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Best Practices for Successful Enterprise Transformations: Systems Integration

In our last article in our series on successful Enterprise Transformations we want to discuss Systems Integration.

Odds are good that you have information flows and enterprise applications other than your ERP system that manage different areas of your business. Maybe you have a payroll package that handles payroll – which means your employee data needs to integrate back to your ERP. Perhaps you have estimating software - and since each estimate will tie into your ERP system, you need to integrate that as well.

Welcome to the art of systems integration.

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Enterprise Transformations with Merit Solutions

In order to sustain growth and profitability, companies must create the business workstreams, organization and culture, and information flows that form the foundation for continuous improvement and driving higher value for customers. How are you positioned?

Today’s enterprises have ample opportunities to leverage the advantages derived from being globally operated in order to continuously improve and sustain long-term success. End-to-end visibility, global brand advantages, sourcing and procurement power, and the ability to move quickly on market opportunities are all examples of benefits of globalization. The most successful companies today are those that can anticipate rather than react to those signals.

In an effort to sustain growth, profitability, and competitive advantages, many executives are looking to enterprise transformation projects hoping to align their people, workstreams, and information flows investments more closely together, globally, to create more efficient and effective operations, resulting in higher value to their customers.

Unfortunately, we find that while many companies have made investments in enterprise transformation projects looking to gain improvements, make work repeatable, remove waste, and increase value to their customers - few have actually achieved the business results they targeted.

Learn more about Enterprise Transformations with Merit Solutions.

Quality and Compliance: The Ogres Under the Bridge?

The bridge from product inception and or production to the customer’s hands may seem like an amicable journey. The plan is followed and milestones attained. Then QA jumps out and growls that the product can’t be released due to a potential quality issue. The result: deadlines not met, revenue not realized and workplace harmony is destroyed. Sound familiar? Well you aren’t alone.

A 2014 survey of device manufactures conducted by Compliance-Alliance found that 27% of respondents categorized QA as a “necessary evil, a deterrent to revenue or a policeman who always says no.”

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Best Practices for Successful Enterprise Transformations: Project Management

As we’ve said before in this series, an Enterprise Transformation initiative takes in-depth planning and risk mitigation. The risks are high because of the importance of workstream and information flow efficiency and effectiveness to your organization. This is why it is so important to have a good project management plan in place before you begin. In this post, we will be discussing project management best practices to help ensure your project is a success. Continue reading "Best Practices for Successful Enterprise Transformations: Project Management"

Best Practices for Successful Enterprise Transformations: Change Management

When you start planning an enterprise transformation, it’s critical that you add change management to your project plan. In this post, we will discuss some best practices for change management when implementing new information flows and workstreams.

Change management is an important part of any project, but it is crucial when going through an enterprise transformation. Implementing new systems and workstreams involve documenting and improving activities within the organization, and employees need to be properly trained to handle the changes to their roles, responsibilities, and tasks.

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Best Practices for Successful Enterprise Transformations: Fit Gap Analysis

Last week we start our series, Best Practices for Successful Enterprise Transformations, by discussing Business Process Modeling. Today we continue our series with Fit Gap Analysis during software selection.

When undertaking an enterprise transformation, selecting the right ERP software for your business is a complex endeavor. You need to make the right decision the first time. While the right ERP software can transform your business, picking the wrong one can leave you with a platform that does not support your organization’s continuous improvement or growth goals.

Follow the best practices in this post to make sure you have a successful fit gap analysis during software selection – leading to a project that finishes within budget, on time, and has tangible business benefits.

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The 3 D's of Medical Device Documentation

We are surrounded by acronyms. It is a wonder we can communicate at all. To make things more complicated, every industry has its own set of terms. The files defined below may sound similar but are governed by different requirements. They are all connected like the cars of a train. It is important to understand the expectations for each file in order to maintain compliance. Poor design controls can lead to product issues and a poorly compiled DHR may indicate a lack of evidence that the product was manufactured appropriately. Continue reading "The 3 D's of Medical Device Documentation"

Best Practices for Successful Enterprise Transformations: Business Process Modeling

Over the next couple of weeks, we will be discussing enterprise transformation projects to understand what companies can do to mitigate risk and increase the chance that their transformation will drive long-term value.

For part 1 of our series, we’ll take a look at business process modeling. Business process modeling (BPM) is a model-based engineering sub-discipline that can be applied to business analysis and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) implementations.

The most important part of BPM is to determine the current state (as is) of your people, processes, and systems and to then compare them to the proposed (to be) state that is planned with your enterprise transformation. This will require a lot of research up front to make sure that all of your processes are properly documented.

There are a few ways to do this. Some companies will use general tools like Microsoft Visio, Word, and Excel to document processes as they are uncovered. Other companies will choose professional business process modeling software. Either way can work; the important thing is that you map your current and plan your proposed processes.

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How to Use Lean Management to Improve Profitability

Are you looking for ways to improve the profitability of your company? If so, using lean management and manufacturing practices may be just what you need.

Lean management (or lean in general) combines processes, methodologies, measurements, and training to increase profits and minimize process breakage. The whole idea is preserving value for the customer with less work. The management philosophy of lean manufacturing mostly came from the Toyota production system (TPS). TPS was renowned for improving overall customer value at Toyota and has been attributed for much of their success.

There are generally a couple of questions you should ask when you start thinking about lean management.

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5 Methods to Improve Innovation in Your Business

Are you looking to improve innovation in your business? If so, here are 5 methods you can use to continuously inspire innovation:

  1. Use the fear of complacency to keep things moving forward.
  2. Find your champions of change.
  3. Get your front line employees involved.
  4. Create big, but achievable goals.
  5. Break down the walls.

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