If you are in a manufacturing business, you strive to have a thorough understanding of your day-to-day business activities such as cash flow, inventory levels, sales orders, production orders, etc., as it is this very knowledge which allows you to run your operations smoothly and make informed decisions for your business. However, it is virtually impossible for you to keep track of all these — and other whole lots of affairs — manually. You need a tool which can combine various functions of your business, integrate the entire data in a single database and allows you to access it with ease at any given time.
SAP Business One is that potent tool for you. It automates your business’ key functions such as finance, CRM, warehousing, production management, procurement, reporting, and analytics etc. and allows you to run your business in a seamless manner. A flexible software which easily fits the needs of small and medium-sized businesses, SAP Business One is easy to use and very quick to implement. Apart from that, it also has some other specific advantages for manufacturing companies, such as improved efficiency, enhanced scalability, informed decisions, increased profits, reduced costs & better control over the business.
Having said that, despite the apparent benefits of SAP Business One, a lot also depends on the selection of an implementation partner and the subsequent implementation process. Because no matter how perfectly the solution fits your business’ needs, you are likely to experience problems if you don’t handle the implementation correctly. So, it makes a lot of sense to do everything it takes to ensure the success of its implementation. This blog throws light on a few important questions that every organization must seek answers to before the SAP Business One implementation:
Is the prospective partner’s offering industry or vertical based solution?
It is important to ask your prospective vendor whether his offering is industry or vertical based. It is important to know because the business needs of a seafood manufacturer can be different from that of a beer manufacturer, even as they both fall under the food & beverages industry. So, what a broader, industry-based solution can’t offer, a micro-verticalized solution can.
Does his product need customization or fits your needs as it is?
This question is in a way related to the previous question. If the vendor offers industry-based solutions, you need to see whether that solution fits your business needs as it is, or do you need to customize it. Even in case of a vertical-based solution, there might be a need for customization, the level of which definitely is drastically low.
What is your partner’s technical expertise, and are his offerings contemporary?
It is important your implementation partner has functional knowledge and experience. Sound product expertise and understanding of your business’s unique requirements is also a must. If he’s not able to understand your business requirements, the further processes will be automatically affected. Also, you must check whether his offerings are up-to-date and match the current technological trends. It will be a shame if your partner has no idea about SAP S4/HANA while the world is migrating to it.
Do you know everything about your prospective partner?
You must conduct your prospective implementation partner’s thorough background check. This includes information about his clients, their references, his ability to deliver the implementation on time, keeping the budget, requisite tools and resources to fulfill the needs of the implementation, long-term support post-implementation, future development roadmap etc.
Does your partner have an experienced team?
For SAP Business One solution implementation, it’s important to have an implementation team equipped with requisite skill-set and experience, which leads to the success of the project.
What’s the prospective partner’s overall track record of successful implementations?
Ask and research for the prospective partner’s track record. Check all the customer testimonials and case studies. Figure out the details about the past implementations successfully done by him. If the SAP Business One solution partner you are evaluating has worked for businesses like yours, you are in talks with the right partner.
How good is your partner with the post-implementation support and training?
This is an important factor while determining the right implementation partner. A good software provider must offer continuous, uninterrupted support post-implementation, anywhere and anytime. Besides, he must also provide sound training to your employees who are going to use the software. You can go ahead with him if he fulfills the criteria.
What extra does the SAP partner offer?
You must check what extra does the prospective implementation partner has to offer besides the software. This includes licensing, add-ons development, upgrade services, and hardware & server solutions. You can ask the partner whether all these are also a part of partner service.
Is the partner adaptable and flexible?
It is advisable to see whether or not the solution partner is flexible and adaptable to the changes your organization might expect from him. Flexibility reflects the whole culture of the company. If the partner is rigid, he won’t be of much use in times of emergency. Adaptability too is an equally important trait for any solution partner, so as to be able to keep pace with the changing trends and circumstances.
Is change management a part of the package?
Implementing a new business system is not just a technical project, but also a business change project, which brings with it own set of challenges. It has a major impact on the way your employees work, as they now need to adapt to newer ways of executing their job. No matter how seamless the integration is, there is bound to be some initial resistance. Change management thus becomes important and you need a partner who can help you with it. Ask your prospective partner if he can support in this regard.
Conclusion: Making a decision as crucial as opting for an SAP Business One implementation for your business can be a cumbersome job. But BatchMaster, which is a channel partner of SAP Business One and has experience of 30+ years of serving different verticals of process manufacturing industries, makes it easy for you. We offer a bouquet of SAP Business One services such as license procurement, installation, implementation, customization, add-on development, and training and support. For more information, write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.