Let’s address the elephant in the room, finally! The ERP implementation. It’s the holy grail of the complete ERP success cycle, which defines the success of your product, company, partners and eventually revenue. 

Given that ERPs are high touch solutions and require a fair amount of configuration / customization, the role of team driving ERP implementation becomes highly critical.

In this section, we will talk about some of the best practices which Frappe Partners can follow to drive an implementation, and get a success story out of it.

Problem vs Requirements

If you ask a customer, “what do you want from an ERP solution?”. You can expect customers listing list modules as if they were kids in the shop, pointing at each candy one by one. Of-course they want all of it. Hence, it’s important to restrict the scope around the burning issues at hand, and try to address them using as many vanilla features of ERPNext as possible. It will be a task to get it from the customer. It cannot be, “we want to go live with Sales, Purchase, Inventory and manufacturing”. It should be around the business problems, like:

  • No live tracking of the inventory

  • Over ordering of the raw-material items

  • Slower pace of  Quotation and Sales Order approvals

  • Preventing item’s valuation issues

  • Delayed delivery of customer orders

Even to solve these issues, you will end-up implementing a few modules, however it will be focused around solving specific business problems of the customer, and not implementing that module itself.

Hence, don't panic if you are bombarded with a lot of customisation requests from the customers. Request prioritisation plays a big role in handling requirements. After going through the list of requests, you are required to determine whether all the requirements are urgent for the business to run seamlessly. You can also propose an alternate approach to the customers for getting the same things achieved through vanilla features of ERPNext. 

Consider only those customisation requests which are really crucial for the business to run smoothly. Feel free to discard any insignificant features that are not going to add any value. You can prioritise all customisation requests based on their urgency and impact on the business.

Agile and Faster Go-live

The agile method of ERPNext implementation allows you to split the entire project scope into different phases and prioritise their delivery based on the pain points addressed by them. As a result, the agile method often turns out to be more productive and reduces the chance of failure.

It’s important to provide a solution while you have the attention of project’s sponsors and users. It's already 3-4 months, and their customers haven’t gone live with anything, it’s obvious that they will start to lose patience. It’s just natural. However, instead of one big-bang implementation, if you would have taken customer likes on at least the sales, purchase and inventory module within 1-2 months, they would start seeing the outcome of their investment much earlier. Infact, It’s very much possible that their business priority will shift and they will demand fewer customization items compared to the implementation phase.

Caution: You can follow agile implementation methodology, even if you have followed a fix-bid approach for quoting a customer. The fix-bid approach shouldn’t force you to follow the Waterfall implementation method.

Project Tracking

No project will attain desired success without meticulous planning and execution. Before you begin any project activities, make sure that you determine the scope of work and estimate efforts. You may also have to split the scope into smaller tasks for better tracking and management.

 This repetitive task can be made a bit more efficient for your team by creating reusable templates based on project types. The overall scope of each project type can be split into different tasks and all the relevant tasks can be clubbed together under a project template. This will help you create new projects more efficiently.

Here are some actionables we would expect each Frappe Partner to follow on this project management.



Project Templates

Depending on the need of the project type, project templates comprising relevant tasks are grouped together for reusability purpose

Project Tasks

The overall scope of the project is split into smaller tasks for better tracking and management.

Ensure each task has the owner specified, and an estimated completion date is set.

Project Champion

Identify the project champion from the customer’s end, a one point of contact who would own people and change management at the customer’s end. This is highly critical for the overall success of the project, as being a service provider, we cannot resolve the people and change management issues at the customer’s end.

Customer Tasks

Customers have a fair amount of tasks to be owned in the life cycle. Ensure to create tasks for the customers, like:

1. Masters sharing in the specific format

2. Briefing on the company’s core processes
3. Provider using and role matrix
4. Testing and validating system

This will also mean that you should share the project (at least the tasks for next two weeks) with the customers as well. This is also called “Agile Sprints” where instead of planning for big-bang live, you break go-lives in multiple phases.

