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Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Software - digital transformation - Rous County Council

Last Post 3/08/2023 1:31:18 PM by Riverina Water County Council. 3 replies.
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Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Software - digital transformation - Rous County Council

16-06-2023 01:28 PM
 
brendan.guiney@waterdirectorate.asn.au
by brendan.guiney@waterdirectorate.asn.au
Joined 07-06-2019 12:25 PM
Posts 6
Rous County Council has embarked on a digital transformation project. Our primary focus is on our Asset Management/Maintenance, Finance, CRM and Payroll systems. Human Resources, Contracts Management and Document Management will form our secondary scope. We are looking for some insight from other like organisations who have undertaken this process recently.
As we are a County Council, we work a little differently from a Local Council. Our work is in flood mitigation, bulk water supply, weed management and bush regeneration. This means we maintain a network of assets (for example pipelines, which cover large areas, and dams), deal with weed incursions and upkeep of areas, undertake bush regeneration projects, and supply both bulk and retail water.
We would like to learn from others who have travelled down this digital transformation path, particularly with respect to the rationale for system selection and the ‘traps and tricks’ that make for a successful project.
Thank you!
Martin Burt, ERP Project Manager, martin.burt@rous.nsw.gov.au
Marit Schallert, Assets Systems Project Manager, marit.schallert@rous.nsw.gov.au

Re: Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Software - digital transformation - Rous County Council

22-06-2023 10:14 AM
 
Brendan Guiney
by Brendan Guiney
Joined 02-08-2019 03:32 PM
Posts 18
Not sure if everyone has seen this, so re-posting! Cheers, Brendan

Re: Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Software - digital transformation - Rous County Council

27-06-2023 01:15 PM
 
carlos.sousa@ontoit.com
by carlos.sousa@ontoit.com
Joined 25-10-2022 12:19 PM
Posts 2
Dear Martin and Marit,

Congratulations on initiating Rous County Council's digital transformation project! Undertaking such an endeavour can bring significant benefits to your organisation's operations and efficiency.
As a consultant with experience with digital business systems used by Councils and Utilities, specifically EAM and its integration with ERP and CRM, I hope I can share some valuable insights and lessons learned. It is not an extensive list, but here are some key traps and tips for your consideration:
  1. Poor or no proper project management: This significant endeavour requires efficient project management to ensure buy-in from stakeholders, avoid scope creep, budget overruns, lengthy implementation, frustration among the business and end-users, and poor value outcomes. You should establish clear project governance and appoint a dedicated project manager, or a program manager with project managers experienced in business systems projects. A key part of management of systems projects is change management. You should develop a change management plan from the beginning of the project to ensure user buy-in and adoption.
  2. Unclear business systems boundaries and responsibilities: Define how different management systems (e.g., finance/asset management/CRM, etc) will be delineated, their boundaries established, their ownership determined, and how they will interact/interface with one another.
  3. Avoid the temptation to pursue an overly complex one-stop solution: It is essential to prioritize simplicity and ensure the chosen solution meets your specific business requirements. Complex systems that try to embed multiple systems together may be harder to manage, are unlikely to meet all user needs, and are very difficult to improve over time. Moreover, the owneship of such system may be difficult to govern, since it is trying to cater to multiple business units with differnt priorities.
  4. Be cautious about automation of system interfaces: During scoping, quantify the information transfer required between systems and evaluate whether a fully automated interface is necessary. For small/medium organizations, manual processes with well-documented procedures are often the most practical and easier to maintain in the long term. While implementing an automated interface may seem cost-effective initially, it can become very expensive to support, requiring vendor assistance to address issues, accommodate changes in systems, processes, master data configuration, and system updates.
  5. [b]Do not expect the tool to define your business processes:[/b] Before implementing the system, map your current core business processes, (e.g. customer requests, PM and WO management, asset capture and update, condition assessments, cost capture, etc). The tool should be designed for your processes, not the other way around. Also use the opportunity to identify exceptions and gaps, and define improvement plans to ensure user buy-in.
  6. Develop a roadmap over several years (3-5 or more): Digital transformation is a long-term journey. Start with a minimum viable product and support your tools until they become business as usual. Ensure that you are continuously monitoring the system and data performance and that your people are trained and using the system properly. Once it is established and you can assure that it is sustainable, then continuously improve the system in small steps. Ensure your improvements can be justified and sill be sustainable in the long term with available resources.
  7. [b]Involve end-users in the scoping of the solution:[/b] Engage your end-users to avoid implementing systems that are too complicated or do not meet their needs. Aim for system democratisation by documenting processes, providing user training, and have processes and resources to ongoingly monitor data quality and address issues, cinluding feedback channels (see also below on data governance).
  8. Support reporting development: Allocate resources for reporting development and reporting process documentation. Developing useful reports takes time (e.g. you will need to ensure the data is collected first) and several iterations, so ensure you have the capacity to address evolving business needs and avoid reliance on a single reporting resource without documentation. Your reporting should evolve over time, for example you are likely to need to focus on data collection and data quality, then move to simple metrics and KPIs, to then more advanced analysis when you have enough data. This will take many years, so go small first and then build on it.
  9. Ensure the sustainability of the system: Design a system that will cope with your resource constrains. Consider resource needs to use the system on a day-to-day basis, to support users, to support business reporting, to manage interfaces. Also plan for business continuity: plan for key resources leaving (e.g. reporting and system support), document your key processes, and create transition plans.
  10. Poor data governance and quality management: Establish clear data governance policies and procedures to ensure data integrity, accuracy, and consistency across systems. Define data ownership, establish data standards, and implement regular data quality checks. This will help maintain the reliability and effectiveness of your digital systems.
  11. [b]Disengaged vendors:[/b] Select vendors that operate during Australian business hours, have demonstrated experience with your type of assets and organisation, and can support you in the long term. Having a quick chat with them is often enough to identify red flags (e.g. not understanding your business, overall requirements, risks, etc). If you rely on them to manage the implementation, get them to submit you an example project management plan before engaging them.
Overall, you can address some of these traps by appointing experienced project management personnel, involving stakeholders including future end-users, conducting scoping and business process workshops, aiming for simplicity, and planning for long-term improvements.
I hope these insights will prove valuable to your digital transformation project.
I am also happy to discuss with you further should you need any assistance.
Best of luck with your project!
Carlos Sousa, Senior Associate
+61 432 153 798
carlos.sousa@ontoit.com
ontoit.com

Re: Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Software - digital transformation - Rous County Council

03-08-2023 01:31 PM
 
Riverina Water County Council
by Riverina Water County Council
Joined 01-01-0001 12:00 AM
Posts 31
Hi Martin and Marit, Riverina Water County Council have been currently implementing a new ERP. You may like to contact us regarding the project and our experiences to date.
Regards,
Jason Ip jip@rwcc.nsw.gov.au
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