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In a study conducted by Panorama Consulting Solutions, more than 70% of ERP implementations fail to deliver the expected business benefits. With such a high failure rate, we take a look at some of the reasons you need to be aware of to mitigate and reduce your risk of failure.

On the other hand, Accounting Software is (in theory), considerably easier to implement – but it’s important to be aware that these implementation pitfalls have the potential to occur for any IT system which has the capacity to disrupt normal business processes.

1. Lack of Management Sponsor

An ERP implementation will involve many departments across the business, and it’s important to have an executive sponsor to drive the project forward and unite the team throughout the process.

Additionally, if you don’t have an executive sponsor to drive the adoption of a new ERP system or Accounting Software implementation then it’s likely the software would be seen as a hindrance rather than a help.

2. Documenting current processes and determining project goals

Implementing a new system is a chance to identify the processes you currently have and improve upon or adapt them to streamline them. You should take the opportunity to gather requirements from all users of the system in order to avoid having to pay more to add functionality at a later date.

During the requirements gathering phase you should be aware of the business goals you want to meet, and try not to get dazzled by features which aren’t critical to business success. It’s also important to make sure you have a strategy to guide your selection process.

3. Lack of User Involvement

When selecting a new system, it’s important to involve a cross-functional team in order to ensure you gather requirements across the business. While it is an IT solution, it’s critical you involve stakeholders representing each of the departments that the new system will impact.

4. Lack of Resource to Support Implementation

It’s important to apportion internal (and external) resource according to a realistic project plan. More often than not, businesses risk implementation failure because they don’t dedicate enough time to the project. The extra time demand across the business should be considered before allocating resource to ensure success.

5. No Documentation to Support Implementation and New Processes

Many organisations forget to document current processes vs new processes, causing confusion when the system eventually goes live. By involving a team across the business to document the processes they gain better understanding of what is and isn’t working, and how to improve the processes using the new system.

6. Lack of Training

Your system is only as good as the people who use it. Training is imperative to the adoption and success of a new system, and if employees have not been trained properly you can’t expect them to make use of the full functionality within the new system.

7. Choosing Cost Over Benefits

It’s important to remember that you should be picking your new system based on the long term benefits your business could achieve rather than focusing too much on the cost. Software from one vendor may cost more than others, but this could be for a specific reason which you may not initially see. Ultimately you need to weigh up the benefits of spending more upfront against the financial benefits over a period of time.

8. Choosing the Wrong Vendor

Regardless of functionality and cost, a successful implementation of a new system is reliant on the vendor’s ability to deliver a successful project. During your selection process you should be sure to assess the capability and success of your vendor with previous projects, as well as asking them to talk you through their project and implementation methodology.

To find more about ERP or Accounting software implementation, contact us.

Vicki joined Sapphire in 2008, and has 19 years’ experience working with clients from a variety of industries. With a background in Project Management, Vicki has managed multiple global rollouts, and is responsible for overseeing Sapphire’s projects internationally. She currently manages the global projects team and is well placed to offer best practice advice to ensure upgrades and implementations run smoothly. Vicki is a member of a local running club, and also a keen netball player.

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