Frappe Site

Create Frappe / ERPNext sites. If implementation also involves customization and custom apps, then we recommend creating separate sites for production and staging purposes.

Custom Development Tracker

Even After you shortlist the customisation and integration requests depending on their impact on business continuity, ensure that those developments are estimated and tracked actively. This will help you prioritise and deliver them within the committed timeline.

Weekly Review

Ensure you have a mechanism for a weekly review with the customers and internally as well.

Project Analysis

  • No. of total active projects

  • No. of Projects running behind the scheduled (expected Project per consultant

  • Pending tasks (esp. One behind planned date)

Escalation Matrix

Implementation is a tricky business, where we see the expectations of the customer’s changing on-the-fly. At times, it’s further complicated by a Project / Account’s manager’s switches from the partner’s end. The delays in go-live are pretty frequent. And “n” no. of other scenarios which lead to a situation where you as a Service Provider or a customer needs to make an escalation. We better be prepared for it.

You can create a hierarchy comprising 3-4 layers for addressing customer concerns of different intensities. Having a structured escalation matrix will strengthen customer trust as they will ensure that the higher management is keen on addressing and resolving their concerns. 

Account Manager (partner)

Person A

Project Manager (partner)

Person B

Customer Success Manager (Frappe)

Person C

CXO (Frappe)

Person D

Similarly, you must demand an escalation matrix from the customer as well, so that you know whom to call out, in case delays from happening from the customer’s end.

Module owners

Person A, B, and C

Project Champion

Person D

Projects sponsor

Person E


Person F

You can stick to three or four levels of escalation matrix, based on the situation. Do always ensure to make an internal escalation before an external escalation, so that everyone in the loop can expect what is going to happen on the project next, and prepare yourself to handle it positively.

Project Documentation

When you are discussing requirements with the customer, there is more focus on the explanation of the specific scenario by the speaker. The way it would be understood by one person can be completely different than the other. Hence, never take-up a customization or change request based on verbal explanation. You should always demand it in writing.

There are various advantages to writing it. It becomes a permanent record, on which you can demand a sign-off from the customer. Here are some of the actionalable we suggest to manage the project's scope and requirements.



Signed NDA

This will ensure and both trust and legal binding is enforced to request highest confidentiality to customer’s data

Customer Requirements

The requirement and process is defined in a linear and clearer way, compared to verbal explanation.

You as a service provider can review it internally multiple times, and document solutions on those lines.

Solution Documentation

Partner should also document their solution and get sign-off in writing from the customer

Project Folders

Ensure that a folder is maintained for each Project and all the data received and shared with the customer is maintained in a common place. You can also have a task to delete the customer’s data after the project is over.

Note: While documentation is utmost important, do ensure it doesn’t become a bureaucratic process even for the changes which can be implemented quickly, thanks to framework tools offered by Frappe. Some of these changes can be small requests like adding a custom field, permission change or workflow customization. You can still log a timesheet for this, with brief changes done.

If a customer is smart enough to start with small and extend it to larger customization, do halt and request for customization. Be smart when you need to stop. If there is a recipe to it, do share with us

Customer Visits

When doing remote implementation, you can easily walk-through users on how to create (say) a Job Card. But do we even know the chaos which exists at the shop floor? Is there a device applicable? Is the end user educated and trained enough to create a job card? 

You would know this only if you see the ground reality yourself. In fact, it’s possible that you will not even suggest creation of Job Cards to the customer, but suggest one alternative. This one move could become a key factor in the overall success of the project. Just like this example, you can come across many ground level realities at the customer’s site and frame your solution accordingly.

Visiting your customer in the initial phase of the project will also help you gain customer trust in order to build a solid rapport. Meeting your customer onsite will help you empathise more. This will give you an opportunity to meet the end users, understand their requirements and pain points, and learn expectations from the ERPNext implementation.

