Dan Puett

Manager - Sales Support

ERP Challenges in Local Government


Many state, county, and city governments currently recognize the need for more dependable, efficient, and accurate information systems.  Today’s complex governance requirements demand efficiency, accuracy, and transparency for tracking and reporting information. Common challenges and constraints experienced by public sector entities are:

  • Outdated hardware and software that is difficult and costly to maintain
  • Diverse agencies or departments that do not or cannot share common processes and information
  • Multiple software systems that don’t “speak” to each other and are difficult to maintain
  • Long-held internal business processes that are not efficient or comprehensive enough to support the demands of today’s increased populations and services needs
  • Data security setup and maintenance that, with today’s complex hierarchies, is cumbersome and suspect

Public sector enterprises are turning to Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems to provide support of business processes and tracking outcomes. ERP implementation has become a necessity to compensate for reduced funding and the resulting need for more efficient government.

Public sector environments face unique and complex challenges in the successful implementation of integrated systems.  The public sector structure, mission diversity, multiple levels of accountability and the independent, tactical delivery of many services create these challenges.  There are few organizations in the private sector that experience a similar complexity, diverse service provision, revenue generation, auditing, and reporting inherent in government.  Implementing an ERP system with a public sector client requires understanding, experience, and knowledge of the challenges unique to governments.

A successful ERP implementation for public sector organizations begins with the recognition of the complexity of those environments.  When the challenges are recognized early on, the strategies for elimination, avoidance, and mitigation of risk can be included in the initial project planning. The challenges will not automatically resolve themselves during or after the ERP implementation.  They will only serve to complicate, delay, or derail a successful implementation if plans are not made to accommodate the singular public sector characteristics.

CIBER’s Lawson Practice understands the value of Lawson technology to our clients. Perhaps more importantly, we bring the benefit of our expertise and skills to lead:

  • Organizational change management initiatives
  • Business process recalibration
  • Comprehensive training programs
  • Full capability transfer techniques

Future writings will detail some of these tools and techniques our practice brings to our clients. Additional information about the CIBER Lawson practice may be found at http://www.ciber.com/erp/lawson

One Response to “ERP Challenges in Local Government”

  1. david jones says:

    good work. well written.

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