Whether still searching or already in firm hands: The provider briefing is a real opportunity to get the ERP provider with all the important information about your company.
If you read our articles frequently, you will have noticed that we urge companies to provide their ERP provider with enough information. After all, every customer is a little different and should and can be catered for accordingly - if you know how.
Now the legitimate question arises: what information should be passed on to the provider? And when?
The supplier briefing
A good time to start is already in the ERP selection process. Already in the search for the right provider, what you need can also be THE decisive criterion. A provider with great references and versatile solutions looks good - but if they don't understand you and your company, the project is doomed to failure. A good provider does not have to be the right provider. A popular means of better assessing ERP providers is the so-called "provider briefing".
Here, it should become clear to the various providers - or even already to a specific provider - what you are about and what the project should be about. Often, the presentation of the company, a company tour and the description of the processes are on the agenda.
What sounds mundane here, however, are exactly the things that are at stake. So let's go a little deeper into the individual points.
When you present your company, it is best to include all the people involved in the ERP project. Depending on the size, this may be more or less, all or only the department heads. On the one hand, this makes the complexity of your company clear and the contact persons get a face. Yes, that never hurt anyone in an IT project.
Otherwise: You don't want to sell anything here, but put a lot of money in your hand to improve and renew the processes in your company. Disclose your key figures, present your core products and/or services and show the structure behind the scenes. Your plans for the future are also important.
Important information here can be, for example: the departments and interactions, external service provider, locations, foreign countries or new markets.
According to the motto "double is better", you can directly show what you have just presented during the company tour. Make sure that there is enough time for questions during the tour - and that someone is present who can answer the questions. Ergo: For project questions, the company or project management and - depending on the size of the company - someone from the relevant department. This way you can not only answer a lot in advance, but also prevent misunderstandings.
Slowly, we come to the core topic: the processes. What are the central processes in your company and what of them is already being handled with software and what needs to be integrated into the new ERP system. Exactly what these are usually depends on the industry. It is important here that you do not carelessly skip over your existing processes, but describe them as concretely as possible. After all, it is then the task of the ERP provider to find a suitable, perhaps better solution for you. Application examples are helpful here. And here, too, don't just go into the standard case - but also describe special cases.
With this information, the ERP providers can immediately suggest concrete solutions to your problem and you can choose based on these suggestions - and not on well-intentioned but ineffective blanket offers. Even if you have already decided on an ERP vendor, a vendor briefing is helpful and provides a good basis for the project to save misunderstandings and thus time and money.
Read HERE even more on the topic of ERP project.