Crucial Implementation Steps

It’s highly recommended that you use Project Template to log the most important steps of implementation. You can also create multiple templates based on the several types. Click here to find a project template shared by Frappe in the Partner Relationship Module.



Project Creation With Details

Project is created with the following details:

  • Project Start Date

  • Estimated End Date

  • Tasks, with dates

  • Project champion and Account manager

  • Escalation matrix

  • Documentation folder

Project Kick-Off

Ensure all the stack-holders from the customer’s attend kick-off. Do listen to them well. Calmly educate customers on agile and vanilla go-live, which addresses their needs more efficiently. Be aligned to customer’s problem solving and not implementation.

Project Plan

In order to deliver a project successfully, you need to identify key deliverables based on your requirements gathering session and a kick off meeting with the customer. Feel free to use an appropriate template consisting of relevant tasks and derive a project plan with respect to a tentative timeline.

Check the list of configuration settings for each module feature, though we don’t recommend tracking projects in the spreadsheet. Do use the ERPNext Project module for tracking ongoing projects.

Master Data

Just like fish is to what, the healthy master data is for the overall implementation of the project’s success.

If we put garbage master data in the ERP, no matter how good the software is, the output / reports / dashboards will also be garbage.

Process Mapping

This is a crucial step in which you will be determining what percentage of customer requirements are getting covered through out of the box features and how much customisation will be needed.

For each module, you can categorise the requirements in 3 baskets: Covered As Is, Minor Tweaks and Code Changes/Code Development

Ensure that you are keeping your findings from the process mapping activity documented for future reference.

Training Sign Off

Training your customers on all modules will be crucial to attain success in any project. Once the concerned people at customer’s end are trained on relevant modules, get a written confirmation from the customer to avoid any conflict in the future.

UAT Sign Off

Once all the requirements are handled on the staging site, get confirmation from the customer that the system is working as expected and no piece of the requirements is pending. You can share a pre-designed UAT template and get it signed by the customer.

Here is the sample format for UAT sign-off.

Go Live Plan

  • Depute someone onsite

  • Be ready for few last mile glitches, and plan for contingency accordingly 

  • Post go live support, stay on alert for a month or two

  • Pull the plug on the old system. Managers should demand authorization in new system

Switch Off Legacy System

The success of your project depends on the customer's adaptability to ERPNext . If you want to ensure the end-users don't keep comparing your solution with the legacy solution, and have a fall-back option, ensure to convince management to pull the plug on the legacy system.

Also, in the interest of enforcing change, management shall demand the transactions being created in the ERPNext, and then only they should be authorised.

Go Live Sign Off

Once the project goes live, you can expect frequent queries from the customer. However, you can expect to get the project stabilised  in a month or so.

Once you feel that the project is stabilised, request a go live sign off from the customer as a confirmation that the project is officially live and stable. You can share a pre-designed UAT template and get it signed by the customer.

Here is the sample format for the go-live.

Post Implementation Feedback

Every project will be a new learning experience for your team and you would like to understand what went right and what could have been better from the customer's perspective.

So, once the go live sign off has been received from the customer, make sure that you are capturing  their feedback against a few parameters such as:

  • Overall Implementation

  • Clarity

  • Communication

  • Completeness

  • Timeliness

Sign Off and Withdrawal

If you have reached till here, I congratulate you for your skills like deliberate planning, patience listening to customers, people management, ERPNext expertise (ofcourse) and converting opportunities into success stories.

While you are celebrating a customer's go-live, your sales team is ready with a new customer’s contract, trusting on your skills to capitalise on opportunities. If you want to latch onto the new project, it’s important you hand-over the live projects in the safe hands of the support team.

Since each project is unique and has some custom components, it’s important that you handover the proper download to your support team. It’s ideal if you can also create a doctype which records the hand-over details and acceptance from the customer. This process will ensure your support team / account manager is equipped with the knowledge they need to answer all sorts of support questions coming from the customer.

Here is the sample of Project Handover form filled by the Account Manager, while handing over the project to support.