Consolidating an ERP: 9 steps for a smoother, more efficient transition [Infographic]

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Consolidating an ERP after a hospital merger or acquisition

9 steps to combine systems for a smoother, more efficient transition

As hospital M&As reach all-time highs, health systems are challenged to unite their internal operations, including enterprise resource planning (ERP). But with a mishmash of processes, people, and platforms, ERP consolidation may seem easier said than done. What’s the secret to success?

  1. Strategize with ERP end users in mind

EHR users skew toward clinicians. ERP users, by contrast, tend to be nonclinical. And they need to be engaged accordingly—more talk of business and less of patient care. Ahead of any ERP consolidation, ensure your plan speaks to the right audience:




End Users

Nonclinical Staff

Clinical Staff 

Top Influencers

Finance and Accounting

Clinicians, Schedulers, and Billing Staff

What to Discuss

Business Operations

Patient Care and Experience

  1. Engage leaders from the get-go

Depending on your organizational roadmap, consolidation champions include the CFO, COO, or CIO. But no matter who it is, bring sponsors in to showcase their involvement to all other stakeholders. Early leadership support helps affirm long-term buy-in from everyone else.

67% - Hospital leaders who say lack of leadership buy-in is a top barrier to hospital change

  1. Conduct a business value analysis

A business value analysis explores all possibilities within a potential ERP consolidation, establishing a purpose-based blueprint into the “why” that all stakeholders can get behind.

What to ask in your analysis

  • What do we want to achieve or change with consolidation?
  • Should we keep and extend our existing system or do something new?
  • What are our other possibilities?
  • What’s the risk of acting or not acting now?
  1. Embrace organizational change management

Understand the implications of change and avoid its unexpected disruptions with a codified agility plan, ideally one that’s proven such as the Prosci ADKAR® Model. Moreover, ensure all stakeholders understand what organizational change management means and how it impacts end users.

6X – Programs are six times more likely to succeed with a solid change management plan.

  1. Prioritize people management

Lead projects with a focus on what matters: people. Platform consolidations can be complex and hard to understand, so whenever possible, simplify and humanize. Demonstrate your competence and that you’re not going to be disruptive to employees’ worlds. And most of all, explain the why: Buy-in comes more easily when the vision becomes clear.

Roughly 7 in 10 organizational transformations miss key objectives, often because of employee resistance. 

  1. Create a clear ERP governance structure

Governance ensures the business case for ERP consolidation stays front and center—and a clear governance structure helps projects maintain pace, break barriers, and mitigate risk from start to finish. 

Governance checklist

  • Are we bringing in the right resources?
  • Do we have enough personnel?
  • Are the right people in the right roles?
  • Are we getting signoff when and where needed?
  1. Bring ERP and EHR together

EHR and ERP shouldn’t be siloed. When considering your next systems change, remember that the journey of one platform consolidation can inform another’s. Uniting migrations as one operational endeavor often drives efficiencies from a general ledger approach.

What to consider in a general ledger model

  • Total cost of ownership
  • Future plans and vision
  • Process for patient care billing
  • Aggregate model for labor costing
  • Shared access to financial statements
  1. Enable accurate financial reporting

Give ERP consolidations the frameworks they need to demonstrate returns. Consider stakeholder needs, platform capabilities, designated timelines, and reporting goals to establish a realistic cadence of financial reporting that works for everyone.

14 – Months of time it takes to realize value from an ERP system

  1. Choose the right business partner

Scrutinize vendors closely. Partnering with someone with the qualified experience can help your transformation succeed and stay resilient in the years ahead.

Need guidance for your ERP consolidation project? See how Nordic can help at

Topics: mergers and acquisitions, featured, consulting services, ERP Consulting, erp-consultant

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