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ERP Implementation 2019
Which Consulting Partner Is the Right Fit for Your ERP Implementation?

author - Warren Whitford
Warren Whitford
author - Jennifer Hickenlooper
Jennifer Hickenlooper
December 9, 2019 | Read Time: 6  minutes

Static for many years, the ERP software market has seen a resurgence of energy, thanks in part to the introduction of several cloud solutions. With this uptick in purchasing has come increased need for partners who can help organizations implement the technology and oversee the significant change management and training required—in fact, a number of interviewed organizations note that success might depend more on the implementation partner than on the actual software implemented. While some organizations choose their software vendor to manage the project, others engage a third-party firm. Which type of partner is right for your organization?

ERP Vendor Selection and Implementation Road Map

Before beginning an ERP implementation, healthcare organizations should determine whether their project will be part of a larger business transformation. The answer will influence their choices in each step outlined below.

vendor selection and implementation roadmap

Implementation Services

Option #1: Your ERP Software Vendor

Typically chosen for cost/contracting reasons or because it is assumed software vendor will know their own solution better than third-party firms (sometimes true but not guaranteed). Less likely to excel at change management and business transformation. Organizations may fill these gaps with their own resources or by also engaging a third-party implementation partner.

Clients Dissatisfied with Implementations by Infor

All interviewed Infor consulting services clients report dissatisfaction with their implementation. These clients (all cloud customers) say few Infor consultants had sufficient software knowledge or change management and training expertise. Clients shouldered more work than expected to keep engagements on track and frequently had to escalate issues to Infor executives. Some eventually brought in a third-party firm to salvage the project. Workday’s role in implementations is often more focused on technical aspects than strategic leadership. Two of the three interviewed services clients are satisfied overall, highlighting Workday’s strong customer focus and software expertise.

overall services satisfaction vs strategic management skills
implementation snapshot erp software vendors only

Two note that despite willingness to help, Workday lacks some competence related to training, change management, project management, and system integration. KLAS has not validated any third-party implementations of Premier’s ERP software (which is considered mostly by smaller organizations) and is not aware of any third-party implementation partners or alliances. All three interviewed clients are highly satisfied with Premier’s implementation services. KLAS has validated very few Oracle-led implementations of Oracle’s new cloud ERP solution. A previous 2019 KLAS study on the software performance of ERP cloud solutions validated that new Oracle cloud customers often report implementation challenges.

Implementation Services

Option #2: ERP Business Transformation & Implementation Leadership Firms

Engaged as overall implementation leader for some of the most complex ERP projects. Validated engagements demonstrate three key competencies: business transformation, application implementation management, and technical expertise. Services often span the implementation life cycle, including implementation planning, change management/project management, system build/integration, and end-user training. Expected to have consultants with both depth and breadth of experience.

PwC’s Strategic Expertise Results in High Value

strategic ability and moneys worthClients view PwC as having strong ERP implementation experience and being capable of managing an ERP implementation as part of a broader business transformation. Overall, satisfied clients report that the firm met but did not exceed their expectations, with those who implemented Oracle or Workday reporting higher satisfaction than those who implemented Infor. PwC’s project leadership skills are viewed as a strength. For some clients, consultant turnover led to a poorer experience overall and to perceptions that some consultants lacked technical expertise. However, most interviewed clients say the resources they received from PwC were high quality and that PwC provided a lot of value for the cost.

For Workday and Oracle, KPMG Most Often Exceeds Expectations; Deloitte’s ERP Clients Score Them
Lowest for Execution

engagement execution vs quality of consultantsMultiple satisfied clients describe KPMG as a partner who learned the needs of their organization, communicated well, and made good recommendations. Clients particularly highlight KPMG’s at-the-elbow go-live support and appreciate the firm’s change-management skills. A few clients note issues with consultant turnover and gaps in system expertise. Clients with lower overall satisfaction feel KPMG’s expertise was more technical than strategic, and some say the firm missed timelines or did not proactively suggest best practices.

Interviewed Deloitte clients account for some of the largest, most complex implementations in this report, which helps explain why fewer report exceeded expectations. Highlighted strengths include good strategic recommendations, innovative processes/strategies, and the ability to meet timelines. Regardless of the software being implemented, some clients (both satisfied and unsatisfied) report various consultant quality issues, including missed change management expectations, lack of ERP healthcare expertise, and poor execution of recommended strategies, with the latter leading to build rework later on. The most-dissatisfied clients share that some consultants didn’t work well within the organization.

implementation snapshot business transformation leadership firms only

Implementation Services

Option #3: ERP Implementation Leadership Firms

Often engaged to provide project managers and/or technical staff for projects of low to moderate complexity. Validated engagements demonstrate two key competencies: application implementation management and technical expertise.

Both firms in this category have dedicated, in-house ERP resources and have invested to expand their capabilities.

Avaap Delivers Best Outcomes for Hard-to-Implement Infor

Avaap’s ERP work has traditionally focused on implementation leadership for moderately complex Infor projects, though Avaap has more recently demonstrated the capacity to tackle projects that include business transformation. Client satisfaction is driven largely by strong outcomes (e.g., cost savings, end-user adoption, improved organizational efficiency).

ROI's Consultants Drive High Value for Infor and Oracle Clients

ROI Healthcare Solutions’ ERP work has traditionally focused on supporting lower-complexity projects. KLAS has validated two moderately complex engagements in which ROI took on overall project leadership. ROI is known for on-time project delivery and high-quality Infor experts, driving high value. Multiple Infor users say ROI rescued their struggling implementation.

avaap roi overall performance score

Implementation Services

Option #4: ERP Staffing Firms

Provide focused technical services primarily via staff augmentation. Do not take on overall project leadership. Resources are most often leveraged to help with software build/customization being led by health system, software vendor, or third-party leadership firm.

implementation snapshot staffing firms only

High-Quality Resources from Oxford Global Resources
and Healthcare IT Leaders Result in Consistently High
Client Satisfaction

A number of staff augmentation and technical services firms do consistently well at providing high-quality support resources, setting the standard for satisfaction and quality.

quality of consultants and overall satisfaction

Oxford Global Resources

Strong healthcare ERP implementation experience. Described as a partner. Provides consistent, experienced consultants to fill gaps. Viewed as expensive but worth the cost—some consultants went above and beyond by doing more work than expected.

Healthcare IT Leaders

Fast-growing, privately held company. Primarily focused on staffing for ERP, CRM, EHR, and RCM engagements. Seen as resourceful and reliable in bringing the right supportive resources, including project managers, at competitive rates.

Atos (Limited Data)

ERP expertise gained through acquisition. Seen as collaborative and as flexible with scope changes. Feedback on quality and fit of Atos consultants is mixed; reported challenges include resources who lacked competency across modules or were a poor fit. Viewed by some as expensive.

author - Elizabeth Pew
Elizabeth Pew
author - Madison Moniz
Madison Moniz
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This material is copyrighted. Any organization gaining unauthorized access to this report will be liable to compensate KLAS for the full retail price. Please see the KLAS DATA USE POLICY for information regarding use of this report. © 2024 KLAS Research, LLC. All Rights Reserved. NOTE: Performance scores may change significantly when including newly interviewed provider organizations, especially when added to a smaller sample size like in emerging markets with a small number of live clients. The findings presented are not meant to be conclusive data for an entire client base.