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Posts Tagged ‘Sure Step Methodology Deployment Phase’

Sure Step Methodology An Overview

Posted by Nitin Dhawan on June 18, 2009

Microsoft Dynamics Sure Step provides partners, customers and Microsoft Consulting Services with end to end, business process flows that guide users through field-tested best practices, proven project management principles and user-friendly tools, enabling deployment, migration, configuration and upgrade of Microsoft Dynamics products.
Sure Step supports a broad range of products: Dynamics AX, Dynamics NAV, Dynamics GP, Dynamcis SL and Dynamics CRM. And different project types: Full Implementation, Rapid Implementation, Optimization and Upgrade. Products and project types can be combined. Microsoft provides the Sure Step Overview Diagram for sales and training situations.
 
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Benefits of Sure Step Methodology
Sure Step helps improve services’ delivery and efficiency so that increased profitability and customer satisfaction are achieved.This can be accomplished because Sure Step provides a consistent framework and a repeatable process that help improve the customer experience. All of this helps you hone the way you deploy Microsoft Dynamics solutions. Sure Step provides guidance for partners who support small, medium, and large implementations, including:

  1. Rapid project types on projects which primarily require a smaller implementation with little to no need for customization, typically in the small business    and lower mid market space.
  2. Standard project types on projects with more users and some customization required, typically for customers in the mid market space.
  3. Enterprise project types on projects for a large client with multiple sites and a large number of users, typically in the corporate account and enterprise   spaces.
Sure Step Methodology has six phases: Diagnostic, Analysis, Design, Development, Deployment & Operation. While Diagnostic is a pre-implementation phase, the Analysis through Operation phases represent the five phases of an implementation project. The Operation phase also encompasses post-implementation activities, in that it extends the project lifecycle beyond the implementation and into the Support stage.
Diagnostic Phase The first phase in the Sure Step Methodology is the Diagnostic phase, which marks the transition from the sales cycle to implementation. The Diagnostic phase consists primarily of high-level planning and high-level analysis of the customer’s business processes and infrastructure. The goal of the Diagnostic phase is to collect information to define a high-level project scope and then create a customer proposal for the remaining phases of the implementation project.The Diagnostic phase consists of the following activities:
1. Diagnostic preparation
2. High-level analysis of business processes
3. Detailed analysis of selected business processes (Optional)
4. Project scoping
5. Infrastructure analysis
6. Project planning
7. Proposal management
Analysis Phase The activities in the Analysis phase help identify the decisions the customer must make that will guide the implementation.This phase is similar to Diagnostic in that work involves:
1. Determining and documenting current business processes.
2. Describing improved business processes
3. Describing any modifications needed for the system to support future business processes.At the end of this phase, customers will have a good understanding of the proposed Microsoft Dynamics CRM implementation. This includes the project cost, deliverables, and milestones.

The Analysis phase consists of the following activities:
1.Planning
2.Training
3.Data migration
4.Detailed analysis of business processes
5.Document and present functional requirements
6.Proposal management

Design Phase Building on the deliverables created during Analysis, this phase consists of determining the design for the overall MS Dynamics implementation and designing solutions for specific customizations, integr-ations, and data migration needed to satisfy business requirements identified during the Analysis phase. The primary deliverables from this phase are a high-level design specification and a detailed technical design specification, both that satisfy the high-level decisions determined in the previous phases. These design specifications will guide the development activities in the following phase.The Design phase consists of the following activities:
1. Planning
2. Data migration design
3. Design specification
4. Technical design specification
5. Proposal management
Development Phase The primary purpose of the Development phase is to develop the customizations,integrations, and data migration processes that were defined in the design specifications created and approved in the Design phase. The primary deliverables of development are the completed and tested customizations, reports, integrations, and any data migration programs and processes. Each component developed in this phase is tested and verified to be functioning as defined by the Functional requirements, design specifications, and testing criteria.An important feature of the Development phase is that development activities,such as individual features, integrations, or data migration, can continue through the Development phase at the same time. This depends on the size and complexity of the project and the number of resources available to work on individual components.The Development phase consists of the following activities and tasks:
1. Planning
2. Environment setup
3. Development
4. Customer testing and acceptance
Deployment Phase The primary deliverable from the Deployment phase is a functioning live system.Activities in this phase prepare the infrastructure, application environment, and end-users for the cutover to the new system.
Activities in this phase include the following:
1. Preparing Go-Live plans, system test plans, and end-user training plans.
2. Configuring the live and test environments
3. Performing system testing and load testing using a subset of the customer’s data
4. Preparing and delivering end-user training
5. Completing final data migration and validation
6. Completing all Go-Live activities to launch the new systemFor rapid implementation projects, there is an additional activity at the beginning of the Deployment phase. Because rapid implementation projects go to deployment directly from the Diagnostic phase, you must complete additional activities to prepare for the deployment. After you complete those activities, a rapid deployment continues:The Deployment phase consists of the following activities:
1. Rapid implementation
2. Planning
3. Environment configuration
4. Testing
5. Go-Live
Operation Phase The primary purpose of the Operation phase is to support the customer technically and functionally during the initial Go-Live period for the new system.Additionally, you will perform tasks to close the project. At the end of the phase,you transition the project to the customer, and pursue the opportunity to provide on-going support and continued account management.The Operation phase consists of the following activities:
1. Project closing
2. Post live support
3. Final acceptance sign-off
4. Project review
5. On-going product support
6. On-going account management
The Sure Step Methodology model also defines two additional phases that you can perform after a Microsoft Dynamics solution goes live in the customer’s production environment:
Optimization Phase The Optimization phase is designed to provide structure to manage post Go-Live processes. This phase also provides an opportunity to maintain a relationship
with the customer after an initial implementation project or as a way to provide services to a new customer.The purpose of this phase is to review a customer’s existing Microsoft Dynamics implementation and adjust business processes, configuration, or performance to enhance the effectiveness of the solution. The Optimization phase mirrors a full implementation process because it encapsulates many of the same activities and tasks.The phase includes:
1. Analysis activities to gather information about process,configuration, and performance
2. Proposals for scope of work
3. The work to perform and deploy the optimization itself.

After completing the initial Analysis activities in the Optimization phase, you may determine that a full implementation approach is required to address the
customer’s issues.

An Optimization project consists of the following activities:
1. Analysis
2. Planning
3. Defining optimizations
4. Deploying optimizations
5. Operation

Upgrade Phase The purpose of the upgrade phase is to upgrade a customer to a major new version of Microsoft Dynamics (upgrade projects are not intended for service
pack releases). Like an optimization project, an upgrade project consists of many similar activities performed in a full implementation project. This includes analysis, planning, testing, training, and upgrading the customer’s production environment.During the upgrade analysis activity, you may determine that the complexity of an upgrade requires a full implementation. This starts at the Diagnostic phase.An Upgrade project consists of the following activities:
1. Analysis
2. Planning
3. Performing the upgrade
4. Testing
5. Go-Live
6. Operation
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