Project Methodology Process Visualization Workbench for SAP Consulting, revolves around knowledge and process visualization for SAP projects and engagements. This is a new process tool set and opens up doors that give you many operational efficiencies and delivers on critical key differentiators for your consulting practice and business!
If you're in Sales:
Link to your prospect database or Excel files to pull out sales leads.
Review your accounts and identify opportunities for new initiatives and growth.
Show prospects new and innovative ways to collaborate on line or show through an in-person presentation.
Acquire research data in a matter of minutes.
Organize the sales team, including pre-sales, to let them know what they need to do.
Prospect to client conversion:Save time.
One spot for everyone; stakeholders, business partners, vendors, integration partners,team leads, project / program managers, consultants, etc.
By using collaboration tools, promotes teamwork, speeds closure on critical issues and deliverables, speed scoping and analysis when key people can't make it to in-person or off site meetings and reduces scheduling conflicts.
If you're a Project Manager:
Everything is in one central knowledge map.
Track everything in one spot.
Make complicated processes, issues or problems simpler when using a process or knowledge map.
Gain team feedback on the spot and always be sure people are meeting project tasks and objectives.
Get everyone to the most recently updated information by maintaining tight version control and distribute the latest via email.
Get greater control over what team members are doing remotely or offshore by using built in collaboration tools.
Look at each of the examples. Beyond the colorful appearance, there are a lot of moving parts! These are the "front ends," or user interfaces.
They're based on "mind maps." The term "mind map" is one that we don't think is accurate when used in the original context. Instead, we prefer the term, "knowledge map," or "process map."
You can trigger a collaboration session from any interface, invite anyone, share maps and associated documentation, get sign off on key deliverables and much more!!
Take a look! Click on the following knowledge and process maps. Many of these are forms and / or templates that are set into other maps or are working components of "Control Central" front end process maps.
SAP Sales Control Central - There's more to these maps than just a pretty picture! Each topic has a lot going on behind it. For example, the prospect qualification topic links to a CRM database. Your sales team has instant access to their prospects. There are links into Outlook and appointments can be set up with prospects as well. However, this is not what Project Methodology Process Visualization Workbench is about. Project Methodology Process Visualization Workbench is about a total process, developing a full procedure and conveying meaningful information that can used, adapted, arranged and communicated from a single vantage point. Sure, it uses all the tools you're familiar with like PowerPoint, Word, Excel, etc., but those tools only take you up to a certain point and slowly at that!
Here's an example. How many projects have you started without a Statement of Work (SOW)? You know why it's done, and you may not agree with it's practice, but it gets your foot inside the prospect environment. You gain enough of a foothold that you can assign consultants and start billing. Yes... it's the revenue stream! You can't put your people in their for free and you certainly don't want to support a bench!
However, there is that looming, nagging feeling that something could go wrong. After all, you don't have a signed contract with the prospect, thus the ball is in the prospect's court... not yours! In other words, you're not really in control. Having an agreement in place protects you and the client! On the process map below, the right side of the map won't light up until the SOW has been signed.
The approach Project Methodology Process Visualization Workbench uses is to employ collaboration tools to bring anyone involved with the project, especially the stakeholders and client partner executives together, at the right times, to bring any outstanding issues to closure before they become issues! The goal is to get agreement and sign off on any and all deliverables. Sometimes a little nudging and cornering can't hurt. Providing a way to communicate, with all documentation and people at hand, no matter where they are located on the planet, can be very, very healthy.
Once the SOW has been signed, the project manager's control center will light up. In this example, it's an SAP project, so the PM has a choice; use SAP's waterfall methodology, or if the PM is experienced, he or she can build their own tool box. Also, every single document that's produced before and during the project can be accessed right from here! As the infomercials say, "Wait, there's more!"
The way that information is stored and retrieved is also a little unique as well. If you want to, you can still access any document from the plain ol' standard file hierarchy that has served us so well for so many years. We provide the ability to find associations, relationships and occurrences in the data inside any of the documents, throughout the entire lifecycle of not only this project, but every project you have stored and archived!
