Companies that succeed are the ones that embrace change. They have the built-in flexibility to respond to fast-changing business conditions. The power to change is achieved through business transformation. And technology and business transformation go hand in hand. Having the ability to transform and change business processes and systems quickly is a big differentiator.
Software projects invariably run late and over budget, and often fail to bring about real business value at the time that they are delivered. And this is not just hearsay. According to Gartner, “various studies across the decades have shown that 70 percent of IT projects fail to deliver their expected benefits.”
What goes wrong
From my experience, there are a number of different reasons and it can vary on a project by project basis. But in a nutshell, the common pitfalls are:
- Poorly defined scope and objectives
- Poor collaboration between business and IT
- Users are resistant to having change enforced upon them
Secret to success
Success relies on having a structured yet agile approach which delivers incremental value with a clear link to the organization’s key strategic priorities. It all starts with thinking differently. Top down not bottom up.
Determining why an organization performs certain activities is often a neglected step between scoping a business transformation initiative and beginning process modeling and analysis. A complete business model capturing all the key elements of the organization, can provide a reference model. It gives you the much needed end-to-end visibility. The model indicates where enterprise value is linked with the different parts of an organization, and how high-level processes can impact value creation. Defining the scope and objectives for the transformation. Leading to accelerated cost savings and more long-term business value. This model also defines the information architecture. What is needed from the underlying IT systems to support such a transformation.
ERP engineered for agility
Thinking differently also extends to how the project is run. The typical waterfall approach of requirements, specifications, design, development, test and launching the new solution on the unsuspecting population six months or a year later has had its day. Success comes from high fidelity engineering where relevant skills from different expertise domains are actively involved in the project from day one. This agile development approach ensures that business and IT work in harmony. Business users are able to shape and define what the new solution looks like and how it functions. The approach dramatically increases user adoption. Collaboration between business and IT is at the heart of this approach.
Single picture of the truth
The approach should map your business processes, workflows, KPIs as well as roles and responsibilities. Responsibilities should be defined for each role, capturing your governance. Processes need to be translated down to the execution level. Processes, performance and people have to be aligned.
Making the dream a reality
What I’ve described isn’t just my dream. It does exist. In a single solution. It’s called IFS Corporate Performance Management. I’d be happy to tell you more about it….