The complete guide to ERP project managers, ERP implementation managers, ERP programme managers.
ERP Consultant Guide
If you're looking for an ERP consultant, ERP project manager or ERP consulting company then this guide is for you. In ...
If you're looking for an ERP consultant, ERP project manager or ERP consulting company then this guide is for you. In this article, we'll answer questions including:
- What is an ERP consultant?
- What is the job description of an ERP consultant?
- What are the different types of ERP consultants?
- How do I find an ERP consultant?
What is an ERP Consultant?
An ERP consultant is a specialist in delivering successful ERP implementation projects for software such as SAP, Oracle, Microsoft and others. Different types of ERP consultants specialize in different parts of the ERP implementation process, whereas the best ones are jacks of all trades.
Some ERP consultants specialize in ERP selection and evaluation and can help you to build your ERP requirements, ERP project business case, select ERP vendors and implementation providers. Other ERP consultants specialize in ERP project management, serving as the interface between your business and employees, your ERP vendor and ERP implementation provider.
Types of ERP Consultants
Independent ERP Consultant
Independent ERP consultants are typically used during the evaluation and selection of ERP software. These ERP consultants usually help your organization to build your functional and technical ERP requirements, shortlist potential ERP software and build your ERP RFI, RFP plus help you negotiate contracts. Independent ERP consultants typically have diverse backgrounds and are skilled in project management, business process, business systems and business acumen.
Functional ERP Consultant
Functional ERP consultants specialize in designing and building ERP systems in specific areas. For example, there are functional ERP consultants which specialize in financial management and accounting, inventory management and supply chain, manufacturing and production or project management and professional services. Often, there can be multiple functional ERP consultants for each area on every ERP project who work on a part-time basis as each ERP module is implemented.
ERP Project Manager
An ERP project manager is an ERP consultant that focuses on liasing between internal and external parties such as ERP service providers, ERP vendors and your own business departments and employees. The goal of the ERP project manager is to ensure that all players and components within an ERP project are aligned and deliver their duties on time and on budget. Sometimes ERP project managers can be supplied by your ERP implementation provider, however it is considered good practice to employ an ERP project manager directly to ensure you have control. Your ERP implementation partner will typically also provide their own ERP project manager to run the project from their side.
ERP Implementation Partner
An ERP implementation partner isn't an ERP consultant exactly but deserves a mention. ERP implementation partners are typically small to medium sized organizations that specialize in delivering ERP implementations for specific ERP vendors such as Oracle, SAP, Microsoft or Netsuite. ERP implementation partners typically employ a mixture of functional ERP consultants, ERP project managers, analysts and beyond to deliver a package of ERP services.
ERP Consultant Job Description
ERP consultants are generally responsible for some of the following responsibilities:
- Creating an ERP business case
- Building ERP requirements documents
- Owning the ERP Project Plan
- Interfacing between your business and ERP service providers and vendors
- Building ERP change management strategies
- Ensuring adoption of the new ERP system
- Helping to manage ERP project budgets
- User Acceptance Testings
- ERP System Design
- ERP Software Build
- ERP Integrations
- ERP Technical Hosting
- ERP Support
Where do I find an ERP Consultant?
There are many places to find ERP consultants including on LinkedIn, your local job boards, through your own network of contacts and more.
At ERP Research, we maintain our own directory of ERP consulting companies that specialize in all ERP products such as SAP, Oracle, Microsoft, Netsuite and more.
How to choose an ERP Consultant
Choosing an ERP consultant should be done based on several factors including:
A key part of an ERP consultant's role is building and maintaining rapport with your internal project team, ERP vendor and ERP partner. It's therefore key to find an ERP consultant that has a good balance of communication and relationship-building skills as well as the right knowledge.
Nothing builds skill and knowledge like good experience. When you are choosing an ERP consultant, it's a good idea to check their CV and see how much experience they have.
If your ERP project will be delivered in the USA, it's a bad idea to hire an ERP consultant based in Germany. Hiring ERP consultants which are as close as possible to your organization will make it much easier to deliver a successful project.