A (New) Look at User Participation in an ERP
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Martin Gibbs: Human Resources, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN, USA
International Journal of Knowledge-Based Organizations (IJKBO), 2014, vol. 4, issue 3, 1-7
Engaging users in an enterprise resource planning (ERP) implementation is not new. Research espouses the benefits of user participation in such major projects, and often takes it for granted that users are involved. What is missing is an assessment of how best to engage users, when to involve them, and how much decision-making and influence they are allowed. This paper highlights findings from a single case study, and encourages future research to develop a newer understanding of user participation. Key components of successful user engagement include an integrated team approach, a balance of workload, the need for expertise at all levels, organizational and project commitment, effective decision-making, the reduction of competing resources or projects, and the maintenance of user participation post-implementation. As ERP systems mature and companies upgrade and maintain their systems, the concept of user participation should remain a core component of ERP research and practice.
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