An ERP system represents an investment of time and money. Yet, many companies pay more attention to the deployment and everything that leads up to it. After the deployment, businesses invest less effort and time into making sure users are engaged.
Post-ERP deployment engagement actually matters quite a bit, because it affects the level of value and ROI you get out of the system. Read on to learn why engagement boosts user adoption and ensures that employees work more efficiently and productively.
We’ll illustrate the importance of engagement, and how it boosts user adoption, with an example.
Sun Stars is a beachwear manufacturer that has just implemented a new ERP system. Its executives focused a great deal on providing training and education before the deployment. However, now that the system has been rolled out, users still have questions. And they’re not getting the answers they need.
What are employees doing instead? They’re finding workarounds to the ERP system. As a result, user adoption is quite low, and the company’s leadership feels frustrated that they’ve spent a great deal of time and effort implementing a solution that no one uses. They don’t see any value in the new ERP system whatsoever.
The goal of an ERP system is to increase efficiencies by integrating business processes and presenting a single view of the truth. Employees no longer need to hunt through multiple data sources to find the answers they need – an ERP is supposed to save them time.
However, that’s only if there’s a high level of engagement. When employees feel disengaged with the software, they won’t use it. Rather, they’ll utilize outdated, inefficient methods such as legacy software. And they’ll ignore the new, more efficient ERP software.
Efficiency and productivity are closely linked. When employees work more efficiently, they produce a higher level of output. By increasing efficiency, ERP software boosts productivity, too.
Employees can’t be productive if they’re not using a tool that improves that characteristic. And they won’t use that tool if:
How does engagement change that negativity towards an ERP system? Engagement means that users genuinely want to utilize the software – they know how to use it, they understand how it benefits them and the firm, they have a strong grasp of how it helps them do their jobs better, and they don’t feel as though it was forced upon them from on high.
Ensuring that employees are engaged with ERP software is an ongoing process; it’s not a one-time event. It requires an investment in time and effort, but engagement provides fantastic dividends, including higher adoption, efficiency, and productivity.