Aaltodoc publication archive (Aalto University institutional repository)
School of Business | Department of Business Technology | Information Systems Science | 2010
Thesis number: 12471
ERP implementation process and its critical success factors
|Title:||ERP implementation process and its critical success factors|
|Year:||2010 Language: eng|
|Department:||Department of Business Technology|
|Academic subject:||Information Systems Science|
|Index terms:||tietojärjestelmät; information systems; prosessit; processes; ohjausjärjestelmät; control systems; laadullinen tutkimus; qualitative research|
|Key terms:||ERP; implementation; critical success factors; qualitative research; process evaluation|
Purpose of the study
The purpose of this study is to create a synthesis of existing ERP implementation models and give a comprehensive introduction to different phases of an ERP implementation process. The synthesis is supposed to work as a practical tool for preparing, carrying out and evaluating an ERP implementation project for organizations. This thesis also familiarizes the reader with the most common critical success factors. After presenting the framework, the synthesis is tested in practice by evaluating the implementation process of a case company and assessing how successfully the case company has utilized the system after going live.
The synthesis is created by combining information from various implementation frameworks. The analysis on the performance of the case company is based on the synthesis. The criteria for selecting the critical success factors were the frequency of appearance in academic literature and their relevance to ERP projects. The study was carried out as a qualitative research. Semi-structured interviews were used to gather the required data for analysis. Altogether seven interviews were conducted for the research. The data was gathered until saturation was reached. The interviewees came from different organizational levels to avoid biased results. An interview guide was used to address the topics of most interest during the interviews. The analysis of empirical study is based on the created synthesis.
The implementation synthesis consists of three main phases: pre-implementation, implementation and post-implementation phase. These phases are divided into more detailed stages that are necessary to address during an implementation process. The synthesis emphasizes the iterative nature of different stages especially during the pre-implementation phase. The critical success factors are categorized into strategic and tactical success factors. The study implies that the importance of critical success factors has been overemphasized in academic debate. Failing in one or more CSFs does not necessarily have as drastic impact as suggested. The empirical research also revealed that ERP implementation in the case company as a process was an overall success. Although the implementation process was carried out properly, the case company should put more effort on IT governance. The IT infrastructure is very fragmented, which has had a negative impact on benefit realization.
Master's theses are stored at Learning Centre in Otaniemi.