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How To Recover From A Failed Software Implementation: Get Back On Track

By: Panorama Consulting Group

Email: Panorama Consulting Group
Telephone: 720-515-1377 ext 117


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When companies undergo an ERP implementation, sometimes, the project doesn’t go according to plan. Thankfully, there’s a good chance you may still be able to salvage it.

If you kept a change log, have a grasp on the challenges you encountered, and have evidence of which parties were behind the collapse, you could find a way forward.

Today, we’re sharing how to recover from a failed software implementation.

5 Tips for Getting Your Project Back on Track

Once some time has passed and you’ve cleared the dust from your eyes, it becomes a little easier to see where your project veered off-track and what you need to do next. Let’s look at a few steps you can take as you plan your next move.

1. Reconsider Your ERP Software

Sometimes, organizations select ERP software that isn’t the right fit for their business. When this happens, the culprit is usually a rushed or mismanaged ERP selection process.

Too often, teams rush into their ERP projects and don’t give software selection the time and attention it deserves.

Selecting the right vendor is a critical first step in any digital transformation project. When you follow a clear ERP selection methodology, you can make sure the software you select is the right fit for your immediate and long-term goals.

Some of the key questions to ask during this phase include:

• What are our pain points?
• Where are we currently experiencing inefficiencies?
• Which areas of our business do we want to prioritize and improve?

After an ERP failure, take a close look at the solution you implemented and see if it might have been the wrong one from the beginning.

2. Examine Your OCM Approach​

It’s easy to blame the ERP software when a project doesn’t go as planned. However, failures can also occur due to reasons that aren’t technical at all.

Organizational change management is the process of preparing your employees for what lies ahead. It should be woven into every step and phase of your project, and it requires more attention than a few meetings or Q&A sessions. When it doesn’t get the attention it deserves, your project could suffer.

Consider how much emphasis you gave OCM during your project. If it wasn’t on your radar, then what you perceive as failure could actually be change resistance from your employees.

3. Assess Your Implementation Approach​

ERP projects often fail when project teams do not follow a proven methodology when completing each phase.

While each company and project are unique, there are essential elements that successful implementations normally include, such as:

• Strong project management
• Thorough system testing
• Strategic data migration
• Executive-level engagement and buy-in
• Business process management

Were these practices essential components of your ERP plan? Consider how you might improve your implementation plan moving forward.

4. Work With (the Right) Third Party Consultants​

ERP projects can fail because the teams working on them are simply too close to the work to see red flags as they appear.

However, even companies that do engage an outside set of eyes can experience failure. Some ERP consultants may not be the best fit for your organization. In fact, their “help” could be hurting your progress and could even be at the root of your failure.

If you think this might be the case, look for these warnings:

• Your project is going over budget
• Your project is behind schedule
• You aren’t holding regular status meetings
• You aren’t holding regular steering committee meetings
• Project issues keep compounding and snowballing

You don’t have to stick with a particular consultant, even if they’ve taken you this far. The Panorama team, including Bill Baumann, Director of Software Expert Witnesses, can help you identify and get around a bad implementation partner so you can move forward in confidence.

5. Don’t Start From Scratch​

When your ERP project fails, it can be tempting to scratch everything and start over from the beginning.

Instead of removing the system altogether, consider how you can optimize the software and your business processes.

Your ERP project recovery team can help you decide which parts of the system are salvageable, and how to make the best use of them.

Learn How to Recover From a Failed Software Implementation​

When you’re in the middle of an ERP software failure, it can be difficult to know where to go. You might even be tempted to abandon the project in its entirety, despite how much money, time, and energy you’ve already poured into it.

Now that you know how to recover from a failed software implementation, these issues shouldn’t seem like the end of the road. Most projects are salvageable if you know what to do.

Enterprise software consultants, like Panorama, can help you identify where things went wrong and provide recommendations to get your efforts back on track. We can review your project documentation, discover critical issues, and provide you with a roadmap as you move forward.

Contact us below to learn more and get started.


Panorama Consulting Group is a technology-agnostic consultancy specializing in Digital Business Transformation and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) System Implementations for mid- to large-sized private- and public-sector organizations worldwide. This highly respected firm is 100% independent of software and technology vendor affiliation. They offer a phased and integrated approach to strategy alignment and execution, enabling each client to achieve its unique business transformation objectives by transforming its people, processes, and technology.

Panorama clients include multi-national conglomerates from Amazon Robotics to Valcor Engineering, as well as governmental entities, including state and local governments, municipalities, school districts, state offices of the attorney general, and tribal governments.

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