How long will an ERP project take?
Companies that install ERP do not have an easy time of it. Don't be fooled when ERP vendors tell you about a three- or six-month
average implementation time. Those short (that's right, six
months is short) implementations all have a catch of one kind
or another: The company was small, or the implementation was
limited to a small area of the company, or the company used
only the financial pieces of the ERP system (in which case the
ERP system is nothing more than a very expensive accounting
system). To do ERP right, the ways you do business will need
to change and the ways people do their jobs will need to change
too. And that kind of change doesn't come without pain. Unless,
of course, your ways of doing business are working extremely
well (orders all shipped on time, productivity higher than all
your competitors, customers completely satisfied), in which
case there is no reason to even consider ERP.
The important thing is not to focus on how long it will take real transformational ERP efforts usually run between one and three years,
on average but rather to understand why you need it and how you will use it to improve your business.