Why Project ERP is a Worthwhile Investment for CROs: Ensuring ROI

ACimageTo stay competitive, CROs need to focus on efficient project management and operational excellence. A project-based Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) provides better organization, document management, scheduling and resource planning and communication.

However, one of the biggest challenges CROs face is when to risk on technology investments that can streamline processes while juggling limited resources and budgets that make an ERP investment seem too risky.

When it comes to selecting and implementing an ERP system, CROs are generally hesitant over particular these challenges:

Selecting an ERP system

CROs need to analyze their needs before comparing ERP systems. Basic systems will manage back office tasks and project management, but will they fully connect all your core business units including human resources, scheduling and finance? Meanwhile, larger systems may include unnecessary functions and complex processes that require additional investments in resources and training. CROs should start their ERP selection with companies that can offer a User Requirement Analysis. This crucial first step allows SMBs to define requirements that meet defined budget expectations.

Implementing an ERP System

CROs may argue that they lack the resources and technological competence to implement their ERP system which translates into needing additional outside consultancy for installation and extensive training. CROs should, first of all, keep in mind that implementation is the biggest milestone in the overall investment. ERP implementation will improve processes and efficiency in the long term, so CROs shouldn’t focus heavily on the costs of implementation but rather avoid “add-on” costs during implementation.

Lack of Resources

Once again, CROs need to see the long term benefit of the ERP system. Once administration processes are automated and departments are interconnected, employees will be able to spend less time on tedious “housekeeping” tasks and focus on client and business objectives.

Unpredictability

main_image_careersUnpredictability can hit CROs hard in that most will have dedicate most of their resources to managing unpredictability, and it can take a bigger toll on budgets and efficient project management which may affect communication with the client.

Document management and administrative tasks are streamlined and electronically archived so CROs can have a proper project audit trail and Sponsor records. Most importantly, a unified system that connects a project plan with the budget and resource scheduling and includes automatic alerting, CROs can be sure projects are on track and reduce unpredictability and better manage communication with the client should an unforeseen event occur.

ARITHMOSCENTRUM – Guaranteeing Return on Investment for CROs

A unified system allows for the sharing of information and data without needing multiple systems and reports and creates a central hub for document management and quality control. Administration costs are reduced in the intermediate to long term by integrating operations and business which requires less interaction between departments for back office tasks. More importantly, with ArithmosCentrum CROs can be up and running within a few days with no disruption to current projects. The system is entirely configurable to use your own terminology, processes and templates, and historical data can be imported during set up.

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ArithmosCentrum and the CRO Project Manager: Managing Projects on Budget

logo onlyDelivering projects on budget and sacrificing time, quality or employee satisfaction is a paradox afflicting organizations. Effective project management can be the answer. 

The nature of projects and outsourcing today is composed of complex global projects managed by virtual teams and project variance. Outsourcing strategies and project variance leads to cost variation within a budget which usually is unaccounted for. Completing projects on budget can be achieved by managing four core domains: assumptions, your team, risk, and the “system”. Here is how ArithmosCentrum can help CRO Project Managers.

Planning and Forecasting

Effective and accurate planning is the first step towards successfully completing a project on a budget. Assumptions on units, resources, quality systems and technical requirements are often forecast by one party and left to another to deliver on. Knowledge management is a must. The planning phase also include risk management and communication planning.

AC allows the Project Manager to work directly with the Business Development Manager to learn the customer’s requests. Once a Project Plan is complete, the BDM is notified and can review costs and timelines. The Financial Officer is then automatically notified that a budget needs to be created.

Controlling and Monitoring

The Project Manager should be able to answer the following questions when it comes to study metrics and reporting:

  • What will be measured?
  • Why and how will we measure these metrics?
  • What are the results telling me about the status of this study?

AC allows the Project Manager to create custom reports and a customized dashboard to follow the study metrics important to each project.

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Communication

Communication is essential to collaboration and team performance. The Project Manager is the leader of any project and needs to be able to communicate with the team: BDMs, Financial Officer, Human Resources and operations.

ArithmosCentrum allows the Project Manager to communicate in an automatic way by sending alerts when certain tasks need to be completed. AC can also produce reports when projects are running off course in terms of resources, timelines or costs so the Project Manager can communicate with the right people.

Using ArithmosCentrum, the Project Manager can always be sure a project is staying on budget. The system automatically tracks resource planning and costs per unit or hourly rate, and the Project Manager is alerted when the budget is overrun.

Here are the inputs/outputs for the AC Project Management function:

Project Management (2)