Be Prepared: The right people for the right job

Profile picture for user Rob Jordan
By: Rob Jordan | 11.6.15

This post was updated in July 2020.

We wrote a post on the 5 things you must bring to your first meeting with a CRM consultant, as there’s a lot to be done before diving into a successful project. One of the biggest potential pitfalls in a deployment is a lack of qualified resources allocated by the client ahead of time. In other words, you have not properly identified the correct stakeholders. This post will help you set yourself up for success.

Stakeholders are broken up into four categories:

  1. Executive Sponsor - an executive that has a vested interest in project success

  2. Champion - a person that will help you internally advocate for project success

  3. Project Lead/Project Manager - the one point of contact who will communicate on a regular basis with the consulting partner and is empowered to make key decisions

  4. Stakeholders - anyone else from your organization who needs to be kept up to date with project status updates and changes — this could include board members, Salesforce admins, or senior management

Of these four, the most essential is the project lead. Without a strong project lead even the best deployment partner will have a challenge working with your organization.

To be fair, many clients are sold on a ‘plug and play’ idea of a solution and may have been led to believe that there won’t need to be support provided on their end. What this idea doesn’t consider and that clients often expect are:

  1. Customization in their solution (to accommodate their business processes)

and/or

  1. Customization in their business process (to accommodate the solution they can afford)

If you have a big budget you can customize to your heart’s content. However, if you have a limited budget you will likely need to adjust your expectations and business practices to find a solution you can afford that meets your needs.

Once clients have assessed these two considerations, you’ll be tasked with finding the correct resources to support your deployment. They will likely require a Business Process Consultant (BPC) or Project Manager (PM). So what do those titles mean and when do you know who is the most appropriate?

Project Manager
We recommend that our clients always have a dedicated resource acting as a PM when doing any solution deployment. The PM will work with your consulting group's PM to ensure:

  • Business process is being translated correctly

  • All requested information is being provided to your deployment partner in a timely manner

  • The project is moving at a proper pace

  • You’re providing the correct resources to the consulting PM

The PM represents a full range of skill sets and will likely fall into one of the following levels: 

Experienced: Experience in project management methodology (Scrum, Agile, Waterfall, etc.) and experience utilizing project management solutions (i.e. Basecamp, TaskRay, MS Project, etc.). Experienced PMs have worked roughly 5 years in the tech sector leading project deployments. They’ll be familiar with Salesforce and possibly hold a Salesforce.com certification.

Standard: Familiarity in project management (Scrum, Agile, Waterfall etc.) and experience utilizing at least one project management solution (i.e. Basecamp, TaskRay, Asana, Trello, MS Project, etc.). Standard PMs have worked at least 1 year in the tech sector leading project deployments. They’ll be familiar with Salesforce and might hold a Salesforce.com certification.

Novice: No experience in project management but may have familiarity with Salesforce and possibly hold a Salesforce certification.

Business Process Consultant
In the event that your project requires minimal customization and you’re comfortable with “out of the box” (i.e. native) Salesforce functionality, you’ll likely only require a PM. However, the project might require a BPC if you need to:

A) Create a new business process

B) Revise existing business process

C) Keep costs low to account for the inability to customize

Business Process Consultants fit into roughly two categories:

Consulting Firm: This type of organization groups together specialists that are familiar with multiple aspects of a particular vertical. For example MetGroup is an organization that has national reach and focuses exclusively on nonprofits. They are connected to a number of “solution experts” like Idealist Consulting who they refer to or call in on a project when it makes sense to do so.

Boutique Shop: Usually a one person shop that has extensive experience in a particular field. Much like a consulting firm, they have connections with solution experts to help them support their clients. 

It’s important to note that Business Process Consultants may be familiar with the feature set of a particular solution, but they’re generally not certified, or don’t have the fundamental skill set to deploy a particular solution.

So after all is said and done, how do you decide what level of engagement you require from each skill set? Below is a chart that we have put together to reference the projected hours of engagement for a successful project deployment. It varies by skill set but can provide a high level reference for planning purposes.

Project commitment by PM:

Size of Project

PM

Admin Cert

Code Cert

Weeks of deployment

Hours per week

0 - 50 hours

     

3 - 6

5-10

50 - 200 hours

Yes

   

6 - 8

5-20

200 - 500 hours

Yes

Yes

 

6 - 12

10-20

500 hours plus

Yes

Yes

Recommended

12 - 36

10-30

 

Project commitment by BPC:

Size of Project

BPC

Admin Cert

Code Cert

Weeks of deployment

Hours per project

0 - 50 hours

Yes

 

No

3 - 6

4

50 - 200 hours

Yes

 

No

6 - 8

20

200 - 500 hours

Yes

Recommended

No

6 - 12

40

500 hours plus

Yes

Recommended

No

12 - 36

60

It is important to note that a PM and Business Process Consultant CAN be one and the same person.

If you have questions about requirements for your project or what you might need to ramp up, check out our whitepaper on getting ready (including budgeting for) for a CRM implementation. 

Go to the CRM Budgeting Whitepaper

 

 

Comments

Submitted by Nitin Gupta on Wed, 12/12/2018 - 05:35

Thanks For sharing this knowledge! Great post

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