Five Ways to Improve User Engagement with Your Cloud ERP Solution
Moving to a cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) platform as so many enterprises have brings with it new opportunities to improve user engagement, regardless of whether the cloud-based ERP application is replacing a legacy solution or is the first ERP solution you’re rolling out for your organization.
Here are five ways to improve user engagement with cloud ERP.
1. Create a Cloud ERP Road Map
If you’re making the transition from a legacy on-premises ERP application to a cloud-based solution, it’s important to create a cloud ERP road map to improve user engagement. You can break this road map down into quarterly or monthly feature releases depending on your ERP vendor, solution, and industry. Important information for the road map includes:
· Feature documentation, including a short, descriptive snippet of the feature and links to documentation and training (if available online);
· Date the feature becomes available to users;
· Planned integrations between the ERP software and your other back-end systems; and
· A feedback channel for the new feature or planned integration, such as an email or form link.
This cloud ERP road map should be a living document, available online, that’s accessible to your ERP user community for comment and feedback.
Offering your users training for the new cloud CRM platform is an important part of improving user engagement. Even your more seasoned ERP users can benefit from training on the new features your cloud ERP solution offers.
Classroom training isn’t feasible for every organization, of course. If it isn’t the right fit for your business, consider online training or deskside one-to-one training during the cloud ERP launch. At least, be sure to provide job aids for your cloud ERP system to help your users transition to the new platform.
3.Go Mobile First
Today’s cloud ERP platforms come with robust mobile clients. Including mobile users as part of your cloud ERP rollout ensures that users can access your ERP system anytime, anywhere from their mobile device. Before placing a cloud ERP mobile client in your enterprise app store, take the time to account for any security requirements your security and mobile teams may have in place.
4. Establish an API Steering Committee
A move to cloud ERP brings with it opportunities to use its application programming interface (API) for integration with your other back-end systems. There are two ways it can go. One is that you do nothing with the API. The second way is that you do too much with the API, such as creating integrations that your users aren’t really asking for.
Consider establishing an API steering committee, even if it meets only a few times. Draw members from your business units, IT department, developers, and management.
Use the committee to:
· Educate employees about API integration between the ERP system and other applications;
· Gather and define API integration requirements for ERP and other systems
· Define an ERP integration road map to chart future integration priorities.
5. Build Cloud ERP Advocacy Among Your Business Users
A natural outcome from activities such as a road map and API steering committee should be advocacy for your new cloud ERP. However, your advocacy work isn’t done after those two activities. It’s important to interact directly with your ERP users before, during, and after you launch your cloud ERP system. Advocacy-building activities might include:
· Lunch-and-learn sessions about the cloud ERP system during which users can learn new features and your IT group gets feedback on the new platform;
· Department visits by your cloud ERP administrator to chat with users and get their feedback; and
· Responsive IT service desk communications related to any cloud ERP user issues that may arise.
Cloud ERP in Your EnterpriseDon’t throw out a cloud ERP and forget it: If you do, you’ll be short-changing your corporate ERP efforts and—worst of all—your users. Spending the time to improve user engagement with your cloud ERP system translates into happier, more productive users better equipped to serve your customers and business growth.