User Acceptance Testing: The Key to ERP Implementation Success
Cloud-based ERP solutions offer many benefits, such as actionable business insights, access to corporate data in real-time, better control and transparency, and more. However, many business leaders are hesitant to implement these cloud solutions because they have a bad reputation of failing.
According to McKinsey, more than 70% of all digital transformation projects fail. One of the biggest reasons for ERP failure is the poor adoption by end-users. Simply put, if the employees aren’t engaged and using the product as intended, the ERP implementation project will not succeed.
To avoid this type of failure, enterprises need a robust and efficient User Acceptance Testing (UAT) process. UAT ensures that end user needs, those set forth in the evaluation phase, are met. UAT also provides an opportunity for business users to test and evaluate the ERP solution themselves.
In this post, we take a deeper look into the role of User Acceptance Testing in ERP projects and explain why it’s so critical for success. We’ll also answer some of the most pressing questions regarding UAT during migrations and implementations, including…
- What is UAT testing?
- Why is UAT so crucial for ERP implementation success?
- What are the main challenges users face while doing UAT?
- How does Opkey solve ERP and UAT challenges?
1. What is UAT testing?
UAT is testing performed by business or end users to verify that the software performs as expected. It’s not about surface-level design or content errors within the program itself. It’s strictly based on functionality and business process execution. During UAT, business users test daily tasks and workflows within the ERP system prior to the actual launch.
2. Why is UAT so crucial for ERP implementation success?
It stands to reason that the people who will be using the ERP system the most should be involved in testing. Although technical consultants and developers possess a great deal of knowledge about ERP solutions, they don’t use the product on a daily basis. Involving these business users in testing upfront is the fastest way to pinpoint inefficient processes.
Another reason UAT is critical to ERP success is that it promotes early adoption and usage. Lack of adoption is a major reason for ERP failure. Including business users as an integral part of the testing process increases engagement by positioning them as primary stakeholders and allowing them to fine-tune the software to their specific needs. Not only does this approach eliminate potential issues, bottlenecks and software bugs, it leads to much higher adoption rates and meaningful business process improvements.
User Acceptance Testing also builds confidence in ERP users that may be averse to change, especially in an organization that is comfortable with legacy systems and processes. UAT helps to build confidence in the ERP because end users gain first-hand experience in a safe setting prior to going live.
3. What are the main challenges users face while doing UAT?
There are three main challenges when it comes to UAT: time, documentation, and defect tracking and management.
User Acceptance Testing is time-consuming. It has to be performed by business users whose plates are already full. Therefore, the testing is often an afterthought and a rushed process rife with errors. This defeats the whole purpose.
Testing also involves proper documentation. This requires even more time and effort from the end user. Simply copying and pasting information into clunky spreadsheets is inefficient and ends up wasting even more of the business user’s time.
And finally, defect tracking and management is arguably the most critical aspect of UAT. A small ambiguity in defect reports can delay a fix for several days. Proper planning and effective communication are critical to effective team collaboration, and traditional manual UAT lacks this functionality.
4. How does Opkey solve ERP and UAT challenges?
Opkey is the industry’s leading tool for User Acceptance Testing. It’s a no-code test automation tool built specifically for automated UAT testing because it allows business users to test applications without needing any technical expertise.
Opkey supports 14+ ERPs and comes loaded with features like predictive intelligence, test mining, and intelligent test data management to help enterprises efficiently complete UAT, ensuring ERP projects are completed on-time and under-budget.
Here’s how we do it.
Zero-code testing automation: Given the fact that how to write UAT test scripts is one of the biggest pain points business users struggle with, Opkey’s zero-code automation platform is the perfect solution. Non-technical users can create automated UAT tests with a drag-and-drop test builder, or our ERP-aware record and play-back engine.
Reporting & analysis: Feedback must be documented and developers must be able to understand the issues reported. With Opkey, end-users, and schedule tests to run whenever they’d like. Additionally, Opkey automates test documentation, ensuring robust compliance, and streamlining efforts.
Test data management: Opkey ensures data set availability in the right combination, right format, right time, and right place. The system autonomously creates synthetic data from defined parameters and relationships, leveraging test-mining technology and synthetic data generation.
Integration with test management tools: Opkey natively integrates with test management tools to better align business users with their IT team. Our defect management tools reduce time wasted on ineffective communication between testing and development teams by automatically alerting developers to errors during testing and attaching the exact steps that produced them.
A successful ERP implementation begins and ends with testing. User Acceptance Testing is critical to the process, as the sooner the people actually using the software are involved and engaged, the better the adoption, usage rates, application quality, and overall ROI of the project will be.
The quickest way to lose money on a massive ERP investment is to ignore UAT testing or treat it as an afterthought. Test early, test often, and by all means, make User Acceptance Testing an integral part of your program.
Originally published at https://www.opkey.com.