When planning for Global deployment of an ERP, organizations may be wonder about the right implementation approach. They may have questions like whether to deploy on the all the geographical sites and companies at the same point of time or to go with a phased manner of rollout approach or may choose the ‘out-of-the-box’ vanilla features in the first phase or to go with the detailed comprehensive business process mapping?
Generally, smaller organizations having operations within smaller, defined geographic regions will be fine with a full-fledged big bang approach of implementation. However, larger corporations with multiple geographic reach will find Rollout Implementation as a better option.
The key areas this paper will focus on are:-
2.1 PHASED MANNER
Dynamics ERP global rollouts, by their very nature, have far reaching implication on organizations as a whole. The two most frequent used ERP implementation strategies are a big bang or a phased rollout.
Big bang approach, as the name suggest, where all the modules go live at the same point of time. But where there are multiple group companies and regions are involved then phased rollout is the only best suitable option that companies are going with. Phased rollout is mainly divided in to 3 steps where first, all the global organization wide standard processes are analyzed, mapped and documented. First, the HQ will go live with the must have features and side by side different companies / countries rollouts are started. And once each company / country starts stabilizing on the Dynamics 365 platform, then feature enhancements are considered and developed as per the need of the respective local company in turn to map the remaining business processes and compliance to local statutory and regulatory requirements are met. Major benefit from such phased rollout is higher success rate and less risk of failure, and further skills and experience gained at each rollout helps to smooth the processes in to the next rollouts.
2.3 COUNTRY SPECIFIC LOCALIZATION
Global templates are defined based on the ‘Out-of-the-box’ vanilla feature plus adding the ‘must-have’ processes of the organization which required across all the rollouts. But it is very important to understand the local requirements in relation to the regional legal compliances in respect to the tax, accounting, auditing are reporting needs.
Microsoft Dynamics localization is available for major ~35 countries. So the implementation partner need to confirm the availability of the Microsoft localization standard pack or any further customization is required in to that. One caution is required to be taken here, that such country specific localization should never be assumed by the team. Each requirement should be drafted properly and tested thoroughly in to localization pack.
2.4 ROLLOUT EXECUTION TEAM
In the global rollout execution, multiple stakeholders come together from the different regions and geographies. A balanced combination of the offshore and onshore team is the key for the success, so utmost care is required in selecting the internal and external project team and stakeholders for both global build and local deployments. Communication is one of the key factors for the success of the rollouts, bilingual consultants are preferred who have command of a second and relevant language. They are handy in bridging the gap between the local business users and the implementation team.
2.5 PROGRAM MANAGEMENT
The large and complex nature of a global ERP Rollouts requires a similarly expansive & robust program governance model. Rollout program management plan consists of the following synopsis which should be covered in the local project plan.
Dynamics ERP global rollouts, by their very nature, have far reaching implication on organizations as a whole. Therefore, it is crucial to look at the potential effect of the rollout approach on each companies and locations. Risk mitigation and change management need to be a critical project governance focus during the life of the project.
If the first rollout of the implementation is successful and a team immediately experiences the benefits of the new system, then it creates confidence and enthusiasm within the organization. And once the rollout is been done then organization may think up to have a centralized support centre for further enhancements and change requests. And all these will ultimately lead to lowering the Total Cost of Ownership. So have the best approach and processes in your hand to have the successful rollouts.
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