Friday, July 30, 2010

BilkentMBA2010, Lessons Learned, Week 4

The difference between leadership and management can be summarized as follows: leadership is the process of influencing others, and facilitating collective efforts to achieve objectives. A leader should also consider what the team members want, and should have followers. Management is more related to work structure and systems, he has formal authority and subordinates. As a part of Global ERP Implementations, Self-Managing Virtual (SMV) Teams can be analyzed. They are not leader dependent teams but decision making is done collectively by team members. Besides showing leadership in virtual teams is harder. In shared Leadership individuals share the leader role. In self-leadership, you get yourself do something. These leaders create role-models for their teams.

There are 2 kinds of leadership behaviors: Task- oriented and Relationship oriented. Task- oriented leaders configure how to change processes. Relationship oriented leadership can be also used in SMV’s on e-mails, with a positive group atmosphere being created and asking people’s opinions and encouraging outsiders to participate. Relationship oriented leaders may also use boundary spanning which means they connect team to outsiders and act as knowledge brokers.

During the FNSS company presentation, we learned that ERP implementation may not necessarily reduce the number of processes or reduce the workload in a company. Rather it would be more useful in increasing the quality of data and quality of the processes in the company.

ERP Options in implementation strategy can be discussed under the following dimensions:
a. Timeline: In Big-Bang Implementation, the system changes all at once. The advantage is that it offers a shorter period of uncertainty. Phased implementation’s advantage is that it becomes easier for the employees to adapt themselves and through learning effects, each round there is an increasing performance of adaptation. Another advantage of phased implementation is that is easier to finance because you can make incremental payments. In fact this 2 approaches are two ends of a spectrum and companies should use a combination of both according to their specific conditions and needs.

b. Staff/Resources: Resources can be obtained by outsourcing or in-house. However, it is advised that using a combination of them. For instance, a company cannot do whole process by in-house, because everyone cannot be IT specialists, some consultants will be needed. On the other hand, it cannot be 100% outsourced, because some in-house knowledge will be always necessary.

c. Customization Level: should also be managed. The original ERP software can be added some modules or some integration points can be added to combine company’s old software with the new. However, it is costly to upgrade them and to use patchs; therefore, customization should be used only if it is absolutely necessary. Being somewhere in between fully customized system and as-is Implementation; and preferably being closer to As-Is implementation on the continuum is the best.
There is also a second continuum in this dimension. Customization takes place on one side and Business Process Reengineering (BPR) on the other side. If you do not customize, you need to change your own processes and it is better to be close to BPR side of the continuum while using a combination of both.

ASAP (Accelerated ASAP) Methodology includes the following steps:
1. Project Preparation: high level plan is prepared, project team is organized.

2. Business Blueprint preparation: Business processes are defined. FRICE control list is used in this phase (Form, Report, Interface, Conversion & Enhancement)

3. Realization : This step has a heavy workload including unit test (for individual transactions), integration test (testing for coherence among all business processes working together), stress test (to see whether the system can handle full-capacity workload), and support packs- upgrading testing (done after implementation a few times a year to detect bugs in critical cycles). Using simulation tools is recommended in this stress test. The realization phase ends after final-user acceptance is obtained.

4. Final Preparation: Final system rehearsal should be made in this phase and it is better to simulate how you would go-live. Final-system cutover should be decided, meaning a time to go-live should be scheduled to shut down old and to move to the new system. This cutover time should be chosen so that it does not disturb work-flow. For instance, it can be performed at the weekend. In this phase there is possibility of having parallel systems: old and new systems being used together for a certain time period to avoid risk of failure. However, this parallel structure is time-consuming and costly therefore, it should last only for a short period.

5. Go-Live &Support: There is a move from project environment to live production environment in this phase. For the first 1-2 weeks there should be a review of issue log, meaning periodic meetings at the beginning of implementation as status update. Help desk support by super-users should be provided.

6. Continuous Improvement and process reviews should be performed.

1 comment:

Cheapermobiles said...

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