ERP Consultants



Hiring an ERP Implementer



It has been our repeated observation (over hundreds of projects) that it is not possible to know, with much precision, how much implementation consulting services will be needed by a company implementing enterprise software. In general, this is because of the varying statuses of companies that will be implementing and using new enterprise software and status of the selected implementer.


Related to the buying company’s status, the project cost and time duration of the implementation effort will be more or less time based on:

For example: If a company (that will be using new ERP) is highly prepared, the skilled implementer may require 800 consulting hours to reach exceptional results. If the same company is largely unprepared, it may take 1600 consulting hours (twice the resources) to reach a point to finally terminate the project—this is even with a skilled and experienced implementer.


Based on all these factors, no candidate implementer can be certain about the implementation effort needed for a particular company. In reality, they have very little certainty in general. NOTE: Any presentation of Implementation Costs and Approach from an implementer is a sales document intending to impress the potential buyer and very likely a ‘wishful thinking’ cost scenario. In In other words there is nothing that can be said or documented at the point before an implementation starts (words, proposals, contracts, etc.) that will accurately reflect the actual effort needed.


For this reason the SoftSelect process does not use implementation quotes or soft representations from implementers to influence business software selections or selection of an implementer for a particular business software. The SoftSelect process also does not use as a selection influencer the candidate implementer’s detailed Statement Of Work (SOW) documents as they can only be a very general and inherently inaccurate estimates based on the factors listed above (see more in section below on SOWs).


Actual Cost Control: The SoftSelect process highly values putting in place proper resources for the implementation and lowering the barriers to improved project results. While arranging for these proper resources the SoftSelect process endeavors to control implementation project costs by:

  1. Right team: Locating proper experience, skill and capacity of the key implementer consultants which has a direct tie to project achievement and lower costs to reach this achievement. To be offer specific implementation consultants, the candidate implementer will need the estimated implementation start date.

  2. Hourly rates: Effective hourly billing rates for implementer’s personnel that are fixed from the start of the major implementation effort to a point in which the new enterprise software is comprehensively implemented (typically 8 to18 months). Obtain hourly rates for the different resources contemplated to be applied to the implementation project and not a blended rate.
  3. Remote service delivery: Use of effective and forward-thinking mechanisms for remote service delivery resulting in easier achievement of many specific duties (e.g. activity that require a few hours at a specific time) and lower travel costs.
  4. Contracts fixed: Commercial terms that positively affect cost control by enabling buyer to exert its legitimate commercial interests to fix situations having to do with implementation personnel, billing issues, and other matters. In this light the SoftSelect services contract expert will review and adjust service provider contracts using a checklist of key objectives and less important objects, as well as fixing problems with existing contract language. This is a process that is not really ‘negotiating’ but instead a process that is endeavoring to fix these one-sided documents.
  5. Staffing options: Having clear options ready for sourcing other independent consultants for a particular purpose if the original implementer is not effectively filling the need.