The globalization stage of growth in your business requires changes in some of the most standard operations like financials or human resource management.  As more and more companies expand internationally, differences in cultural and system issues within accounting systems have led to difficulty in producing financial statements.  International Microsoft Dynamics GP (Great Plains) implementation has  proven successful in these types of companies. 

  • Timelines – When implementing ERP software for an international / multinational company, imposing a strict timeline / deadline can be counterproductive.  Allow the timeline for your project to be determined based on the systems’ requirements and constraints.  Once you have determined the full scope and effort of the project, allowing for the inevitable delays and unforeseen challenges, agree to a realistic timeframe for your project.  Don’t work backwards from a preferred go-live date, and then try to force your project to fit within that artificial timeframe.
  •  Budgets – Few projects are completed within the initial budget and timeline.  As you make progress towards your ultimate goal, the successful deployment of your new ERP system, your initial budget will need to be constantly reviewed and updated.  Accept that at the kick-off meeting you will not be able to accurately forecast all of the different challenges that will arise, and allow your budget to be flexible enough to accommodate these changes. 
  • Processes – A successful ERP system implementation will include the adoption of “best practices,” more efficient and cost-effective ways of achieving more than your current system can support.  Some of the changes will be to your processes, not just the new software.  Implementing a new software package merely to accommodate your existing business practices and policies means leaving too many benefits on the table.  A successful implementation will result in new approaches to existing challenges and should open the eyes of your employees to maximize the potential benefits of your new system.
  • Project Team – When selecting the key members of your project team, be certain to include executives, management and key individuals responsible for day to day operations.  The executives will set the strategic vision for the project, and the managers and key employees will help determine the proper processes to support that strategic vision.  Excluding representatives from any level of the company may result in a significant oversight, and could delay the successful implementation.  Everyone involved will be putting in a tremendous effort; don’t let the final result fall short by not including all perspectives.
  • Communicate – keep the entire team informed as to progress, key milestones and setbacks along the course of the implementation.  Timely and open feedback as to the progress made to date, and the challenges still be to be faced, will keep everyone on the same page and focused on the common goal.

Utilizing Project Managers to monitor the whole implementation process will ultimately save the company money.  Ultimately expanding your business to the global stage will require many changes that will allow for your company to communicate clearly with the rest of the world.  Microsoft Dynamics GP (Great Plains) provides a platform to let your business stand out and avoid common cultural communication problems that can arise.

By TMC, your Los Angeles Dynamics GP partner

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