The Role of ERP Consultants

With the recent advancements in business world, ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) has grown to unparalleled heights and the role of ERP consultants has also greatly evolved. ERP consultants are professionals who render their valuable services related to planning, managing, coordinating and effectively implement the ERP system of an organization.

The duties performed by ERP consultants extends to ensure an effective implementation of the ERP system, to make sure that the objectives for which it was implemented are duly achieved well on-time. He is also entrusted with the task of making a detailed study plan and use his expertise towards ensuring that the system capabilities and organizational objectives are effectively matched. This is the most important step in the formulation of an ERP system, because unless the system is being able to match with objectives, the objectives would not be attained and there will be variances in the projected and actual objectives.

ERP Consultants may also be assigned the task of imparting education and training to the existing and prospective users of the ERP system. They must make sure that all the users are able to get a complete insight into the ERP process else the complete objective of installing the ERP will be doomed. The communication of plans and benefits to the users must be clear, precise and not vague. They can take the support of high-level management in achieving this responsibility. By doing this, they can ensure that business objectives are attained and business solutions are provided to meet the organizational requirements for the purpose of creating a sound and effective business environment.

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The various tasks that are performed by ERP consultants are as follows:

* Selection of the ERP package.
* Creating equilibrium between system capabilities and organizational objectives.
* Present and prospective system analysis and documentation.
* Development, management, implementation and regular assessment of the ERP system.
* Imparting education and training to existing and prospective users.
* Ensuring steps for effective implementation of ERP.
* Assisting in installation and configuration of the ERP system.
* Making sure that the ERP system can be updated to satisfy changing business needs.
* They analyze the requirements of the business and provide an ERP consulting strategy to satisfy business requirements.
* They assist by providing their expertise on specialized software modules.

The responsibilities that are entrusted to ERP consultants also include the creation of a sound work-flow procedure, assisting in report-generation and providing business solutions to complex business problems. They are an integral part of the consulting team and management, which ensures that the objectives of the organization are attained by effective planning, coordination, automation and implementation of the ERP system.

Thus it can be rightly said that the role of ERP consultants is pivotal to the requirements of the business and they provide a supportive hand in the achievement of the business objectives in the most effective and efficient manner. They are, therefore, considered to be an integral part of the organization's decision-making team.

by Linda J Bruton

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