With over 20+ years’ experience in ERP and CRM implementations, I know how important it is for a business that’s deploying a brand new ERP or CRM solution to find a systems integrator (SI) that provides real value, and that they can trust.
The importance is huge. The right systems integrator will ensure your organisation is set up with the best technology, bringing together disparate systems and unifying them into an integrated solution that assists with performing business processes from end to end. From initial planning to deployment, an SI should be able to get you up and running quickly, cost-effectively, and with the minimum possible disruption to your business.
Accelerators assist in driving project implementations to help you achieve this, by speeding up the deployment of your solution. Hitachi Solutions offer a variety of accelerators to help our customers implement successfully.
In this blog, we consider what your organisation should expect from an SI and highlight the value that accelerators can offer.
We’re proud to be working in partnership with RPS – the global professional services firm – to upgrade and modernise their IT infrastructure, with our accelerators playing a crucial role. Based upon Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations, plus the Hitachi Solutions Essentials for Professional Services offering, the solution will seamlessly connect 5,600 professionals working across 125 countries.
As Gary Young, Group Finance Director at RPS, says “'Essentials for Professional Services' and Hitachi’s pragmatism, complements RPS’ approach and desire to implement the solution as quickly and smoothly as possible”.
The key value of an industry-vertical accelerator is the time saved. If you start from scratch, you have to do so much more work to get your new system up and running. Typically, you will need to customise standard software significantly to meet your requirements, which takes time and money. If you start with an industry-ready accelerator, a lot of this work is already done for you. The specific requirements of your industry have already been dealt with in the system. You will need to customise less – which means it is immediately cheaper, easier and quicker to deploy.
New technology offers new opportunities to streamline processes, boost productivity and reduce costs. But potential improvements in these areas might be held back by a tendency to stick to familiar practices rather than transform how your organisation works to gain benefit from the opportunity that new technology can offer.
Industry-tailored accelerators are built with best practice in mind, so that you can not only embrace the latest technologies but make the shift in mindset, culture and process that is required to benefit the most. If you start from best practice it means that you are showing the organization what ‘good’ looks like today.
And, of course, best practice differs across each industry, and can be affected by legal and regulatory constraints. Such factors must be considered when selecting an industry accelerator.
An industry-specific accelerator uses terminology your employees understand and offers functionality that helps your teams achieve their daily tasks. This makes it much easier for users to switch over to your new solution, as they won’t have to learn unnecessary new technical terms that aren’t relevant to their industry.
For example, your new CRM system will refer to ‘customers’ and ‘products’ rather than ‘clients’ and ‘service lines’. Simple things like this can greatly assist in the adoption process.
Changing software is an expensive, wide-ranging project with risks involved. Deploying new technologies can take significant time, effort and money. However, there comes a time when a new system is needed – and all of this work now lies ahead of you. A good SI offers methodology and accelerators that reduce the pain and time of this experience. For instance, if a solution has been prebuilt, it has been pretested and can contribute to reducing risks when compared to building a solution from scratch.
It is important to find an SI that has experience working within similar industries and has demonstrated expertise in leveraging proven methodology and accelerators to provide a known outcome.
At Hitachi Solutions, we provide accelerators based on project and industry experience over a number of years.
In this blog, we have explained what customers should expect, how important methodology and accelerators are, and the value that can be delivered by the right SI. Next, we will look at questions that you can ask your SI to make sure you get value for money.