Most businesses know that an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) tool would simplify their sales, manufacturing, service and product delivery tasks. Yet, ERP implementation and management are challenging tasks. So, companies often rely on an ERP consultant.
In fact, three-quarters of organizations need a consultant’s help with their ERP project. This statistic is true no matter which ERP the company chose, but this article’s focus is on SAP S/4HANA consulting.
We’ll explain how an ERP expert can help you with your ERP project, and how to choose the right SAP HANA consultant.
What Is SAP S/4HANA?
SAP S/4HANA is a comprehensive ERP platform that optimizes business operations and delivers access to real-time data. The system makes it easy for companies to automate their operations and solve problems as they arise. Many large companies use it to handle industry and region-specific functions for specialized applications.
What Is ERP Consulting?
ERP consulting provides ensure a successful implementation of the software, proper training and guidance to your team members. An ERP software consultant helps you get more from your enterprise software by simplifying the implementation process and enhancing your ERP skills.
A consultant’s service scope can scale to meet your business requirements. You could hire an ERP implementation consultant whose service ends after your software launch, or an ERP advisor that will continually answer questions post-implementation.
Common consultant duties include:
- Business analysis
- Custom ERP software process design and configuration
- ERP system integrations
- Getting to know your team and business process
- Upgrading your current ERP to your new one
Why You Need an SAP S/4HANA-Certified ERP Consultant
Not all ERPs are alike. Therefore, if your company chooses S/4HANA, you need an ERP system consultant with SAP HANA experience. In fact, SAP offers a certification program that gives consultants a thorough understanding of the program.
Seek these SAP-certified consultants for the best results on your SAP HANA projects.
Different Types of SAP HANA Consultants
It’s important to choose the right ERP for your business needs. It’s also important to have the right consultants. The following list highlights different types of SAP consultants.
SAP Functional Consultant
An ERP functional consultant is usually the most hands-on with their clients. Their job is to get to know the client’s business, prepare use case documents, configure and test the system to match your process requirements, and design any custom development required.
A good functional consultant can assess the root cause of your problem whether you know it or not. They’ll determine the most beneficial SAP functions based on a high-level description of your needs. Most are also hands-on with your project management tasks.
SAP Basis Consultant
SAP basis consultants monitor the S/4HANA implementation process and any system upgrades so they can provide technical support. Usually, they also perform system health checks and workload analyses for their clients.
Some basis consultants work with the technical team to build custom solutions for you. Technical consultants are developers and basis consultants communicate with them to ensure they address any of your common challenges.
SAP Technical Consultant
SAP technical consultants are information technology experts who focus on designing, implementing, and customizing SAP systems for clients. Many technical consultants are JAVA or ABAP developers. A technical consultant may also have a background as an ERP engineer.
You might work with a team that includes all of the above, or one person who fulfills multiple roles. Gauge your partner or consultant’s expertise to ensure you’re getting the right people for your requirements.
Choosing the Right ERP Specialist for your SAP S/4HANA Project
Finding an ERP professional who knows SAP is your first step. There are several other factors to consider. Look for the following traits when you shop for SAP consulting services.
Transparency matters in any partnership. Watch for transparent sales and marketing strategies and listen for honest opinions during demos.
You want a flexible consultant who can meet your needs, but you don’t want someone who gives you unrealistic expectations. Favor consultants who provide meaningful answers to any question. Avoid ones who dodge questions.
2. Understands Your Digital Ecosystem
Consultants should assess your current digital platform and plan your SAP S/4HANA migration strategy around it. Your ERP is one part of your entire digital ecosystem. So, it’s important to find a consultant who’s willing to work with it.
Different ecosystems have different technical requirements. You’ll see more success with a consultant that considers this alongside your business needs.
This consideration can also help increase your adoption rates. Employee resistance to change is the cause of poor adoption in 82% of cases. Working SAP into your current system makes the new ERP feel less like an abrupt change.
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3. Industry Experience
Manufacturing and logistics are the most common industries in the SAP world. However, they’re far from the only industries that benefit from S/4HANA. Seek a consultant that knows your industry.
They’ll be better equipped to coordinate a complete SAP HANA set-up that blends with your industry needs. They may also be able to offer informed advice based on past work with a similar client.
4. Good Communication Skills
You need someone who can explain your ERP’s functions clearly if you want to make the most of it. Additionally, your consultant will play a key role in the planning and execution of your implementation project.
Therefore, opt for someone who works well with your team. A consultant must be able to actively listen to your needs and help you and your colleagues see SAP’s benefits.
Business needs can change unexpectedly. For this reason, agile project planning is important during ERP implementation. Make sure your consultant is aware of and open to dealing with this possibility effectively.
6. Cultural Fit
During your project, ERP consultants become temporary members of your team. To that extent, you will see better results with someone who is a good cultural fit.
Your team will probably respond better to a good culture fit, ultimately leading to better results.
Trust Ameri100’s ERP Professionals to Ease Your SAP Implementation and Adoption Process
Ameri100’s SAP consultants can build the right S/4HANA solution for any scenario. We have a wide range of experience in many industries and a flexible staffing model. We’re open to working with clients who are new to S/4HANA or upgrading their S/4HANA system.
Request a quote and get started on your SAP implementation project today.
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