Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software is designed to assist your company in managing and understanding the most important components of its business. Whether for sales and marketing or finance and inventory, ERP technology can provide real-time visibility into your business operations and allow for superior insights and access to types of information previously unavailable.
Unfortunately, preceding every running ERP system is an always complex and sometimes treacherous software installation. And, as scores of unsuspecting companies have discovered the hard way, very few ERP installations go as planned and many are nothing short of a nightmare. Troubled ERP installations not only severely disrupt your business with a never-ending cascade of roadblocks and frustrations, but they can also represent an existential threat to your company.
Having Beeman & Muchmore involved from the outset of your installation can level the playing field and correct the imbalance of power between you and your vendor. We have a nationally renowned ERP installation practice designed to protect your interests at every stage of the process. Whether it’s drafting and negotiating elaborate service agreements, guiding the installation itself, or, when necessary, holding vendors accountable to their contractual obligations, Beeman & Muchmore protects your interests through one of the most—if not the most—important transactions your company will undertake.
ERP installation contracts are typically lopsided agreements tactically drafted by vendors to shift the vast bulk of the responsibility and liability to the licensee. Whether it is disclaimers of warranties and representations, untenable limitations of liability, or an unacceptable shift of responsibility for key deliverables, many licensees fail to discover contractual landmines until the installation is well underway. Conversely, many licensees are surprised to find those vendor representations that were understood to be contractual were, in fact, nothing more than unenforceable statements by overly eager sales staff that failed to find their way into the agreement.
ERP software systems are incredibly complex and intricate, and integrating them with existing systems is a huge undertaking under the best of circumstances. Unfortunately, often from the very beginning of an installation project, software vendors take a defensive posture and begin making a record, piece by piece, that leverages the contractual imbalance to shift the responsibility—and therefore the liability—to the unwary licensee.
The third-party ERP services industry is a choked mélange of vendor partners – both explicitly and implicitly aligned with key providers – while truly independent professionals struggle to distinguish themselves in the market. After an agreement is in place is the wrong time to discover that your supposedly neutral integrator has a long-standing partnership with your vendor that will prevent it from prioritizing the interests of your company.
ERP projects have only a 7 percent chance of coming in on time, will almost certainly cost more than estimated, and will very likely produce unsatisfying results. According to the publication The Critical Success Factors for ERP Implementation: An Organizational Fit Perspective, 75 percent of ERP implementations are considered failures by the customer.
There is no greater money pit or emotional maelstrom for your company than litigating an ERP installation failure. One need look no further than the debacles suffered by the State of Oregon or the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power to get an alarming insight into the ruined careers, sunk millions, and lost productivity that goes hand in hand with litigating the Kafkaesque aftermath of a failed implementation.
With little exception, standard installation agreements should not be considered acceptable for your company. Based on our years of experience at all stages of the installation process, Beeman & Muchmore can identify landmines and work with you to ensure your agreement—the blueprint for your entire installation—protects your company.
All too often, licensees that are consumed with the day-to-day and month-to-month of a longtail installation are dismayed to discover that their vendor has been subtly seeding communications with blame-shifting tactics and otherwise making a devastating record. Beeman & Muchmore casts an experienced and expert eye over the installation process to assure that problems that may develop are addressed appropriately by the vendor and, in the case of a failing installation, the record is free from harmful admissions that will make it difficult, if not impossible, for your company to get the benefit of its bargain.
Beeman & Muchmore will take the time to ensure that your team has all the right players and that each member is solely dedicated to the single goal of perfecting your company’s installation.
Most litigation spawned by troubled ERP installations is entirely avoidable. In our experience, it is the indefatigable frustration of witnessing the derailing of an undertaking of immense importance to your company that inspires quixotic litigation that, at best, will result in a painful and Pyrrhic victory. We are committed to our notion that nearly all – if not all – ERP installation disputes can and should be resolved through constructive negotiation helmed by counsel with extensive experience in the industry.
We designed Beeman & Muchmore to take advantage of the efficiencies of the new economy. With no steep learning curves and no expensive Bay Area real estate to maintain, our clients pay for the services they receive, not an infrastructure they don’t need.
Accordingly, not only are we able to offer rates that are half of our BigLaw rates, we have the flexibility to enter into a wide variety of alternative fee arrangements.
Hourly billings capped at an agreed-upon maximum for a given case, project, or service.
Set pricing provided on a variety of different services.
Unlimited services are made available for a fixed monthly or yearly price.
Purchase a block of prepaid attorney hours at a substantial discount.
Graduated volume discounts are provided to incentivize clients to feel comfortable relying upon our services as much as necessary.
Predetermined payment guaranteed to our firm with the balance contingent on our success in achieving the desired outcome for you.
Hourly billing arrangement that rewards efficiency, with a bonus provided to our firm if the work is completed under budget and a discount to you if the work goes over budget.