ERP Wizards 2. Jan Björklund: Building a successful ERP implementation team

Building a team with the right kind of competencies is one of the key factors of a successful ERP project. What are the usual roles in the ERP project teams, and what should you consider when choosing people for the team? Greenstep's Development Manager, Jan Björklund, dives deep into the topic in the second episode of the ERP Wizards podcast season. We collected his tips from the episode also into this article.

Listen to the episode "Building a successful ERP implementation team":

What should you consider before building the implementation team?

Before you start building the implementation team, it is useful to identify whether any of the personnel have participated in ERP projects before. Even if the ERP project is the first one in the organization, some employees most likely have experience in similar projects from their previous workplaces.

If there is no previous experience in ERP projects within your organization, it is important to let the supplier know so they can support you more from the start. Of course, you can also hire new people with the needed experience, but the new employees should learn to understand the organization's current processes before entering the project.

What are the usual roles in ERP project teams?

Typically ERP projects start by defining who is the buyer, aka the project sponsor. The project sponsor and the management usually compose the project's steering committee. A steering committee is a group of people who manage and steer the project in a certain direction.

Every ERP project also has two project managers; one from the customer organization and one from the supplier. These two need to work closely daily and lead the project side-by-side. Veikkaus' Product Portfolio Manager Tatu Sipilä and Greenstep's Development Manager Jan Björklund share their tips for ERP Project Managers in the third episode of ERP Wizards:

The third role is formed by the consultants and the subject matter experts, who do the hands-on work of the project. The people in this role are responsible for the different areas of the project, such as finances, procurement, and other business functions. There should always be one designated person from the customer organization who can tell, for example, how the processes are going and how they would like things to go in the future.

At the same time, the supplier should also designate a person who needs to tell if the desired things can or cannot be done in the new system. The customer's subject matter expert and the supplier's consultant should work side-by-side on a daily basis during the project.

How to ensure enough human resources for the ERP project?

The answer to the question is simple; go and discuss with the people involved in the project already in the planning phase to find out what kind of workload they have — doing the workload mapping helps you see if the people really have enough time for the project. There is often a need to hire new people for the project, and one of the most common pitfalls of ERP projects is not doing so.

Would you like to learn more about building a successful ERP Implementation team?

Greenstep's Development Manager, Jan Björklund, dove into the topic in more detail in the second episode of the ERP Wizards podcast season. Go to the episode on Spotify!

You can also find the four other episodes of the ERP Wizards season on Spotify!