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What’s a CIP, and How Will it Help Your Business?

By Thomas Falteich

WhatsACIPandHowWillItHelpYourBusinessWhy Does Your Software Need a CIP?  

Manufacturers and distributors implement ERP, CRM, eCommerce, and other software solutions to improve business processes, eliminate errors, and increase profits. However, enterprise software implementations are a significant investment–it takes time, money, and internal resources. Plenty of effort goes into the implementation, but enterprise software does not exist in a vacuum.

Software solutions are meant to grow and change with your business and accommodate new software features as the system is updated, by the vendor, over time. To maximize your investment, we recommend being open to making changes to the software throughout its operational lifecycle. One way to plan for future changes and maximize your enterprise software is through a CIP or continuous improvement plan.

A CIP is a tactic designed to ensure your business is leveraging your software implementation to decrease costs and increase revenue well after your go-live date. Here at Datix, we provide CIPs to cover ongoing services and offer critical enhancements. Some of the services included in a CIP include:

  • Systems audit
  • Asset management
  • License management
  • Network & server monitoring
  • Remote administration & support
  • Proactively scheduled follow-ups
  • Datix continuous protection

Keep reading to learn how a CIP will better your software, and therefore better your business! 

Maintain Your Budget

Enterprise software is costly; that’s not a secret. Maintaining your budget during your implementation or after your go-live date can be difficult. Cost overruns are a common problem for manufacturers’ and distributors’ software projects.

A CIP can prevent these expensive and scary cost overruns. By developing a long-term schedule of upgrades and tasks, businesses will provide a solid structure for budgeting. That way, you will always know when a certain project is taking too much time or money. Additionally, businesses can use their CIP to channel investments to the right places and target areas of waste.

This means you will not only stay on budget but will also increase the value of your investment for long after you go live.

Keep Your Software Up to Date

Enterprise software is constantly changing. For example, Infor, Epicor®, and other ERP vendors frequently roll out upgrades that can change best practices. A CIP will prepare your business to adapt to these changes by determining how your business will upgrade your software (phase-in by department or simultaneous) with new training and possible workflow changes.

This will allow you to feel confident that your team will be ready for changes rather than scrambling to get everything in order.

Finalize Post-Live Operations

It’s not uncommon for customizations and adjustments to be made after enterprise software is live. This is due to the many (possible) unexpected roadblocks that accompany software implementation. With disruptions and unknowns, it just makes sense to push some tasks off to after you’re live.

By incorporating a CIP, you can ensure your post-live tasks are all completed, and you can map out the most time and cost-effective timeline for these post-live operations. Otherwise, you may find customizations and other important tasks are forgotten or neglected and aren’t there when your employees need them. Your CIP can ensure your business achieves everything you set out to with your software.

Ensure Longevity

Enterprise software isn’t meant to work out of the box. For this reason, we recommend fitting it to your business processes and data. Datix conducts business process modeling to adequately fit your software to your business process. That being said, this doesn’t mean you should just model your software to your business process for your implementation. Your business will look different three years from now; growth, technological advances, and other changes will affect the ways that your enterprise operates, communicates, and services your customers.

A CIP will help your software keep up with business growth and changes. By avoiding processes that don’t support your business, you will optimize efficiency and eliminate weak software and lost profits.

Wrap Up

At Datix, our consultants will take the time to learn your business process and develop a flexible software CIP that will help your business benefit from your software for years to come. We are enterprise software experts and offer a myriad of solutions–ERP, CRM, and eCommerce to name a few.

We will leverage our experience and expertise to develop a robust CIP that will work for your business. To learn more, contact us today!

Tags: CRM, Enterprise Software, ERP, Solutions and Services, Business Leaders Maximizing Technology, distribution, manufacturing, ecommerce, ROI, cip

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