Rationale management as the basis of knowledge preservation for enterprise systems value-added resellers




Otero Lanuza, Miguel Angel

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Enterprise systems (ES) implementation, especially Enterprise Resource Planning systems (ERP), is an extensively researched topic in recent years. Existing papers focus mainly on the success or failure of the project analyzed from the client’s standpoint. Although authors agree that a successful implementation requires the participation of consultants from a Value-Added Reseller (VAR), little or no work has been published that examines the topic from this perspective. While it is true that this kind of implementation is not strictly related to the traditional software development lifecycle, the two have many things in common and the former can benefit from software engineering techniques. Intellectual capital found in the heads of consultants, developers, project managers, and all other project stakeholders is VAR’s main asset as well as in most of software-related organizations. Hence, it is critical to preserve it in order to safeguard the foundation of these organizations. The goal of this paper is to propose rationale management as the basis of knowledge preservation for enterprise systems VARs. Enterprise systems implementation process, including its actors, challenges, and the knowledge that surrounds it, is examined to justify the proposal. To assess the perception of real-world VARs about knowledge management applicability and their existing strategies, a questionnaire was applied to 3 executives. Their answers confirmed that knowledge is considered vital to their organizations but the methodologies as well as the tools currently utilized to preserve it are rudimentary and distant from the theoretical literature.



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