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Welcome to part two of a series of blog posts delving into the CCOE.

Todays blog is centered around Quality Management.

When the two words “Quality / Management” are mentioned, many people immediately think ..Testing/Quality or Quality in a manufacturing plant…

Well now we have Quality Management for the CCOE.

In my last blog, I wrote about how today many CCOE’s are considered Service Providers, and how there is a need to keep moving forward, especially as we transform our businesses with the digital transformation that is upon us.

To be able to do this with as little disruption as possible, it is necessary to take on board the SAP Quality Management for CCOE.

Why do we need Quality Management in our CCOE – why is it so important?

As customers look to utilize their COE to drive continuous improvement, and have the ability to measure the value to the business, it is important that we provide a framework to enable innovation and control.

So what is Quality Management?

“Maximized business value through excellent end-to-end solution orchestration”

  • Quality Management is a combination of governance and standardization of processes built around quality oriented IT Operations.
  • Quality Management focuses on driving innovation, but implementing an automated and proactive approach to IT Operations
  • Quality Management focuses on a KPI framework that drives continuous improvement

By implementing Quality Management, a COE is able to:

Reimagine Business Models – Drive competitive advantage by transforming from an asset, to a service and outcome-based organization

Reimagine Business Processes – Change or even eliminate fundamental business processes as industries and businesses move towards digital technology

Reimagine Work – Step change improvements to existing processes based on real-time information provided to make the right decisions and drive immediate impact

Quality Managers look to utilize and integrate SAP Solution Manager for all IT Operations

Sounds good – right?

What about the benefits of having a Quality Managed approach?

  • Have a support organization that is flexible and able to scale to the needs of the business – think transparency!
  • Support business growth by having the ability for faster transformation of business requirements – think agile!
  • Have an IT organization that is flexible and has the ability to integrate the latest technology faster and for less cost – think budget!

In order to realize success, we need to have a structure that the CCOE can utilize.  This is where Quality Management provides 4 key roles across the CCOE, business and IT Operations, that works together.

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HEAT MAP OF QUALITY MANAGERS / AND KEY AREAS OF RESPONSIBILITY

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Let us start with discussing the QM for Business Process Improvement (BPI)

  • This is the key role that helps translate the business requirements
  • This is the key role that also works with the Innovation Control Center (ICC) to help prioritize innovation topics aligned with business needs

Tasks related to the BPI role:

  • Build a team for analyzing functional items in detail with the objective to provide improvement proposals
  • Facilitate fit / gap discussions with the business and include technology alignment and awareness
  • Ensures that processes are fully documented and stored in one Single Source of the Truth

Key benefits for the BPI role:

  • Builds a close relationship between IT and business, driving innovation
  • Drives reduced IT involvement, by standardization and documentation – utilize new innovative methodologies, such as Design Thinking
  • Ensures requirements / key needs from the business are understood and efficiently deployed by IT

The QM for BPI interacts closely with other Quality Managers:

  • Exchanging information on risks/trends and challenges in the business
  • Working closely with the IT teams, collaborating and exploring new products / technologies, thus driving innovative methodology
  • Defining jointly with the Change Manager and Applications team, KPI’s to track and report on the deployment of business requirements
  • Combined efforts to report on the success, and the value of improvements that are made

Next let us look at the QM for Protection of Investment (POI)

Key areas covered by this role:

  • Service Portfolio Management
  • Change Request / Control Management
  • Custom Code Management
  • Test Management
  • Release and Upgrade Management
  • Incident and Problem Management
  • Security

The QM for POI needs to ensure that the CCOE is able to support all business changes / innovation within a timely manner, while minimizing cost and risks.

