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Author's profile photo Jan Musil

Playbook for Remote Fit-to-standard Workshops

Over the past few weeks I had opportunity to work with SAP project teams and account teams supporting our customers to transition their project delivery from on-site (or mixed on/off-site) to full off-site delivery in matter of days. We have learned a lot and started to publish materials in SAP Activate that help our customers and partners benefit from our learnings. The very first asset we are making available immediately is Playbook for remote fit-to-standard workshops.

But let me start from the beginning. When I was approached by our project and account teams with question How SAP Activate helps our customers continue running projects as various countries implemented lockdowns and businesses overnight transitioned to working from home, I was confident that the guidance, governance, tools and accelerators support off-site project delivery. But there were two areas where I wasn’t completely sure if our guidance is strong enough for off-site or mixed execution. First area is the remote execution of fit-to-standard workshops in Explore phase that are traditionally run in on-site workshops with co-located participants; the second is performing cutover to production in Deploy phase during which most teams co-locate for execution of dress rehearsal as well as for productive cutover.

We started to work with my team and experienced consultants from SAP Services organization to formalize guidance for planning and execution of fit-to-standard workshops remotely in a playbook. The playbook complements the detailed guide for fit-to-standard we have in SAP Activate for many years and provides additional guidance for teams to prepare their environment for the workshops, sample agenda and explanation on how to use collaboration tools during the time when participants are attending the workshops from their homes. I was pleased this week to hear from our team delivering fit-to-standard workshops with customer that the playbook helped prepare and deliver the sessions successfully. Today we are making this playbook available to our customers and partners – you can download it here. Note that this version is designed for SAP S/4HANA Cloud and may need to be adjusted for on-premise projects where the tooling will be different – for example the delta requirements will be captured in SAP Solution Manager instead of the backlog template accelerator. We will be adding this playbook to SAP Activate methodology in SAP Roadmap Viewer in the next weeks, but I didn’t want to hold back this valuable asset that may help other projects stay on track.

The fit-to-standard playbook focuses not only on the functional and technical aspects of the workshop planning and execution, but also addresses topics of setting the right frame for running the workshops including how to keep the participants engaged, how to make the workshops collaborative by using tools and techniques to drive efficient execution. The playbook contains pulse checklists to help participants prepare for the workshop, sample agenda and in the execution actions the focus is set on topics of communication, attention, engagement and collaboration. Below is image of the entire playbook document.

During the work on the fit-to-standard playbook I learned about our consulting team’s successful execution of production cutover and post go-live activities with our customers. We held first calls to debrief on the lessons from these activities and we are currently putting together another playbook that details out recommendation for planning and executing cutover activities as well as guidance for the activities post go-live to ensure business adoption of the solution. We plan to release this asset soon in SAP Activate as well.

In addition to the purpose-built playbooks, our project delivery experts worked on a broader document that highlights areas that need additional attention during off-site project delivery with SAP Activate. We will be making this document available to our customers and partners on the SAP Activate JAM space (if you are not yet member, you can request invite at in the next few days.

Please share your experience from delivering project work off-site or remotely in the comments to this blog post. If you have questions, post them in comments or send them to me and my team in the SAP Activate JAM.

I hope everybody has a healthy weekend and successful work week.

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      Author's profile photo Craig Mortensen
      Craig Mortensen

      Jan - Thanks so much for publishing this.  Definately, if customers have critical projects they need to execute now, the new paradigm will be fit to standard and taking a play out of the cloud playbook.  Given the the work I do in SAP's Solution Delviery Centers, I see us executing and deliverying all kinds of fucntional & tecnical & cutover work remotely for all kinds of projects or even entire projects currently.

      I am probably more aggressive than most people on this topic and what is possible.  I have seen some of the most difficult projects delievered remotely & successfully with the amazing tools, accelerators, model companies, factories & talent that SAP has. This update will only facilitate that.

      Author's profile photo Jan Musil
      Jan Musil
      Blog Post Author

      Thank you, Craig for sharing your viewpoint. Significant part of success is the right governance, the right process, tools and most importantly mindset. Which I would describe as collaborative (we are in this together and we are aiming to accomplish a common goal).

      There are numerous examples of projects continuing to be run and customers going live even in face of current events. My goal with sharing playbook like this one for fit-to-standard is to help customers leverage the lessons learned so everyone can benefit from them.

      Author's profile photo Douglas Cezar Kuchler
      Douglas Cezar Kuchler

      Hello Jan,

      I could not find the playbook-for-remote-fit-to-standard-workshops on the SAP Jam group.

      Can you please confirm if it is already available?


      Thanks a lot!


      Author's profile photo Jan Musil
      Jan Musil
      Blog Post Author

      Hi Douglas,

      you can hit the link in the blog post about 3 lines below the image of Activate phases. The material in Activate JAM will be broader view on key areas people need to pay attention during offsite delivery - specifically PM, OCM, Enablement/Training, Config, Extensibility, Testing, Cutover, Operations and Continuous enhancements. More of a overview level materials and the playbook like the one for fit-to-standard is created for specific purpose.

      Hope this helps. And thanks for your interest.


      Author's profile photo Harish Choudhary
      Harish Choudhary

      Good one Jan. This is very helpful in the hour of need.

      Author's profile photo Benedicta Oletu
      Benedicta Oletu



      Thanks for sharing this, this is an excellent example of a Business continuity in the face of the current challenges of COVID-19.

      i love you point about setting the right frame for the workshop in addition to setting the Functional and Technical requirements, more often than not, this becomes the main pain point to success.

      Author's profile photo Jan Musil
      Jan Musil
      Blog Post Author

      Hi Benedicta,

      I appreciate the feedback. One other element is critical for success of these sessions - the self-enablement of the business users attending these workshops will help things along much faster. If people are not enabled the workshops will be longer as they will combine fit-to-standard work with enablement.


      Best Regards, Jan

      Author's profile photo Sumit Patel
      Sumit Patel

      Hi Jan,

      Very useful information , thanks for sharing this blog.

      Can you please help me with Fit-To-Standard for S4Hana On-Premise.



      Author's profile photo Jan Musil
      Jan Musil
      Blog Post Author

      Hi Sumit,

      thanks. You should find all the information needed to prepare, plan, execute and document results of fit-to-standard in SAP Activate. For SAP S/4HANA, you can find the guidance in this SAP Activate roadmap -

      You will find the guidance and accelerators in the Design and Configure work stream - filters are on the left side when you are navigating in the Roadmap Viewer tool. Make sure to logon with you partner or customer ID to get access to all accelerators and tasks.