During the development phase of most ERP Projects the input of both expert knowledge is required as well the knowledge of those involved in the day to day running of the enterprise. This process is normally best done by the Project Manager splitting the organization into functional teams. The teams established by the project manager should be specifically chosen in that they consisted of members from throughout the organisation.
“In order to complete a complex task successfully, a project team should be established consisting of cross-functional members.” Buchanan
One of the important aspects when starting a project is for the project manager and the project team to have a positive approach to the project. It is our experience at SME Project Management Services that most project sponsors were enthusiastic about the ERP project s they were undertaking and that they were extremely determined to contribute to its success. Another import project technique is that the project should be seen to be collegial and that its environment is condusive to encouraging positive user feedback. During ERP Implementations the project team should be mindful that they should create a detailed Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) that is to be left behind for the users to continue using the system correctly.
“The project team should show respect for the users and understand that they will need to live with what has been created during the project when all the project team has left”. Johnson
To achieve success within the ERP project the leadership skills of the project manager will need to be exercised. In many projects people come from different parts of the organisation each of which have their own leadership styles. In our experience we have seen a different approach to leadership styles, some companies have a more lassaire fair attitude to leadership whereas others can be more hands on. During the the project that we have completed we have found that the project manager needed to have advanced leadership skills and needed to be assertive when necessary. Another aspect was that he/she needs to back the project team 100% and showed confidence in their ability to deliver the solution. SME Project Management Services has found that that even within a complex team dynamic the stakeholders need t have respect for the project manager and need to be able to back the decisions made by the project manager without question.
“Overcoming cultural variations and creating a climate of co-operation amongst the team members without direct line authority is extremely challenging”. Young