Key Tasks:

  • Support the portfolio planning and master release planning (collaboration with PMO)
  • Ensure the corresponding end-to-end IT processes are established, reported on and improvements are implemented
  • Ensure minimal downtime, without disruption of existing solutions
  • Monitor and control proper maintenance of existing solutions and security
  • Manage decisions regarding custom code versus using SAP Standards

Key Benefits:

  • Mitigates risk against:
    • changes
    • upgrades
    • security
    • stability of the system landscape

The QM for POI interacts closely with other with Service Owners and other Quality Managers:

Within Service Portfolio Management:

  • Establish a strong liaison with the different Service Owners
    • Ensure continuous improvement of the Service Portfolio
  • Monitor portfolio decisions made by the PMO
  • Provide guidance to the PMO regarding prioritization criteria
  • Define KPI to track the deployment of business requirements with the Service Owners

Within Change Control Management

  • Supports the Change Manager to establish priority rules and guidelines for the CCOE
  • Participates in the Change Advisory Board (CAB) meetings, and monitors the decisions taken by the CAB
  • Identify process deviations and corrective actions
  • Works with Change and Transport Manager, defining KPI’s to track Change Requests from inception to deployment, according to the process and agreed upon plan
  • Identifying improvement opportunities and establishing improvement plans

Within Custom Code Management:

  • Works with PMO to define criteria / guidelines for custom code decisions
  • Monitor alignment on decisions regarding the use of custom code versus existing code
  • Support the ICC to map innovation requests, utilizing SAP Standards
  • Facilitate the process to identify and mitigate the risks which are induced by code modifications to upgrade, EHP and SP Stack implementation
  • Define KPI’s to track increase / decrease of custom code
  • Ensure appropriate documentation for custom code is in place

Within Test Management

  • Establish a strong liaison with the Business Process Owners, to ensure the business process library and test cases are kept current
  • Defining KPI’s along with the Test Manager and Application Team, to track success, quality and timing of testing activities, and establishing improvement actions
  • Review test documentation quality
  • Ensure testing tools and skill sets are in place
  • Ensure test cases have the appropriate business input / verification
  • Track incidents post-go live

Within Release and Upgrade Management

  • Support the Release Manager, ensuring minimal downtime, and no disruption of existing business and IT processes for project go-lives
  • Support the PMO on portfolio and master release planning
  • Support the Solution Owner, ensuring the technology framework and application components are maintained and up to date
  • Monitoring and controlling a central release master plan, in order to drive innovation
  • Define KPI’s along with the Release Manager and PMO, to track alignment of release management guidelines along with establishing improvement activities

Within Incident and Problem Management

  • Support the Incident Manager to define an end-to-end Incident and Problem Management process
  • Define KPI’s along with the Incident Manager and Application Team to track execution of the incident and problem management process and establish improvement activities
  • Define KPI’s along with the Incident Manager to track throughput and processing time
  • Define KPI’s along with the Incident Manager to track the number of messages daily / weekly / monthly / quarterly etc.
  • Define KPI’s along with the Incident Manager to track average resolution time, by category, and severity
  • Ensure escalation process is in place
  • Ensure compliance to the SLA’s is incorporated into the process
  • Monitoring adherence to IT processes

Within Security:

  • Periodically review alignment to the organization’s security concepts
  • Support the Technical Operations team to evaluate security notes, and perform risk analysis
  • Ensure SAP security notes are aligned and up to date
  • Define KPI’s along with the PMO and Technical Operations Team to track and audit security note implementation
  • Define KPI’s along with the PMO and Technical Operations Team to track the compliance of security controls

Next let us look at the QM for Business Continuity (BC)

Key areas covered by this role:

  • Business Process and Interface Monitoring
  • Job Management
  • Data Consistency Management
  • Root Cause Analysis
  • System Monitoring and Administration
  • Data Volume Management

 

The QM for BC needs to ensure the continuous operation of the business

The QM for BC needs to maintain the availability of IT service while supporting the business at a justifiable cost

 

Key Tasks:

  • Implementation and continuous improvement of an Operations Control Center (OCC) for business process and application operations
  • To include (but not limited to);
    • Solution Monitoring
    • End-to-End root cause analysis
    • Developing and implementing strategies for managing data volume and growth

Key Benefits:

  • Automation –
    • Replace manual procedures, moving towards more proactive approach for support (IT knows before the business when something potentially goes wrong!)
  • Process Quality:
    • Defined KPI’s to show value, and help identify areas for improvement
  • Minimal planned and unplanned downtime, resulting in less IT costs for emergency handling and reducing business losses
  • Improvement of IT efficiency and effectiveness through flexible and integrated IT process quality and automated solutions

