The investment in ERP was meant to improve productivity, efficiency, and profitability for the batch process manufacturer. Management appeared gung-ho; employees anticipated positive change. Then, the grumbling began. Staff got frustrated and began working around the new system. Managers pointed fingers at the software provider. Moral and productivity suffered during a plant-wide mutiny.
Luckily, this story is fiction. However, ask yourself what might cause employees to resist using an ERP system once it’s in place? If you consider the reasons below, you’ll write a better ending to your ERP implementation story, when the time comes.
Management loses interest in enterprise resource planning
Top stakeholders may not effectively manage the change. Management switches to other strategic priorities too soon after the software provider completes the initial implementation. They don’t use the system, and make excuses because management doesn’t want to do the work to learn the software. Finally, mid-level managers are frustrated in their efforts to fully implement the ERP system because they cannot get needed attention, instructions, and direction from top management.
Training wasn’t adequate
Employees may not have spent enough time in training or dug deeply enough into a topic to feel confident of their abilities. This is especially true if they were rushed through the process and if they now have no readily accessible resource for continued learning or for questions.
Employees fear change of the enterprise resource planning
Many employees fear change, period. The move to automation creates fears of downsizing and job loss. Some employees are not computer savvy, and worry about their ability to learn. The sheer quantity of new information employees must learn may be overwhelming, so, they drag their feet.
Little process change
If a company invests in a new ERP system, but processes are not changed or improved, there’s little reason for employees to get very excited. Processes will appear to be “the same old thing.”
Politics and power
Sometimes, the “keeper of the information” enjoys prestige and power within an organization. These employees might resist a loss in importance with company-wide training on the ERP software, where the playing field is equal. They may vocalize their criticism, actively bad-mouth the system, or refuse to use it.
Poor enterprise resource planning design
Sometimes, the enterprise resource planning software’s design is challenging. The platform’s confusing, or there are too many steps involved in the execution of a particular function. Navigation isn’t intuitive or user-friendly. If the software is too restrictive, Staff isn’t eager to work with, or “own,” the software because it’s inflexible. The ERP system is a mismatch with the company culture. For example, the company may prioritize exceptional service, but the software touts production efficiency and cost savings.
Some employees avoid using the enterprise resource planning software for deceptive reasons. They hide poor skills or work habits, or commit fraud, or steal from the company. The ERP software provides complete visibility of the entire operation, accurately tracks inventory, and is closely tied to an underlying accounting process.
As a leading mid-market enterprise resource planning software solution for the process manufacturing industry, ProcessPro delivers a superior product and takes action to ensure that employees actually use the system once it’s installed. Our knowledge and experience of 25+ years in the business have led to the development of the following client services:
- Detailed Needs Assessment during the ERP provider selection process and . . .
- Customized Software Demo, based on your data, with fine-tuning, per your feedback
- Regular Stakeholder Meetings between our staff and your top management and project team during implementation and . . .
- Coach-to-Peer Training between our staff and your key ERP software “power users”
- Client Support through our website Self-Service Portal, LinkedIn ProcessPro Client Group participation, and Pre-scheduled GoToMeeting sessions with your staff and our client support specialists throughout account management as well as . . .
- Education through our e-books, e-newsletters, webinars, white papers, and Client Connect User Conferences
- On-going Project Management through ProductAdvantage, with assistance of a dedicated account manager and customer support team, and ClientAdvantage, which provides all the benefits of ProductAdvantage PLUS additional perks.
Contact ProcessPro to discuss how we can help your company with an ERP solution. A dedicated member of our business development team can provide all the information you need.