The consequences of a failed SaaS implementation
Central to many companies operations, the consequences of a failed ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) or CRM (Customer Relationship Management) implementation can be serious – as seen in some high profile ERP disaster examples. Recently noticing an upward trend in failed Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central SaaS (Software as a Service – will also be referred to as BC SaaS throughout) implementations, we were curious to find out why.
So here we look to understand the whys and how these can be avoided, and discuss where TVision are getting things right. Hopefully our findings will help you choose the right partner in the first instance, or move your BC SaaS implementation to TVision to make sure you get the desired results.
Failed Business Central SaaS implementations and why they happens
Talking to new prospects whose implementations have failed, and clients who want to move to SaaS from on-premise NAV, we’ve found that the overriding reason for a failed BC SaaS implementation is not approaching the SaaS project strategically.
Discussions should have been had at prospect meetings and/or discovery days to understand requirements and talk about existing technology within your business. This the most important first step. Without this, your partner will be walking into the unknown, and likewise, you’ll receive something you ultimately didn’t want.
A misunderstanding of the licence subscription process or Office 365 tenant, etc. for BC SaaS, have also resulted in failed implementations. The whole project then becomes more costly, and so unplanned costs can creep up if technical requirements are not understood early in the process.
We have also seen these other factors which have impacted on failed implementations:
- Using outdated NAV Time & Materials quotes for BC SaaS
- Trying to apply standard NAV implementation and project management processes to BC SaaS – a SaaS implementation needs new methodology
- Offering a basic package with very limited consultancy/project management time or ‘plug and play’ offerings, without realising that customers still need guidance and help with their implementation
- Microsoft Partners not giving BC SaaS opportunities adequate time as their main focus may not be on the Business Central solution
- Partners who recommend alternative solutions which may provide a bigger initial licence revenue.
Communication on both sides is key to avoid wasting time, and most importantly, money. This therefore means having an effective implementation project plan, with adequate project management in place, and a strong implementation team/stakeholders to run it.
So what should a BC SaaS implementation look like?
What does success look like to you?
In order for your implementation to be successful, before you even decide on what partner to go with, you should ask your implementation consultant the following:
- Do you have experience of our market sector and business model?
- Is there a standard project plan for BC SaaS and does this satisfy our requirements?
- Can you suggest what resource will be required from our side for a successful project?
- How much assistance and support will we be receiving during the implementation?
- How much experience do you have in successfully delivering and implementing Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central SaaS?
- How can you support us post Go Live and as our needs change in the future?
If they can answer these questions in the way you want, you’re off to a winning start. Here are more details on questions to ask your implementation consultants.
By having a better understanding of each other’s needs, you can then start to build a successful project plan. The following thought piece explains a five step implementation process in more detail.
Then you need to rally your troops – because successful projects have complete stakeholder buy-in. A good implementation team will have a steering committee. This will be made up of senior leaders and management who are responsible for defining and managing the key objectives for the implementation project. There will also be a project sponsor, a champion who is on your side and wants the project to be a success.
You’ll then need a project team with a project manager. This group should be made up of a good mix of personalities, and have the ability to focus on the task in hand as well as plan and identify essential changes to the project – ensuring it remains on course.
It’s important to identify who your super-users will be too, as these are the people on the frontline. Working with your partner or project manager they will be the ones conducting train the trainers’ workshops and will conduct user and/or development testing. They will also provide user assistance when needed once your implementation has gone live.
In our experience of running many successful projects, you can also find more information on key members of an implementation team here.
Where TVision are succeeding
Approaching all our clients and prospects with attention and care, we pride ourselves on our attention to detail, really listening to needs, planning requirements and applying a strategic thought process to each customer who wants BC SaaS with a consultative approach. We believe this is key in avoiding a failed Business Central SaaS implementation.
We continuously look at requirements, assess which packages are the best fit, and see where additional help might be needed. This is clearly best practice for any consultancy or project management related task.
Assessing a customer’s project team, resource availability and skills, we then highlight any gaps or help create realistic timescales with the people you have.
Two decades of successful ERP implemenations
Historically a NAV partner of 20 years, we recognised early on that BC SaaS was the way our industry was heading and would soon be adopted by both existing clients and new clients alike. We therefore decided to change our internal processes before BC SaaS was released, to be ready for the new way of doing things. Futureproofing not only our business but yours as well, we now have a strong understanding of how BC SaaS works, and how it should work for you.
With our own in-house, UK based developers, we’re better placed to start or move over to extensions for customisations, quickly and easily.
Offering realistic packages for business requirements and processes, rather than focusing purely on functionality, we make sure these are always fully explained so there are no hidden/unexpected costs.
With over 20 years’ experience in ERP, if you’re ready for change in IT business solutions, change management and you’re considering Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central SaaS, talk to us and forge an alliance with an implementation partner who’ll give you the peace of mind that your investment is in safe hands. We can help you avoid a failed BC SaaS implementation.
Contact the TVision team today, and we’ll show you how to make it happen.