How to Keep Your Business Running Smoothly Through the Implementation Process

Enda Cunnane
On: 11 Jan 2018
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Investing in new technology is a major step for any business, so one thing you don’t want to do is trip up at the implementation stage.

Advance planning, open dialogue and effective resource allocation will ensure a smooth migration.

You’ll notice the benefits – but your customers won’t notice a thing.

Almost half of those who took part in our recent Irish Business Mindset survey said they were planning significant investment in business operations systems and infrastructure improvements for 2018. This makes it the ideal time to ask Enda Cunnane, Three’s ‎Business Implementation and Transformation Manager, how to ensure the implementation of your business’s technology investment is as smooth and seamless as possible.

The key to success lies mainly in the planning, but there’s far more to that than simply fixing a date. In fact, as soon as you have decided on the technology you want to install, you need to begin consulting with implementation specialists – and carry on doing so until your new technology is successfully up and running.

For as the First Commandment of Implementation states:

Planning ahead can never begin too soon.

Anything that can go wrong, won’t.

“Anything that can go wrong, will” must have been coined by someone who failed to prepare properly. Most things that go wrong do so because they were unforeseen, and with enough knowledge, experience and far-sightedness, the unforeseen simply shouldn’t occur.

A well-versed implementation team begins consultations with the customer and detailed planning from the very outset of a project and planning continues for 2-4 weeks. This ensures a complete understanding of the customer’s existing network, the planned changes and the issues that may arise.

However, identifying and preparing for risks is only one aspect of the consultation. It’s also the opportunity for the customer to reveal their worries and concerns. They vary widely from customer to customer and may be very different from the risks already identified, but they’re no less important. Once concerns have been aired, a mitigation plan can be put in place and the customer can be reassured that anything that can go wrong, won’t.

Talk is cheap and not talking can be very costly.

The Second Commandment of Implementation states:

Communication must be honest, open and continuous.

The planning stage should eliminate risk, highlight potential issues and put plans in place to address any that arise. The unexpected can prove costly in terms of time and money, so maintaining an open dialogue prevents surprises and will help keep implementation on schedule and on budget.

Communications can be organised to suit the parties involved. There’s no point swamping executives with detail and no wish to starve IT managers of information. For example, a traffic light dashboard for the former will provide the clear, high-level indication of progress they need, while the latter require a lengthier, detailed project document, including a RAIDA log (Risks, Assumptions, Issues, Dependencies, Actions).

A flying start

The Third Commandment of Implementation:

Allocate the resources to get things right from the start.

This could mean allocating a senior engineer to support the customer onsite while their HQ or first branch site is going live. In fact, whatever resources are required to make the implementation process seamless should be allocated as necessary. If the right amount of planning and risk mitigation have already taken place, implementation should be smooth and successful anyway.

For instance, when Three migrated a major fast food retailer to their new network, it took no more than 3 minutes at the first branch. However, the Implementation Team’s commitment to open dialogue and willingness to adapt to lessons learned, meant that subsequent branch implementations took less than 1 minute. If you were a customer standing in line for a burger, you wouldn’t have noticed a thing. Which for the Implementation Team is a result to dine out on.

Talk to our Business Advice Team now to discuss your upcoming ICT projects. Call: 1800 330 303 or;