ERP Implementation Tip #5: Build Your ERP Core Team to Win

Tip #5:  Build Your ERP Core Team to Win

Think of a professional sports team (I think of the Montreal Canadiens).  Management picks the best players it can to try to win the championship.  Though it picks different people to fill different roles, each player is hoped to be an “A” player.  Intangibles – such as team chemistry – also factor strongly in player selection.

An ERP project’s core team should be treated like a professional sports team.  The project creates a pressure-cooker of an environment:  time lines are short, stress is high and workloads are heavy.  It demands high-performance.  As a result, those selected for the ERP core team need to be the most skilled, the most experienced and the most qualified.

In addition to the project manager, the team should be made up of functional leads, selected end-users and (usually) external functional consultants.  The external consultants must possess product-related functional and technical knowledge.  In relative order of importance, all of the core team members should possess the following qualities:

  • General business knowledge and related operational experience;
  • Strong leadership and delegation skills, and a willingness to work in the trenches; and
  • Excellent verbal and written skills, and an ability to communicate effectively from the level of senior managers down to the shop-floor.

These qualities also promote cross-functionality – the IT project equivalent of team chemistry.  For example, general business knowledge and strong communication skills help core team members manage the upstream and downstream impacts of their decisions.

In next week’s ERP implementation tip, I’ll talk about how the ERP core team kicks off the project.

Good luck with your ERP implementation projects!

Your POV (post comments below)

  • Who assembled the ERP core team for your ERP implementatio project?
  • If you could build a dream-team core team, what qualities would be on your wish-list?
  • How did you address weak areas in your core team?

In this series of weekly ERP project management tips, we walk you through an ERP implementation project using Pemeco’s “Milestone Deliverables” project management methodology.

You can buy our project management book and CD of template forms “Milestone Deliverables: The Hands-On Approach to Implementing ERP Projects”. Click here to learn more. Learn about our ERP implementation services by clicking here.