP system ensures users have the information they need when they need it.

Ongoing Support and Reinforcement: Sustaining User Engagement and Proficiency

Peer-to-Peer Support: Encourage a culture of knowledge sharing and collaboration. Mentoring programs, user groups and user conferences can facilitate this.  Plan to providing and environment for users to assist and learn from each other.

Community Forums and Knowledge Bases: Centralized platforms for users to ask questions, share tips, and access resources are invaluable for continuous learning and support.

Performance Feedback and Metrics: Monitoring user activity and performance related to the ERP system can identify areas for improvement and gauge the effectiveness of enablement initiatives.

Use your Value Added Reseller (VAR) but make sure they “teach you to fish”  The best ERP deployments are well adopted by internal users who have learned and are proficient in financial, inventory, production, CRM and reporting ERP capabilities.

Additional Best Practices: Enhancing User Enablement Efforts

Focus on Business Value: Always connect the training and resources to how the new ERP system can help users achieve their individual and departmental goals.

Personalize the Experience: Tailor training and resources to meet the specific needs and roles of different users.

Get Feedback and Expect the process to be Iterative: Continuously seek user feedback and adjust training and support offerings accordingly.

Invest in Change Management: Address potential resistance to change by equipping users with the necessary tools and resources to adapt effectively.

Implementing these best practices can significantly enhance user comfort, confidence, and productivity with the new ERP system. This comprehensive approach to user enablement and support not only drives successful adoption but also maximizes ROI and fosters long-term success.

Conclusion

The collaboration between Acuity and SAP provides a robust framework for user enablement and support. By leveraging SAP's resources, Acuity ensures that users are not just prepared to use the ERP system but are proficient and confident in doing so. This partnership paves the way for successful software implementation, fostering long-term growth and success.

Joseph Timmins

Author