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Sure Step is a structured development methodology from Microsoft, which has evolved through real life experience from partners such as C2. It is an established methodology for implementing Dynamics CRM and it aims to reduce deployment time, cost, risk, and to accelerate client return on investment.
This is achieved through:
Focusing on client needs from the very first conversation
Using established, processes, assets, tools, and checklists that are specific to Dynamics CRM
Ensuring effective project communication, collaboration, and understanding of:
-scope, requirements, roles, responsibilities, milestones, and goals
Resolution of project challenges, and finding solutions from lessons learnt
Targeting user adoption and appreciation of change management issues
Predictability and management of deployment
Dynamics Sure Step is a repeatable and scalable methodology that covers all phases of a project, from the Sales phase (Diagnostic) right through to Operational use. There are six phases to Sure Step – Diagnostic, Analysis, Design, Development, Deployment and Operation.
Diagnostic: this phase captures scope and commences at the earliest possible stage, usually pre-award of a contract
Analysis: once the project is commissioned functional analysis based on the scope of work is followed through to completion
Design: this phase embarks upon a technical design for the solution build, to define:
Entities, forms, processes, workflows, roles & permissions, reports, data migration, and integration touch points.
Development: if design is sufficiently detailed a traditional waterfall process would follow:
- Tollgate reviews involving project team members provide quality and momentum assurance
Deployment: deployment planning prepares for go live, and covers elements such as:
- End User Training, Train the Trainer, Operational Guides
- Change Management Considerations
- System Testing (Processes, Integration, Data Acceptance, etc.)
- Cutover to Production Plan
- Post Production Support Plan
Operation: on release to live the project team would normally provide Post Go Live support and resolve, questions, issues, or skills transfer requirements. Thereafter there would be a:
- Formal Project Closure Complete (includes lessons learnt)
- System Acceptance and Sign Off
As an organisation we have 20 years’ development experience and our Project Managers have used various methodologies to deliver numerous complex Dynamics CRM solutions.
We assessed Microsoft Dynamics Sure Step thoroughly prior to embracing this framework to assure ourselves of its value prior to gaining formal Dynamics Sure Step Accreditation. Dynamics Sure Step is a comprehensive implementation methodology and we found it mirrored many aspects of what we already do.
In our opinion the most useful elements of Dynamics Sure Step are the tools and templates for project management of Dynamics CRM solutions that incorporate both standard and custom feature requirements.
C2 aims for continuous improvement in the quality of our Dynamics CRM projects, to also increase our efficiency, and to improve customer excellence standards and value. In our opinion Dynamics Sure Step “does what is says on the tin” - we have proven that it contributes towards our mission and is reflective of our commitment to ISO 9001 Quality Management Accreditation.