Technology is the backbone of most companies’ strategic vision to meet customer, market and industry demands. However, evaluating, selecting and then deploying a new business application into an organization’s operations can seem like a daunting task. And, while software technologies are increasingly important to an organization’s growth, their successful deployment and internal adoption can also lead to costly failures.
Therefore, whether launching a new software technology across operations or migrating from one to another, having an accurate evaluation and selection process in place is critical. operational efficiency. It also reinforces transparency and fluidity throughout the organization. In fact, using a thorough assessment mapping process is one of the most powerful tools an organization has.
Failing technology initiatives are linked to a huge waste of resources, namely a waste of time and money. Without an established assessment and selection process, organizations run the risk of confusion, delays and conflicts within their teams’ operations. So before rushing to deploy new technology, companies should consider these five important, but often overlooked, best practices:
1. Establish required features and resources
The most important factor is to have a well-defined process plan that identifies software requirements. This will create a clearer picture of user stories, integration points, and automation needs that may be lacking. Defining existing pain points in current processes is as important as defining new requirements and a desired process map of the proposed business application solution. The clear description of the functionalities required and the identification of the key resources make it possible to determine and avoid any trap likely to block a deployment.
Additionally, when identifying key resources, it is critical to keep lines of communication open with key stakeholders and assign responsibilities to all participants from the early stages of the project. It is essential to create a “one team” mindset, establishing requirements based on the needs of departments, staff and managers. It’s also important to consider the intricacies of deployment, looking at on-premises versus cloud, evaluating number of locations and number of users as well as permission levels. In doing so, he will ensure that the initiative meets everyone’s expectations.
2. Understand customer needs
Another key factor to consider is how this newly deployed business application will serve your customers. Performing an audit of the existing system will reveal how customers are currently being served and uncover gaps. This assessment is an essential element in determining how to move forward.
Increasingly, organizations are relying on technologies that balance consistency and flexibility to realize more of the benefits of speed to market. In an age where customers expect exactly what they want, when they want it, forward-thinking organizations must consider a 360-degree approach to fully realize the true value of any technology investment. By fully understanding the customer, key speed-to-market goals will be incorporated and can be achieved from day one.
3. Pay attention to the budget
In order to create budget metrics, organizations should take a close look at the company’s cost/benefit analysis and ROI thresholds before starting the project. Using a modeling technique, organizations will be able to estimate project effort, development hours, staff size, risk appetite, material requirements, and more.
Another aspect to consider is the staff hours required to maintain the planned schedule. If they are not taken into account, sufficient resources will not be allocated, which could lead to missed deadlines as well as additional expenses. Additionally, an important area to review is upfront and hidden costs as well as ongoing capital expenditures (maintenance, operational expenses, upgrade costs, additional features, support staff, etc.). It is necessary to project these costs for the next three to five years in operational budget plans.
4. Integrate security at all levels
A new deployment of line-of-business applications should not compromise any security best practices; instead, it must operate seamlessly and comply with existing security standards. Robust security becomes even more critical during a period of deployment.
The software vendor should assess the level of security and compliance required by the organization. Implementing vital security tools such as multi-factor authentication can strengthen security against potential cyber threats. Therefore, it is important to establish who can access the data and have the ability to adjust and revoke permission levels as needed.
5.Set integration parameters
Finally, you need to fully recognize the level of integration required during implementation by reviewing the current technology stack and identifying the associated benefits, challenges, and costs. Depending on the level of integration, additional hours may be required to have all systems fully operational.
Additionally, true success of a new or upgraded technology deployment in an organization is not achieved without understanding the overall operational benefits of the new system. Therefore, before going live, it is imperative to load test and closely examine the behavior of the business application solution against your original requirements as well as typical day-to-day business scenarios and processes. By closely examining the capabilities of the new system against the original requirements, companies will be well placed to determine its current and future effectiveness.