We can spend the next week or so showing the features and functions, but we want to show you the business benefits. That's where the rubber meets the road!! We want to show the business value that Project Methodology Process Visualization Workbench delivers and this is from only one process map!!
The map illustrated below, is the Sales Cycle Control Central process map. This is where the adventure typically begins... on the sales side. Many consultancies have customer relationship management (CRM) systems. So, beginning with the first topic, "1. Prospect Qualification," the sales representative can link to their respective database in their CRM system and perform an extract on opportunities and contacts based on the criteria that's designed into the query. Database queries can be based on ODBC connection to DB2, Oracle or SQL Server. If you use Excel, you can extract from there, too!
The sales rep can use one of these maps for each prospect. Once a promising prospect has been identified, the rep will move to the next topic, "2A. SAP Solutions & Products." Another map will open, and from that map, the sales rep can zero in on specific SAP product knowledge that he / she may wish to include in a sales call. Key information can be immediately extracted (on the spot) and a PowerPoint or other presentation can be prepared right then and there! All key points have been automatically summarized, and with a click, it can added as bulleted points to the presentation. The presentation can be completed very, very quickly and highly customized for a specific target market segment or prospect. This can save the sales person a lot of time! This is only the tip of the iceberg though.
If more research is needed, in any subject area, the next topic, "2B. Research Tools," has features to dive deeper into information the sales rep would like to highlight to the prospect, such as, industry trends, market data, available research of interest, etc. As with any information gleaned during research, point and click to apply to PowerPoint presentations, Word documents, attach and send as email, save as an Adobe PDF or Adobe Flash PDF, a web enable presentation, etc. All the prospect has to do is open the presentation in a browser. All the topics will be shown in map form along with a table of contents, hyperlinks, document links, etc. Generating collateral is a breeze, too. Click 'n' send, click 'n' print, etc., can be instantly provided!
Industry solution maps can be optionally included and these are inside the topic, "2C. Industry Solution Maps & Associated Information." Typically, these knowledge maps are extremely detailed and illustrate many of the "best business practices" SAP includes in their industry vertical offerings! We do our very best to provide as much detail as possible and to keep them as up-to-date as possible as well.
The other topics, ranging from business case development, scope and analysis, feasibility studies, statement of work preparation and the project charter, can all be produced on the spot, as sales and pre-sales gather the information they need during the sales cycle.
As described above, once a clear understanding of the project objectives have been agreed upon, scope and analysis has covered all pertinent areas, the statement of work has been signed and project manager and project team leads and other resources identified and assigned to the project, the right side of the map will light up. This feature is an option and the all topics in the map can be "on" if desired.
Sales Cycle Control Central Knowledge & Process Map
Scenario BP Workshop with Interface
Scenario BP Workshop Detailed View
As with many template and form based maps (user interfaces), start at 1:00 and proceed clockwise. If there are questions, or uncertainties in the content, press the connect button, invite whomever you need anywhere on the planet and you can hash things out right then and there!
The map will be shared and you give edit permissions to whoever you want. The map, content, context... you name it... can be changed instantly! For example:
Scope & Analysis Overall View
Scope & Analysis part 1
Scope and Analysis part 2
Why is this an advantage? All supportive documentation, including other maps that were used to support the scoping effort, are in this map. You don't have to go looking for anything... it's already there, and... it's all within a click or two, even during your collaboration session. If there's a feature you'd like to use that's not there, it's no problem... we will show you how to customize it and add or remove any features or functions you want! Most additions can be applied very quickly.
The other major reason it's important is because if the prospect / stakeholder is on the call, and they're reviewing it with you, you can ask directly for approval and sign off right on the spot! To many consulting firms, sign off on critical documents are crucial, not only toward moving to the next step in the sales cycle, but legally as well, especially down the road. This protects you and the future client!
Please keep in mind, this is only a very small sampling of knowledge and process maps, and... most of these are on the front end. There is so much more to see!!