The QM for Business Continuity interacts mostly with the Quality Manager for Integration Validation

  • Receiving updated solution documentation
  • Updates / changes to business process criteria and KPI’s
  • Updates to business process monitoring and alerting procedures
  • Enablement of root cause analysis utilizing SAP Solution Manager

The QM for Business Continuity also interacts with the Quality Manager for Business Process Improvement

  • Providing incident information and user feedback
  • Providing feedback for solution optimization

The QM for Business Continuity also works with the IT Operations, OCC and Infrastructure teams to set up, run and improve the business process and application operations.

Next let us look at the QM for Integration Validation (IV)

Key areas covered by this role:

  • Operations Handbooks
  • Project validation and Quality Gate Management
  • Transport Management
  • Technical risk mitigation
  • Operation design and validation
  • Validation for deployment

Key Tasks:

  • Perform periodical technical risk assessments and risk mitigation
  • Perform quality checks at project milestones
  • Ensure that SAP-defined solution, product and operation standards are implemented, documented and enforced
  • Support the deployment of new solutions by ensuring that all required experts are available in the control centers
  • Review, validate and optimize the end-to-end process standards for integration validation
  • Establish KPI’s to track the number of project validations executed, including the status of deviations identified (including scope creep)
  • Establish KPI’s to track updates and changes to the Operations Handbooks
  • Ensure Operations Handbook reviews take place on a regular basis

Key Tasks for Risk Mitigation:

  • Establish KPI’s:
    • Efficiency of risk mitigation
    • Trend of incidents due to unidentified technical risks
    • Cost reductions due to less outages
    • Risk reviews and lessons learned

Key Benefits:

  • Minimized planned and unplanned downtime
  • Timelines are met
  • Go-live risks are understood and under control
  • High degree of process automation in IT

 

The QM for Integration Validation interacts with all Quality Managers, and also the Business and IT Operations teams

Risk Management:

  • Ensures understanding and alignment on technical risk management with the Technical Architect
  • Working closely with the Quality Manager BPI to ensure one single Risk Management approach
  • Monitor defined risk plans for technical risks, working with CCOE and PMO
  • Defining KPI’s with Quality Manager for BPI to track deployment of risk mitigation plans, and effectiveness and identifying improvement action plans

Transport Management:

  • Manage transports utilizing SAP Solution Manager tools
  • Create, Release and Import Transport Requests
  • Manage and control transport activities throughout the phases of the projects
  • Monitoring of transports between different systems (QA, Production)

As part of the journey towards gaining the Advanced Certification for CCOE, SAP carries out a 3 day Quality Management workshop, which includes a certification assessment of all participants – to find out more visit our website:   Customer Center of Expertise | SAP Support Portal

You can also email us at COE.program@sap.com

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1 Comment

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  1. Faisal Iqbal

    Good explanation; your blog essentially serves as a guide for customers – who have already stabilized their production solution landscape and are looking forward to enhance capabilities of their Center of Excellence, in visualizing their future state upon incorporation of Quality Management function within their SAP Support.

    Having had similar role at an airlines’ ERP CoE, I could clearly see the value of having such function as part of their organizational structure. I think the experience I (and many others at the forum) had, if added to your blog, could provide some insights to customers seeking better ROI through solution orchestration.

    Out of my total experience at the referred CoE, as I’ve stated at The journey which ended recently! Over 6 years of career with a SAP Customer, 2 years were at a role to support BPI, POI and IV – the Quality Management functions, BC being part of Data Center of IT Division of the organization. Since the Quality Management approach was adopted after ‘maturity’ of processes, the value (of having such function) was clearly visible i.e. moving from mere Cost Center to a Profit Center organization.

    At end of my blog SAP Center of Excellence, between “Value Generation” and “Process Excellence”, I’ve referred yours to ensure audience don’t miss the great explanation you’ve initiated. Great work and keep it up. Looking forward for your future entries.

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