After spending 5 years implementing SAP CRM solutions using ASAP implementation methodology, which take months or even years, I recently made the switch to focus on implementing SAP CRM Rapid-deployment solutions. What attracted me to focus on rapid-deployment solution implementations is delivering simple and scalable solutions based on SAP Best Practices in just few weeks to jump start the customer with a SAP footprint.

In order to deliver cost-friendly solutions that address the customer’s core business processes in a short time requires a defined implementation methodology. The rapid-deployment solution implementation methodology sets standards and ensures that all SAP Rapid Deployment Solutions leverage, share and re-use the best practices thus enabling repeatable and cumulative success. In order to ensure each rapid-deployment solution implementation uses the standardize approach, SAP has provided a central tool, Step-by-Step Guide (SBS), that houses all of the assets required during implementation, including accelerators and knowledge-transfer materials. The Step-by-Step Guide is built specifically for every solution, in which all of the service execution content and accelerators are arranged in a logical manner to represent the rapid-deployment solution implementation roadmap. Therefore, it sets the way for a successful rapid-deployment solution implementation.

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Now, let’s explore how the Step-by-Step Guide leads the implementation team and customer through the rapid-deployment solution implementation.

The rapid-deployment solution implementation methodology has 3 stages:

1.       Start

2.       Deploy

3.       Run

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Once SAP and the customer finalize the deal by signing a Statement of Work (SOW) contract, the Start phase begins. The SAP delivery manager performs the initial steps to identify the project implementation team and conducts an initial call to kick off the project. Some of the other activities that are performed in this phase are:

1.       Prepare Project – using the following accelerators, the SAP project works with the customer to organize the on-site kick-off meeting and prepares necessary documents, such as WBS and Consultant Delivery Guide, for efficient deployment.

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2.       Project Preparation Meeting – The purpose of this on-site meeting is to introduce the project team, align on activities and responsibilities, and present the fixed scope of the solution.

3.       Scope Validation Workshop – using the following accelerators from the Step-by-Step Guide, the SAP project lead moderates the on-site kick-off workshop for project team members from SAP and the customer. The SAP project team records the detailed configuration options that the customer selects from the options list for rapid-deployment solution. After a successful completetion of the workshop, the SAP project lead prepares the scope document, which is approved by the customer. 4.JPG

4.       Confirm Installation – using the following accelerators from the Step-by-Step Guide, the SAP project lead and customer project team confirms the software is installed and the environment is ready for the deployment of the solution.

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Once the Scope document is approved and the system environment is ready, the Deploy phase starts for the project. The activities performed in the Deploy phase are:

1.       Activate and Confirm Solution – using the following accelerators from the Step-by-Step Guide, the SAP project team activates and documents the business processes of this rapid-deployment solution in the customer system. In addition, the SAP project team performs initial testing to ensure the solution is activated without issues.

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2.       Implement Options – using the following accelerators from the Step-by-Step Guide, the SAP project team implements the options that the customer selected for RDS implementation during the Scope Validation workshop.

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3.       Train Key Users – using the following accelerators from the Step-by-Step Guide, the SAP project team further enables members of the customer project team to understand the rapid-deployment solution  as well as trains the key users as defined in the SOW.

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4.       Setup Customer Data – using the following accelerators from the Step-by-Step Guide, the SAP project team ensures the deployed solution is ready for use with the customer’s data.

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5.       Test Solution – using the following accelerators fromthe Step-by-Step Guide, the SAP and customer project teams perform testing of the implemented solution to ensure all business processes are deployed without issues. 

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6.       Switch to Production – using the following accelerators from the Step-by-Step Guide, the SAP project and customer project teams finalize the import of configuration into the production system. The SAP project team ensures the configurations successfully transports into productive environment and the deployed solution is working without any issues.

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At this point, the Deploy phase concludes and Run phase starts for the project. During this phase, the following activities occur:

1.       Prepare End-User Training – the customer project team or key users prepare the rollout of the rapid-deployment solution to end users to ensure the end-users can work with the solution independently.

2.       Hand-Over Solution – using the following accelerator from the Step-by-Step Guide, the SAP project lead ensures that all key project deliverables, as described in the statement of work, and the actions from all phases and activities defined in the project schedule have been completed to the customer’s satisfaction, and any critical outstanding issues have been reviewed. At this point, the project is formally accepted by the customer and the project closure activities begin.

