The ultimate success of an ERP initiative depends not only on the system you choose, but also on how knowledgeable and skilled the members of the implementation team are. If your employees have no ERP expertise, trying to implement an ERP software solution relying just on your in-house staff is a huge mistake. In this case, you should look for a reliable and experienced ERP implementation consultant. Now the question is, how can you find the right person for the job?   

Dozens of ERP consulting companies out there are trying to attract customers with sugar-coated messages, which say the same thing: we’re ready to impress you with exceptional services. But the truth is that most customers have no idea what they’re paying for until it’s too late.

As a Microsoft Dynamics AX partner operating in Texas, we’ve compiled a list of the most important points to look out for when choosing a Dynamics AX consultant in Dallas.

Your Organization’s Needs
Most consultants will guide you toward an ERP system considering the latest technologies instead of your company’s needs. For example, even though many professionals agree that Dynamics AX is one of the best ERP systems for SMEs, most of them recommend other solutions for their own sake.

But a reputable consultant will never do this. He'll suggest software products that best fit with your company both now and in the future. Another important point: the consultant should be empathetic to really understand your company’s needs and help you find the best ERP solution.  

Industry-Specific Experience
The vast majority of Dynamics AX consultants have technical knowledge, but not all of them have sector-specific expertise. If the Dynamics AX consultant you intend to hire doesn’t understand your sector, he’ll be unable to offer you advice regarding the right solution for your company or to customize an ERP system to meet very particular needs and demands.

Cultural Fit
The term “cultural fit” refers to whether or not the consultant will get along with the employees forming your internal ERP implementation team. Since ERP implementations may involve serious issues, a professional should be able to work under pressure and manage stressful situations without creating a negative work environment.  

Methodology and Tools
The methodology and tools a consultant uses are key elements for ensuring the best possible outcomes. Since a robust, innovative methodology along with the right tools can help expedite the entire ERP implementation process and minimize costly errors, the consultant should present the entire methodology along with the tools he’ll use during each implementation phase. While you can’t expect him to reveal all of his secrets -- after all, we we’re talking about proprietary information -- he should explain certain aspects well enough for you to understand what he’ll do and what you’ll get.

Finding a reputable, knowledgeable and caring Dynamics AX consultant is quite useless if he’s unable to communicate openly, honestly and effectively with you. Transparent communication is essential not only to ensure that the project will run smoothly, but also to build trust, which is key to partnership success.

You need to be able to rely completely on your consultant as your project moves through various phases. For this, your consultant must communicate changes regularly, provide guidance when necessary, listen to you, answer questions and find timely solutions to problems so that the project can continue as soon as possible, allowing you to avoid delays and additional costs.

When searching for the best consultant, you should look for a reputable service provider ready to become your partner. As your partner, the consultant will focus on delivering the best possible service, explaining exactly what he can and can't do. Also, your new partner won’t mind answering questions outside of working hours and helping you out even during the holidays and weekends.

A very essential aspect to keep in mind is that you need a Dynamics AX consultant who is both able to solve implementation issues as they arise and ready to teach your employees specific operational techniques. Having an expert willing to transfer practical knowledge to your staff is one of the most important factors affecting the success of your ERP solution over the long term.

Author Bio. Sarah Mcgraw is a technology blogger and loves to keep an eye on latest technology updates.