Stage 1: Project Planning Meeting –Kick-Off meeting.
The implementation starts with the Project Planning Meeting: Kick-Off Meeting. The aims of this meeting are as follows:
- To introduce PL, CC, CTs, ITT’s and PT.
- To define the scope, mission, objectives, vision and other parameters of the project
- To review the implementation schedule and establish basic project milestones
- To set up a communication and reporting process
- To allocate resource and define expectations
- To agree on days the committees will be meeting and reviewing the project. Recommended once a week.
- To develop a contingency plan for some unforeseen circumstances that might hamper or delay the implementation process. (What if scenarios)
- To prepare the implementation budget if required.
This meeting should be organised with the CEO (in attendance) in order to drive commitment and build enthusiasm.
Stage 2: System Installation
This will involve the verification of the available systems specification in line with the software requirement, the installation of the database management system and loading of the software. This will be done with the ITT members.
Stage 3: Core Team Training
This is a hands-on training on the software organized for CT team members. The essence of this training is to introduce the software capabilities, processes and functions. While the training will be on the modules purchased, emphasises will mainly be on Reports, Transaction (Business processes) and Master File inputs.
At the end of this training, the users should be able to identify some of their requirements and the reports that are of high priority to their operations. It is advised that they should decide on their top 10 or 20 reports. If need be, they can identify the required changes needed in the same reports to conform to their need. It is necessary to note that these changes will be subjected to our Customisation Requirement Policy.
Stage 4: Analysis of Current Business Processes.
The purpose of this exercise is to analyze the current business process in order to identify what they do, how they do it and if necessary why they do it that way. At the end of this activity, non-value-added processes/practices will be identified for appropriate action by the CC. Also, best practices that are not been observed will be identified for proper action by the CC. This will be used for the gap analysis report. This will be done for each functional department.
The activities of this stage are:
- To examine and evaluate the business functions and processes
- To define and prioritise business and production goals
- To develop the definitive implementation timeline and implementation plan.
- To identify the number of records for data conversion and/input
- To identify the variables to be used in the configuration of the software
- To identify their requirements and priorities
The deliverables of this stage are a formal vision statement of the detailed objective, and the configuration and customisation requirements.
Stage 5: Gap Analysis
Here, the current business processes are compared with the software operations to identify the differences. A document showing “would be” processes with areas of change will be prepared for adoption by the CC.
Stage 6: Walkthrough Presentation
During this presentation, the results of the analysis of the current business processes and the gap analysis will be presented to the PT. This will give each member the opportunity to contribute in the “would be” business process and workflow”. The outcome of this presentation is an agreed “to be” process that would be used to configured in the software. Also, some customisation requirements may be identified and agreed
Stage 7: Configuration and Customisation
Here, the software is configured and customised in line with the agreed “to be” process. Customisation is time consuming, adds to implementation cost and some aspects may be difficult to implement immediately due to system design. These ones will be referred to our Software Product development unit and will be implemented later.
Stage 8: Migration Plan Interface/Integration
This stage involves data gathering and conversion (or data capturing), testing and refining of the customised process model, designing interfaces and integration to ensure that the software works in concert with all modules. There must be an agreed cut off date for data conversion.
Key deliverables include handling all data files, specifications, upload/download, maintenance procedure and so on. During the period, the IT team are trained on the technical aspect of the Software. Based on situations, there may be need to do data conversion at least twice: the first test data conversion and the final one.
Stage 9: User Training
The purpose of this stage is to train the users on using the Software to do their job on the converted data. This is used to verify the correctness of the converted data. Key users who are the process owners will have a full on-the-job training on how their functions/processes will be driven by Software and impact other business processes. Key users should then be used to train end-users in their respective areas. This is a train the trainer training. The number of persons to be trained will be agreed and they must be available for the training.
Stage 10: Parallel Testing/Run
In this stage the entire system are tested using converted data and results being checked thoroughly to ensure full compliance of desired results. This is a complete simulation testing of the live system to validate its controls, performance, interface/integration and integrity of the migrated data in line with the objectives of the project. Its key deliverable is acceptance of the test results. Most times, this parallel run and the user training stages are done simultaneously. The parallel run will continue singly after the training has been completed
Stage 11: Cutover Plan and Go Lives
Here, the strategy to execute a timely and effective rollout of the software is developed. The rollout itself may either be phased or performed all at once; the choice depends on which approach will disrupt business the least. This system goes live after the cutover plan has been executed.
Stage 12: Continuous Improvement and Support
This is more of a philosophy than an actual stage. To ensure continuous improvement, a post-implementation audit will be performed after the system has been up and running for three to six months to test whether or not the anticipated Return On Investment and business benefits are being realized.
Also, post go-live support is provided for a period of around three months after going live to be able to rectify teething problems that may surface during the live run. A customer that signed an upgrade agreement will be provided with the latest releases of our Software functionality.