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3.       Go-Live – the SAP project team hands over the rapid-deployment solution to the customer project team. At this point, the customer can go live with the solution, if appropriate, and make it available for the end users. The SAP project team provides support for the solution during the period immediately following the transition in case of issues. At this point, the project comes to a close.

As you can see, the rapid-deployment solution implementation methodology is very organized and structured. It provides all of the necessary assets and content to enable the project team for a successful rapid-deployment solution implementation. In addition, it ensures all rapid-deployment solution implementations are consistent across customers and industries.

When I received my first rapid-deployment solution implementation customer project within couple of weeks of joining the Solution Delivery Center (SDC) organization at SAP America, Inc., I was apprehensive about being successful with the implementation as I was very new to the organization as well as the rapid-deployment solution topic. However, the rapid-deployment solution implementation methodology made it very easy for me to successfully execute the project for a major Oil & Gas company, who was new to SAP CRM.  The rapid-deployment solution implementation methodology’s guided approach via Step-by-Step Guide gave me the tools I needed to successfully implement the solution and my prior consulting experience gave me the skills to manage customer’s expectations for the rapid-deployment solution project. At the end of the project, the customer was happy with the delivered solution and the activities performed along the way, which states the true success of the rapid-deployment solution implementation methodology. 

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8 Comments

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  1. Bob McGlynn

    I wanted to point out that there are two different Step by Step Guide versions. The SCN has a variety of participants with different roles who, when reading this blog, may wonder about the difference they see when accessing a Step by Step Guide.

    There is a Step by Step Guide available for customers. This version follows the exact same methodology and follows the same steps. The customer version does include documentation, though won’t have those documents specific for a consultant attached to it.

    The version that Puji is examining is the consultant’s view of the Step by Step. This version provides some additional consulting documents that would otherwise have to be prepared by the consultant before a project begins. This facilitates a consultant being able to move rapidly to start, deploy and run that RDS solution.

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  2. Andrew Hodges

    I work in the HCM space, but the same principles for Rapid Deployment Solutions methodology still apply – this is very helpful from the point of view of how the model works in practice – I’ll share this in my own blog for HCM and I expect that this has been shared in other social media too. Thanks, great article.

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  3. Olga Galaichuk

    I have a question about SBS guide creation. Who will create guide, If company elaborates RDS? SAP or Partner?  And if it’s responsibility of the Partner, in what way will Partner do it? Does any program or template exist to create SBS guide?

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    1. Bob McGlynn

      Olga,

      That’s a good question. The Step by Step is going to have to be created by SAP, since the assets necessary (structure files and templates) are not accessible by partners.

      The partner and SAP have to work closely together, because if this is an official SAP RDS project, in addition to the Step by Step, there are all the other details you don’t initially think about with something like this – go-to-market material, getting that RDS up on Service Marketplace, etc.

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        1. James Olcott

          Hi Bob or Puja:

          At my project, we are pre-implementation and are getting ready to choose our vendor who stipulates the use of RDS methodology in their materials. 

          As part of our internal planning, we are assembling the business requirements and business use scenarios to greet the vendor when they get here.  (Along with balloons, ice cream, and a petting zoo).

          Question:  What is the best practice as concerns the formatting of these documents?  Is it possible to get samples of “Scope Document” and “Business Process Documentation” so we can prepare as much information as possible at the right level of detail?  (Neither too little nor too much?)

          According to the proposed agreement, the vendor is obligated to write the functional and technical requirements.  So how best to prepare these goodies for them without trying to do their job (which is too much and keeps them from getting skin in the game) or avoiding documentation that might be too light or too vague to be helpful?

          Looking forward to your comments.

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          1. Mark Chalfen

            Hi James

            The question you should be asking the vendor is which RDS are they using?

            Are they using their own RDS, or the SAP RDS?

            You also need to ask yourselves internally what will you do when the process/ requirement you have defined does not align to the RDS?

            Normally – you would take the business process/ requirement and therefore the partner presents you with a CR?

            If you share your requirements and processes that you require to the Vendor, I would recommend that they need to provide a costing based on your scope, and not their scope.

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    2. Mark Chalfen

      to add to Bob’s comments – any extension to an existing RDS should be treated as a change request and managed how other CR’s are done on the client side.

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