industry leading SAP S/4HANA Cutover Lead/Manager
I'm Ravi Dora, SAP Cutover Manager & Much more....
Accomplished Independent Contractor – SAP Cutover Manager, SAP Data Lead, Finance Transformation Lead, SAP FICO Team Lead.
Over 15 years of experience in Technical Project Planning & Management, Agile Project Delivery, Business Requirement Analysis, Gap Analysis, Data Ingestion, Design, Development, Testing, Maintenance, Project Scoping and Project Delivery.
Cutover Planning, Data Migration, Finance Transformation, SAP FICO, experienced in SAP Upgrades.
Technology Integration, Client/Stakeholder Management, Communication and Negotiation Skills.
On Shore/Offshore Team Leadership, IT Projects Technical/Solutions Consultancy.
Why do you need an SAP S/4HANA
For an SAP project go-live to be successful it’s essential that the business and project teams are all on the same page. They need to be ready from the very start of the operation.
Most large scale ERP projects have multiple stakeholders with differing levels of responsibility. Good communication and strong leadership is essential as planning a cutover is a difficult and challenging task for project managers, especially when dealing with locality and placement issues.
To prevent delays and increased expenditure, competent management is required during cutover planning and execution to ensure decisions are implemented correctly and potential issues are addressed.
What Is Cutover?
a series of steps needing to be planned, executed and monitored for the transition to the project go-live.
- The migration of data (master & transactional)
- The ramp down and ramp up of processes
- First/Last days of system use/access
- First/Last use of infrastructure & applications
- Plans and runbooks
- Dry runs, mocks, walk-throughs
- Key communication with internal & external parties
- Definition of mitigation activities that can reduce business risk
& Large data Lead project specialist
I have over 15 years SAP Technical Project Planning & Management experience. Working in London, Europe and the rest of the world, with exceptional skills in evaluating functional and IT solutions to troubleshoot business problems.
Adept in managing enterprise-wide, technical transformation projects, personnel and stakeholder relationships.
Expertise in SAP software packages (4.6C, 4.7, ECC 5.0, ECC 6.0, SAP S/4 HANA) to implement global projects.
Remarkable experience in ASAP methodology and data migration tools, with a proven successful implementation of 5 full life cycles on large-scale SAP Data Migration programmes.
Successfully headed ‘On-site project implementation’ worldwide including locations such as the UK, USA, Europe, Brazil, Qatar, South Korea, China, Philippines and Turkey.
I have extensively contributed to achieving SAP cutover for 36 companies owned by British American Tobacco (BAT). Accredited for conceptualising and delivering SAP Agency Business Module for Post Office UK Ltd. Successfully implemented over 10 end to end full life cycle projects.
My unparalleled SAP knowledge and experience will give you peace of mind that the cutover will be completed on time and precisely.
What Is Cutover Planning?
Like wider programme planning, Cutover plans have to be presented at a number of different levels in order for a range of different users to be able to track progress, identify issues, and understand the overall approach.
Furthermore, it is essential to take a cross-functional approach to cutover. Using Agile methodology enables a project to be broken up into several phases. This ensures the project is delivered more efficiently whilst using less resources.
Programme-wide Integrated Cutover Plan
- Creates and maintains an integrated view of critical milestone points in the cutover plan
- Serves as a basis to ensure that all key dates and milestones are communicated to relevant stakeholders
- Users: Deployment Leads & teams, Steering Committee, Programme Management Office, Functional Leads
- Owner: Country / Cluster Deployment Leads
- Overall view of the key milestones and activities within Cutover timeline
- Contains any function-specific items or activities relating to cutover
- Users: Many teams, but especially the Country / Cluster Deployment lead
- Owner: Country / Cluster Deployment Leads
*Click to enlarge
- As well as providing a high level cutover plan and a detailed cutover plan, there must be a detailed cutover Runbook for each country.
- The Runbook ideally should be a single coherent step by step, ordered (minute by minute if necessary) set of tasks coordinated across all stakeholders, which takes us on the full journey from starting cutover to completing it.
- Each step will typically set out a clear task, a note of any necessary pre-requisites, a responsible person and their contact details (often a secondary responsible person as well), acceptance criteria, and where appropriate a test, which must be evaluated to confirm the success of the task.
- If it is not possible to achieve a single coherent Runbook across all stakeholders, each stakeholder must deliver and operate their own Runbook, agreeing key checkpoints at which time all of the Runbooks will join up and coordinate.
- This might be when there are key dependencies to be met across Runbooks or when mini go/no-go decisions would be advantageous in order to retain effective control of cutover.
- The Runbooks may be operated in time blocks to allow different stakeholders to come on line at an appropriate time to fulfil their allocated tasks – as opposed to having to be available for the entire cutover period. However, provision should be made to allow timelines to be brought forward in the event that cutover proceeds more quickly than expected.
- The step by step, minute by minute nature of the Runbook also allows for them to be subject to simulations / dry runs in advance of cutover. This helps to identify any missing tasks, dependencies and misalignment of timings. Ideally these exercises should include interaction with actual pre-production or test systems, but book exercises can also be worthwhile.
Mission Control / Command Centre / War-Room
- A global Cutover War Room will operate across cutover monitoring and supporting cutover in each of their regions and associated Countries.
- As a minimum, each region must operate at least one region War Room, but may also choose to operate in country War Rooms where it feels that this offers improved agility, responsiveness and control.
- A Cutover War-Room is a single physical and/or virtual location at which key stakeholders come together to run the runbook for each country, deal with any issues that arise and escalate (where necessary) to the Global War Room for support.
- As well as running the runbook, the Cutover War-Room will facilitate communications between all relevant stakeholders / parties in the lead up to a country go-live; monitor, listen and respond to inquiries; and synthesize opinions to determine the best course of action during any cutover.
- It is the place that brings people together in a single location to collaborate and solve problems. During the crucial stages of cutover, the War-Room should allow the free flow of information between all relevant stakeholders.
- The Cutover War-room needs to simplify the transition by being responsive to the region and country needs, with collective knowledge from all the relevant participants involved in the cutover activities. The War-Room needs to facilitate the capture of information and help to process the decisions by building a shared understanding.
- It should allow the prompt routing of relevant incoming issues to the correct escalation points and document what’s learned in one country for reusing in future cutovers and for providing feedback to the wider company teams.
- The War Room should hold a complete contact list for primary and secondary actors with main and backup contact numbers.
- War Room operations should be subject to dry run before the cutover weekend and may in fact operate for one or two weeks prior to actual cutover in order to keep track of early cutover tasks.