Planning your NetSuite ERP implementation is essential for using Oracle NetSuite to its fullest potential. Even though Oracle NetSuite is premade, no ERP implementation is the same. The broad strategy Cloud Doing Good follows when implementing NetSuite remains constant, but each organisation has unique needs we must consider.
To minimise unexpected hurdles, we engage with all stakeholders to ensure congruity around the implementation. We standardise our checklists and expectations across the entirety of the target organisation to reduce delays and to secure the desired outcomes. To find out about Cloud Doing Good's approach, check out our NetSuite Implementation Service page.
What are the steps in NetSuite ERP Implementations?
The steps in a NetSuite implementation rollup into larger segments of engage, drive, enable and convert. Granted, the individual challenges your organisation faces will affect your NetSuite implementation plan, but it helps to think of the steps as falling into these broad buckets.
Engaging with teams is the first step in an implementation strategy. This is where the ERP project teams consisting of project managers, engineers, and management are established, kick-off calls are set and project budges, timelines and change management plans are finalised.
This stage consists of building actionable plans for the future deployment of the ERP solution. Customisations may be required and may need to be developed. This is also the time to plan for provisioning cloud-based applications or licenses and develop a training plan.
The objectives in this stage revolve around preparations for the go-live event, migrating critical data and putting the plans developed in the Drive stage into action: training, installation, and solution testing.
The final step in an ERP implementation is basically flipping the switch. Businesses complete final data migrations before the go-live date and transfer ownership of the systems to the customer.
Now we have covered the broad steps, let's look into the specific stages for an efficient implementation. A roadmap is vital for moving the project forward so that targets are met swiftly and accurately.
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ERP Implementation checklist
The vendor and client start post purchase activities. This includes developing an ERP implementation project team and the initiation of the of the project plan development. This is done by setting specific goals and objective for the ERP implementation.
To create the project plan, documenting the organisation's processes is an absolute must. Within this stage, setting up recurring project meetings ensures everyone is on the same page.
This stage requires the project plan to be finalised between the target organisation and the NetSuite implementation team. This step is vital for creating the necessary data infrastructure for the NetSuite implementation. Developing a data migration strategy, as well as creating back up and business continuity strategies for data, is of paramount importance; without the single source of truth data architecture NetSuite cannot benefit your organisation.
Additional requirements include developing the user enablement strategy. This means creating the training plan so the organisation's employees can become confident NetSuite users.
This means initiating the ERP installation solution pertinent to the new business process developed through planning activities. The migration of preliminary static data is also initiated. Additionally, finalising the installation of software and customisations is also important before the data migration.
The ERP team reviews the accuracy of data being migrated, ensuring that the data is up to date and clean without duplicates or errors. Initiating data mapping so that data can flow freely between departments and business segments is also enabled within this section. This is so that the organisation is prepared for pending testing and go-live tasks.
Initiate tests for all interfaces with user data. Upon finding any unforeseen instances of errors, troubleshoot them. This process also includes validating the acceptance of business processes to ensure all functions and user groups are running as planned.
First, prepare for the go live event with final process walkthroughs. It is vital that all additional components which are to be used from the go live are fully configured. It is helpful if the vendor and client have a cutover meeting for the go live to ensure it goes to plan. Within the go live event system ownership is transferred from the vendor to the client.
Post go live training should be conducted to ensure full user adoption of the new systems. This can be discussed within the project closeout meeting, in which post implementation support can be planned.
The final stage of the implementation is ensuring that there is adequate support in place after the go live. This includes the vendor providing ongoing maintenance and support of software through users and user training.
How long does an ERP implementation take?
It’s impossible to gauge timeline without assessing the size of the target organisation, its complexity and how it wants to use NetSuite. Typically, we expect an implementation to take at least a couple of months, although there is no hard and fast rule. The research stage of the implementation is where deadlines can be planned, setting an implementation roadmap.
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