As an industry, enterprise resource planning (ERP) has seen rapid growth over the past few years and this looks set to continue. Paving the way for the countless businesses looking to use these systems are ERP consultants. What can they do for a business that it couldn’t handle in house? And do they still add value if you have an implementation partner?
First things first – you’re not just looking at one role but (arguably) three – the functional consultant, the technical consultant, and the rarer hybrid consultant. All three are useful when implementing an ERP system – or migrating from one to another, when the need arises.
“Nobody plans to fail. They just fail to plan,” as the old saying has it. A functional consultant will make sure you don’t learn that lesson the hard way on your implementation or migration.
They’ll look both at the bigger picture of the process and at the smaller details; what does this change mean for your business? Your primary department has this kind of workflow – will that be affected by your choice of solution? How can you minimise any negative effects? And where will you really benefit?
Usually a functional ERP consultant will get involved early in the process, the better to help you shape your implementation strategy. They also understand this industry; they can act as your advocate with your implementation partner, cutting through the jargon and pushing for your priorities.
So you’ve got your strategy in place. You know how the smaller details of business as usual (BAU) will be affected. You have a list of tasks for the implementation itself.
Hopefully you’ve already picked out your technical consultants and got a contract in place, because this is when their work really begins.
A technical consultant might handle anything and everything from system installation, configuration, and customisation to API integrations. They might provide custom coding to resolve any problems in the implementation out of the box.
If they’re not the only person working on the project (not at all unlikely), a technical ERP consultant can be the glue that holds the project together, just as the system will once it’s live.
Most likely, any project that is handled just by one consultant will have a hybrid consultant on the case. As the name suggests, they have to provide the broad understanding and strategic guidance of the functional consultant while also offering the detailed knowledge and skill of the technical consultant.
These rare contractors are also excellent in leadership roles through larger projects, where any gaps in their technical knowledge can be covered by other consultants.
Matching Consultant to Project
So, you have an ERP project to undertake. Perhaps you’re implementing a new solution, migrating a company from one to another, or you’re expecting an upcoming upgrade to be difficult.
You know what’s going to need doing. You’ve scoped out the project. You have an idea of timescale, budget, and even how big a team you need.
How do you find the consultants that suit your project?
IT Works will take your specific requirements, including skillset and team fit when needed. Then we put our experience and our library of ERP professionals to use, offering you qualified candidates hand-picked to suit your requirements.
Contact us today and we’ll help you through the process every step of the way.