The crucial role of the Project Manager in ERP deployments



Back to blog

Adopting an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system is often a wise choice to improve business efficiency and profitability. However, deploying an ERP, especially SAP, can be a complex process that can lead to frustration and even potential conflict. This is where the role of the Project Manager becomes key!


In this article, we will discuss the importance of the Project Manager's role in ERP deployment projects, with a focus on the local SAP deployment. We will also discuss the challenges of managing cultural differences and potential conflicts, as well as the importance of change management to ensure successful adoption of the ERP solution.


The Project Manager is responsible for the planning, coordination and execution of the project. In the case of an ERP deployment, he/she must develop a detailed project plan, which takes into account time, resources, risks and costs involving the various stakeholders, namely team members, suppliers and customers.

The Project Manager must also ensure that the SAP solution is implemented according to industry best practices and quality standards, on time and on budget. He/she must perform rigorous testing to ensure that the solution is stable, reliable and meets the business needs.

Another important task of the Project Manager is to manage the risks associated with the project. ERP deployment projects can be complex and often involve many risks, including technical risks, regulatory compliance risks, financial risks, schedule risks, etc. The Project Manager must be able to identify potential risks and put in place mitigation measures to minimize their impact on the project.

He/she is also responsible for communicating with all stakeholders, including local teams, to ensure that the project objectives are clearly understood. He must also ensure that he has a sufficient number of committed teams working on the project.

Franck, an experienced project manager, has been a freelancer and a member of the community for 1 1/2 years. Here he talks about his collaboration with FocusTribes for a client in the industry sector, and discusses the challenges of the Project Manager role in the specific case of his client.





Are you looking for a Project Manager like Franck to lead your ERP deployment projects?


Book a meeting



Hello ! My name is Franck Liquito.
I have more than 20 years of experience in the deployment of implementation projects, either with software from the market or with local solutions developed by companies. I have been working for 13 years in project management and project leadership.



I started working with FocusTribes a year ago on the deployment part for our client. The client wanted to deploy SAP in all the entities so that they could manage the costs and budgets part and to be sure that the entities had the same vision from a central point of view as from a local point of view. The difficulty for the entities is that they always have the impression that it is the central office that imposes the rules. So the first part, which is important in the project manager's mission, is to really explain the usefulness of this project from a global, SAP point of view. It's more a question of a tool and methodology, than of a need for the central office to impose their budgetary rules.


Moreover, change management is key in the deployment of a tool because it allows both the business and the entities to understand the interest of the new tool and to set up their processes on this tool. And that's really how they integrate the deployment even more easily. They see how they're going to do things on a daily basis, with a defined process.



What I liked about FocusTribes was the mix of excellence and skills. The excellence part, because I was surprised by the integration process where I had to pass three interviews; I felt a bit like an intern, so much so that I found it very standardized and that the need was really to take experts. Thanks to these interviews, FocusTribes has confidence and also understands the consultant's needs and skills. This makes it possible to have good assignments or, in any case, assignments that are in line with the consultant's objective of demonstrating his or her competence, and also with FocusTribes' objective of saying what the interest is in positioning this consultant rather than another one.



The project manager is responsible for managing the harmonization and standardization objectives of the core solution, the "Core Model", while respecting the local specificities of the companies.
One of the main challenges of deploying an ERP system on a global scale is managing cultural differences and local business specificities. Local specifics can include differences in regulations, laws, business practices and processes.
To manage these differences, the Project Manager must work closely with local teams. He/she must understand their issues and challenges and develop a deployment strategy that takes into account local needs and requirements, while ensuring that the global Core Model is respected and meets the global requirements of the company.



Change management is a major step in any ERP deployment project. It consists of supporting the teams in their adaptation to the new processes and tools, in order to guarantee optimal adoption of the solution. The project manager has a central role in this stage, as he or she must manage communication with the various players involved in the project.
Communication is essential to explain the reasons for the change and the expected benefits, but also to answer users' questions. The project manager must therefore ensure that all team members are informed and trained on the new solution, taking into account the specificities of each local entity.
Training is therefore a key point in change management. It must be adapted to the different profiles of the users, according to their level of competence and their role in the company. It is also important to offer regular training sessions to allow users to keep up to date with changes in the solution.
Finally, the project manager must anticipate resistance to change and implement actions to defuse it. For example, he or she can organize work groups to gather feedback and needs from users, or set up performance indicators to measure the impact of the solution on the company's activity.


In conclusion, the role of the project manager is essential in any ERP deployment project, especially in the case of group solutions such as SAP. In order to carry out his mission, the project manager must have technical skills, but also managerial, communication and leadership skills. He/she must be able to unite teams around a common objective and support them in their adaptation to change.
Finally, it is important to emphasize that the deployment of an ERP solution is a long-term strategic business project, which also requires close involvement of the management with real sponsorship. The success of the project will largely depend on the quality of this collaboration, as well as on the project manager's ability to anticipate market changes and user needs.
In short, the role of the project manager in an ERP deployment project is crucial. He or she must be able to manage the technical and human challenges, while guaranteeing user acceptance of the new solution. Thanks to his expertise and leadership, he can make the deployment of an ERP a real transformation lever for the company.


If you also need to surround yourself with quality project managers, do not hesitate to contact us via the link below:


Contact us


To go further : 

- Harmonisation and standardisation: The Tribe's expert opinion