Practice. Practice. Practice.
Practice makes perfection! I heard those words every day from my mother as a child. She stressed that improvement only comes with practice whether it’s basketball (not Allen Iverson’s “practice”), piano, multiplication tables, or reading.
In my personal life as an adult and in my professional life, those words of practice still apply and have served me and many others well. Take for example, a large-scale system implementation (e.g., billing system, e-commerce system, ERPs, etc.). The final deployment and go-live are challenging steps and rarely go perfectly. These steps are especially critical if the final deployment and go-live impact business operations with a system outage or other operational disruption.
So what are some tips for go-live success?
Practice! Do as many practice deployments and go-lives as possible. Do 50 of them if you have the time and resources.
To effectively practice deployments and go-lives:
- Run them as if they were the final, real exercise.
- Use the planned resources, timeline, processes, and approach.
- Take note of what went well and what needs improvement.
For the next practice run, ensure that the areas of improvement are addressed and the areas that went well continue to go well. By following these suggestions, each practice session will go better and better with the final deployment and go-live going as flawless as possible.
I have been fortunate to work with clients that agreed with our suggestion of practice deployments and Go-Lives. With these practice events, we have seen significant improvement in the success of final deployments and go-lives.
So, remember, practice, practice, practice!