Managing EBusiness Suite
Care & feeding your E-Business Suite deployment – Creating a highly effective E-Business Suite support organization
Many of us have experienced the post-go-live transition when our systems integrator has ensured us that things are stable, and they will only be a phone call away should we need them. This period is a stark contrast to the highly structured project period. Hopefully, knowledge transfer to permanent resources has begun quite some time ago. Ideally, you have a highly skilled staff of ‘run and maintain’ DBAs, Developers and Business Analysts whom you are in the process of reallocating to sustaining activities from project activities during this critical transition. This model minimizes costs and eliminates knowledge transfer activities. Many consultants find this period unappealing – they are naturalized to the structure of the project and are conditioned to be somewhat nomadic.
For the IT Leader, this is very much a philosophical change. The project was about getting the system or solution in place as well as all of the business processes for all of its end-users. The ‘run and maintain’ period is generally about continual improvement to the IT business processes with regard to support and enhancement of the new system or solution. In essence the successful IT Leader excels at providing a highly responsive (and exceedingly proactive) support team for minimal cost.
The successful IT Leader is able to accomplish this through leadership, accurate intelligence, and a highly capable & motivated cross-functional team.
Because the IT Leader generally manages a shared services organization, the goal should be to create a level playing field to deal with all of the customers upon. The best way to create this sort of framework is to establish a steering team comprised of all of the E-Business Suite stakeholders to meet periodically (I find weekly to be best). This works well be cause not only is there a level playing field between the shared services manager and all of his/her customers (business-area managers), but each of the customers is accountable to one another as a result of this framework.
The primary goal of these weekly steering team meetings is to:
1. facilitate communication between all stakeholders
2. review & prioritize all open issues & enhancement requests
Because the IT Leader likely relies upon each stakeholder in order to determine priority, this framework ensures that stakeholders are accountable to each other for the priorities they assign to issues or enhancements for each of their areas. Note that real-time intelligence of all open issues and enhancements, as well as a way to prioritize them is fundamental to this framework.
This ‘working meeting’ format is also effective at real-time management of technical & functional resources so that they can be marshaled & re-deployed at a moments notice or their allocations be ‘tweaked’ based on availability and on adjusting business priorities.
Author : Trace Bell