Ready for a Successful ERP Implementation? Take these Three Steps First

Ready for a Successful ERP Implementation? Take these Three Steps First

Whether you’re implementing your first enterprise resource planning (ERP) platform or replacing a legacy system that no longer meets your needs, there are some steps you can take to ensure the best possible outcome. That means getting your ERP project finished on time, within budget and with the fewest headaches—all in a way that meets your expectations.  

With decades of experience successfully implementing NetSuite for many different organizations, BDO Digital recommends all companies do the following three steps before diving in.

3 Steps To Take Before ERP Implementation

1. Take an introspective look at your business, its current processes and its future goals. 

You can approach this by asking yourself questions like:  

  • What current business processes and systems are in place? 

  • What are the strengths and weaknesses of each of these systems? 

  • What changes do we have to make in order to overcome the weaknesses? 

  • What internal and external resources will help us reach our ERP implementation goals? 

  • And, what’s our timeline and budget for this project? 


2. Get the right people and partners involved and onboard early in the process. 

Successful NetSuite implementations require executive sponsors; a project manager to plan, execute and monitor the implementation; business process owners; end users and an experienced implementation partner. The latter will bear much of the responsibility of getting your ERP implementation completed while a solid internal team will help ensure a great outcome.  

Get these external and internal resources onboard early, preferably during the early planning stages. 

“Stand up a team that can review the system, conduct the user acceptance testing (UAT) and train staff on how to use NetSuite,” James Neal, a BDO Digital Practice Leader said. “Or, enlist the help of your outsourced finance/accounting partner to handle some or all of these responsibilities.”  

3. Lay the groundwork for success by setting realistic, attainable expectations for your software implementation.

Once you’ve selected your ERP, set up your internal teams and sign a contract with an implementation partner, be sure to set some software implementation expectations and ensure that everyone understands what’s ahead over the next 6-12 months. Some things may have to change as a result of your NetSuite implementation, knowing that the best approach is to fully adopt your new system, versus just expecting it to operate like your old one did. 

Once your new system is in place you can refine and tweak it as needed. “Don’t try to accomplish every single goal before you know enough about the system and how it works in your environment,” said Neal. “You can also make refinements later and as needed.” 

Want to learn more time-tested steps to a successful NetSuite implementation? 

Download BDO Digital’s new guide, ERP 101: Your NetSuite Implementation Toolkit