How to Screw Up Your JD Edwards Project (Part 2)

Posted by Bill Onion

February 20, 2017 | 10:30 AM

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how to screw up JDE.pngA recent JD Edwards project we worked on had all of the classic indicators of a project that was not on the right track. While these red flags were immediately obvious to our team, the client wasn’t initially aware of how these issues would impact the project’s success. To help your team learn from these mistakes, take a look at the following ways you could be screwing up your JD Edwards project without even realizing it. (Check out Part One here). 

No Transparency

For this particular project, the client wanted to keep the project under wraps. It was on a need-to-know basis, and very few people needed to know. The challenge here was that when input was needed from an out-of-the-loop business process owner, our consulting team was not permitted to tell the business process owner why that information was needed. Therefore, it was much more difficult to get the applicable information.

Part of the reason they were hesitant to share information about the project was a concern of backlash from the team. Change can be scary, and the client was worried about how their team would react. However, if you’re concerned about your team’s reaction before a project has started, imagine how poorly it might be received after the change has already happened.

On any major project, communication is key. Everyone needs to know what they are working towards, or project momentum will stall. And, if the team’s reaction is cause for concern, perhaps the issue at hand is not the project, but the people. Any improvement to your organization should be met with enthusiasm, so if your team is not on board, they might be part of the problem.

No Champion

One issue that we see time and again, and that was a problem during this project, was that the client did not have a project champion. Without someone to act as an internal sales person, the project didn’t receive the buy-in it needed.

If we’ve said it once, we’ve said it a thousand times: every project needs a champion. In order to be successful, your JDE project will need someone to lead the way. This person will pull the project through to completion and cut through disruptions to make sure the job gets done. Just like with timeline, day-to-day tasks will distract from the project at hand. But for the project champion, the project is their day-to-day task. They will keep it moving forward and manage the rest of the client team.

Only Outsourced or Part-Time Developers

Our client’s IT team was made up of subcontractors and, while they were skilled in the technology, they didn’t have the same loyalty to the company that they would have had if they were full-time employees. With a disjointed team like this, some people have more business process information than others, which makes progress tough. Additionally, one of their subcontractors took on another project full-time, so they were only available on nights and weekends. Without consistent access to that knowledge, the project slowed down.

Rather than outsourcing all IT resources, we recommend having a small staff of dedicated IT personnel to handle your core business. From there, you can outsource when needed while still having access to an internal team that is dedicated not only to the project, but the company as well. This, like many of the other tips above, keeps business knowledge accessible and will help the project move forward.

So, there you have it: a few ways to make sure that your JDE project gets off on the right foot. While none of these tips guarantee success, they will help you get out of your own way and start your project strong.

Do you have a JD Edwards project that could use some guidance? Contact our experienced team.

Click to Download Our JD Edwards Methodology

Topics: JD Edwards, ERP

About Bill Onion

Bill Onion is Managing Director of Briteskies, where he has a distinguished track record helping B2B and B2C companies integrate e-commerce solutions. His expertise in the eCommerce world includes Magento and WebSphere Commerce software systems and his enterprise software experience is focused on the Oracle/JD Edwards platform. Bill has many years of consulting experience in various industries, including distribution, warehousing, retail and manufacturing. Bill is an avid runner, is very involved with Scouts, and cannot help but to root for the Browns every fall.

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