Most of us have gotten used to working from home since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic in March. It’s certainly not ideal, but most companies and employees are making it work—those who are working on ERP implementation projects, included.
But the need for IT upgrades hasn’t simply disappeared with teammates being away from the office. In fact, access to cutting edge analytics and integration between various systems is arguably more important now than it ever has been. One way to meet these new needs is the implementation of a cloud ERP system that houses all of your company’s systems within a single interface.
It’s not, however, easy to launch any project affecting an entire business—particularly during a time of crisis. Companies that have attempted to adopt new cloud ERP systems over the past few months have run into a common set of challenges. By knowing what to expect, you can set your project leaders up for success.
The year 2020 has been something of a Golden Age for cloud software up to this point.
According to a recent report from Price Waterhouse Cooper, spending on cloud computing software rose 37 percent to $29 billion during Q1 2020. And it’s only expected to increase.
PWC also surveyed finance leaders as a part of the report mentioned earlier. Seventy-five percent of those surveyed said they planned to create a more “agile business environment” moving forward. This need for streamlined spending and scalability will only hasten the transition toward cloud-based software solutions.
Identifying the need to transition toward cloud-based computing is certainly a good start for any business. Executing a project plan to implement it is, however, an entirely different matter.
Here are a few issues other companies have experienced when attempting to implement cloud-based ERP systems during the unusual times we’re currently living through.
1. Training the Staff on ERP Implementation
It can be difficult to conduct trainings at work. Very few people have the bandwidth to absorb new content, let alone fit an in-person training into their schedule. These issues are only compounded when they’re working remotely.
Employees working from home have more obligations than ever before. Many have to not only manage their own schedule, but the schedules of their children as well since quite a few schools are still conducting classes online. On top of their usual work responsibilities, these personal obligations can make it difficult for employees to pick up on new systems your company hopes to implement.
Luckily, many companies are able to offer training platforms, such as Udemy, that allow users to learn at their own pace. With instructional videos and check for understanding quizzes, employees can make sure they’re on the right track to mastering the nuances of the new system.
As a manager, you should still set deadlines for employees to complete the online modules while still being understanding of employees who need extensions.
2. Internet Access
Sometimes, the most basic factors can undermine a successful work from home initiative. Internet connectivity is possibly the most basic—and most vital.
Unless all of your employees have stable Internet access at home, your cloud ERP implementation project will fail. After all, the goal of cloud computing is giving employees access to the files and software they need regardless of whether they’re in the office or on a different continent.
It may be costly, but you might want to consider having your company subsidize high speed Internet access to essential employees who live in non-urban areas. Although few companies can afford to incur additional expenses during the uncertain times we’re living through, you’ll ultimately prevent a loss in productivity that could prove to be even more expensive.
3. Data Security During ERP Implementation
Since the start of the pandemic, the importance of smart data security practices has increasingly come into focus.
Data security experts across the country have reported a rising number of data security breaches since companies moved toward having their employees work from home at the beginning of March. With Internet usage increasing in homes, the number of phishing websites and ransomware attacks has increased in tandem.
It’s likely impossible to anticipate every type of data breach tactic. But you IT can start to create a culture of data security by outlining a company-wide policy work from home policy and then sharing it with employees. During regularly scheduled meetings, you can go over the policies with your team and make sure they’re up to date on the changes.
Your IT team can also take some degree of control over the data security of your employees by updating your company’s virtual private network (VPN). VPNs encrypt data as it travels between an employee’s device and the network, making it more difficult for hackers to steal the data as it’s being transmitted. Members of your IT should reach out to your VPN provider to see if there are any recommended patches that will keep the system up to date on any new developments.
Above all, it’s important for company leaders to frame the new cloud ERP system in terms of the benefits it will provide for the company as a whole. Once employees understand how the new technology will make their lives easier, they will be much more willing to accept any headaches that go along with making it a part of your company’s operations.
Contact Timac Business Systems today for a free demo of any of our Sage products.