For those of you who are NFL sports fans, you’ve likely noticed there are some NFL teams whose offenses produce better when they play in hurry-up mode – the way in which all teams play toward the end of the game when they’re behind and need to score rapidly. The current day Indianapolis Colts strike me as this kind of team. With Peyton Manning calling the plays from the line of scrimmage, the Colts’ players stay focused and execute in a highly-efficient manner.
Let’s contrast this to the slow, methodical, grind-it-out NFL offenses that take long periods of time and numbers of downs to get to the end zone. Sure, there are successful scoring drives that can take twelve to fifteen plays to completion; however, the more times a team has to snap the ball and run a play the more opportunities there are for issues to sneak in that stall or end the drive – a penalty, a turnover, or even one dropped pass or missed block can result in an unsuccessful drive.
From my perspective, ERP implementation and NFL offenses have a lot in common. They both require a variety of players with varying skill sets and experience levels to play their respective positions for a successful outcome. In the NFL, all of the players know their roles, and there is a sense of urgency to accomplish tasks in an expedient, highly-efficient manner, and measurable progress occurs. The same should be the case to ensure successful ERP implementations.
Players should be educated on what their roles are and how what they do fits into the overall plans for the ERP implementation. And, while I completely understand that personnel’s day-to-day responsibilities can get in the way of having sufficient time to devote to the implementation project, my recommendation is that by running the ERP implementation like a two-minute offense, key personnel will feel the sense of urgency to execute in a highly-efficient manner thus producing a successful outcome. To contrast this, if there is an expectation that a project can take as long as people want or has sufficient slack time in the project plan, there is a lack of urgency that keeps most personnel from prioritizing the time to accomplish what is necessary to produce a successful result with the implementation.