Principles for a Seamless JD Edwards EnterpriseOne Upgrade
Spending on enterprise resource planning (ERP) software will peak at $783 billion in 2022. To put that figure in perspective, that's almost 14% more than the GDP of Saudi Arabia. But while the popularity of ERPs is on the rise, some struggle with implementation, especially regarding upgrading. This holds for several popular options, including JD Edwards EnterpriseOne (JDE E1).
Many organizations upgrade to JDE E1 because it's one of the most effective tools for collecting and analyzing business data and building automation. But if the upgrade is seamless, without too many hiccups stalling the process, you can retain stakeholder support and save hard-earned funds.
The good news is that there are principles you can follow to execute a smooth JDE EnterpriseOne upgrade.
Guiding Principles for a Successful JDE E1 Upgrade
You can use the guiding principles below as your JDE E1 upgrade checklist. You can minimize the chance of a failed upgrade by taking the following steps:
Assessing Your Current Environment
Taking a long, hard look at your current environment lets you pinpoint areas for improvement. For example, if you've been using a previous version of JDE E1 for several years, weeks before the upgrade:
• Identify your paint points.
• Understand the gaps that need to be filled to address each pain point.
• Analyze your systems to discover additional ways your upgrade can enable greater efficiency.
Setting Clear Objectives
Setting concrete objectives gets all stakeholders on the same page and can build support for your upgrade, particularly from those executing it.
For instance, let's say your inventory department sees an opportunity to sell items directly to customers, shipping them from your supplier instead of holding them in-house. JDE E1 makes managing this kind of dropshipping arrangement straightforward. You can set an objective aligned with a goal, such as "Upgrade to JDE E1 to automate the order fulfillment of at least 50% of items within the first six months."
Planning and Resource Allocation
Planning and resource allocation involve:
• Agreeing on the scope of the project
• Choosing a reasonable timeline
• Figuring out who to mobilize
• Allocating budgetary resources
• Setting up deliverables and milestones
When you get these pieces of the upgrade in place, it's easy for everyone to understand and contribute to your upgrade roadmap.
Testing and Validation
Testing and validation are essential to minimizing the chances of your upgrade failing early.
For example, testing will play a critical role if a manufacturer wants to use JDE E1 to improve its material requirements planning (MRP). During testing, JDE E1 may generate figures that make it look like the manufacturer needs fewer materials than it does. This can stall operations and delay fulfillment times. Running several tests can help avoid serious problems down the road.
Change Management and User Training
Change comes with every upgrade, even if you're simply going for the most recent software version. To minimize the ripple effects of change:
• Spend time predicting the changes you're likely to face.
• Give those working with impacted systems as much heads-up as possible.
• Use a trusted JDE upgrade partner to develop user training programs. • Consult with a JDE partner to see if some elements of the upgrade can be phased in to minimize the impact of change on more vulnerable departments and systems.
Data Migration and Conversion
Data migration and conversion are common considerations when upgrading because data is the backbone of JDE E1.
For instance, your organization may need to consider the following:
• Mapping data fields
• Cleaning data that needs to be brought into your upgraded version of JDE E1
• Testing your system to see if the integrated data works according to expectations
Collaboration with Vendors and Partners
Knowledgeable partners can save you considerable time and energy. They know what to expect from a technical angle, the challenges that may pop up, and how to deal with them.
For example, it can be challenging to manage multiple data feeds, especially when they come from different physical sites. But an experienced JDE partner understands the snags you may experience with data retrieval and processing, regardless of where the information comes from.
Continuous Monitoring and Post-Upgrade Support
The actual upgrade is only phase one of the process. By continually monitoring your upgraded version and ensuring ongoing support, you can catch and address obstacles before they hurt operational efficiency.
For example, suppose you want to use JDE E1 to automate the entry of orders. But there's a disconnect between your e-commerce solution and the Sales Order Management module. As a result, an employee enters each order manually, killing their efficiency and risking burnout.
By monitoring the upgrade, you can catch the issue early on, address the problem, and give your employee more time and energy for other tasks.
GSI: Your Expert EnterpriseOne Upgrade Partner
With the above steps and principles, you can prevent many problems that prevent companies from getting the most from their JDE E1 upgrades. Your current environment will guide much of your planning and resource allocation. By testing the system before going entirely live, you can avoid unpleasant surprises down the line. And by supporting users with training and post-upgrade services, you create a more comfortable experience for all stakeholders.
GSI is a trusted JDE upgrade partner, with experts on staff ready to guide you through every step of the process—in a way suited to your specific business model.
Contact GSI to see the difference experienced professionals can make for your organization.