The ERP systems have become increasingly popular in business organizations, including those that are small in size and scope. SMEs have many of the same needs as large enterprises; however, SMEs face different challenges. The most prevalent challenge facing SMEs is insufficient resources, especially limited financial resources and capabilities. SMEs, because they are smaller, are often not willing to invest significant resources in complex ERP implementation processes, as their size makes them more vulnerable than larger companies. As such, the SME niche requires specific research and analysis so that small-sized companies’ needs, with regard to ERP, can be better met.  However, the issues present among small-sized companies are diverse and are different depending on the magnitude of organization.  The key factors that serve to promote the success of ERP include software development, testing and troubleshooting, top management support, effective training, teamwork and composition, appropriate business and legacy systems, and effective decision-making.

erp implementation

ERP Implementation for Large-Sized Organizations

The major hindrances limiting firms in developing countries with regard to their abilities to adopt ERP systems include economic status, low IT maturity, and lack of proper government regulations, firm size, and lack of business process management experience. When dealing with large enterprises, some of the key factors that need to be considered before implementation is attempted include the benefits ERP will bring, barriers, cost implication, internal and the external pressures, IT sophistication and infrastructure, and the support framework for the integration technology and packages.  The organizational culture is one of the key factors that influence the success or failure of ERP projects. For these systems to be successful in large enterprises, it is important that there is strong management support, vendor support, and the involvement of organizational members from all ranks in the planning and implementation. User education, as addressed previously, is also important. Other issues that should be considered include the ability of included team members to work in a team, team composition, BPR and software modification, product selection, proper education and training of managers and employees, and personnel resources. Other variables include top management commitment and overall project management.

Analyzed research that aimed to determine the design and issues related to risk factors in ERP implementation. Their study was based on two case studies involving two large manufacturing companies in India. The researchers ranked all of the ERP system risk factors, which included poor management of the project and no user involvement or training. Some of the design risk factors they identified included poor integration of technology and planning as well as poor system design.  Considered a case analysis based on the experiences of a major Chinese enterprise, ElectronicCo, during its implementation of EPR systems. In addition, the researchers made use of the findings from other studies, which involved research regarding Pakistan’s oil sector; this research aimed at identifying the critical success factors or issues in ERP implementation. Issues that affect the implementation of ERP in SMEs and in large enterprises might differ; however, the implementation approach adopted plays a very vital role.

In conclusion, unless the differences between SME and large companies are clearly outlined, the ERP projects implemented will not necessarily lead to positive outcomes.Therefore, the key factors that affect the implementation and success of ERPs in SMEs include proper project planning, minimal customization of project design, clearly defined goals with an elaborate scope of implementation, and a proper implementation strategy.

Author’s Bio

My name is Dr. George Conley Jr.  I’m a retired Navy Chief Warrant Officer 4 who served 29 honorable years of military service.  I earned Doctorate in Business Administration from Apollos University, M.A. in Business Management from National University, B.S. in Liberal Arts from Excelsior College, and an A.A. in Human Resources Management & Electrical Mechanical Technology from Coastline Community College. I currently work as a government contractor for Epsilon Systems Partners Inc.  I’m also an adjunct professor at Abraham Lincoln University and Apollos University.  I’m an active member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Inc., National Naval Officers Association (NNOA), and National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).   I reside in San Diego, CA with my beautiful family.  I enjoy refereeing high school sports and mentoring young adults.