Many companies that implement SAP SuccessFactors do so with the goal of digitizing or transforming their HR function. The results of the transformation are often measured by the successful adoption of SAP SuccessFactors solutions across the business. Such an implementation calls for a multi-faceted project that is comprised of teams of resources from the vendor (SAP), the consulting partner (system integrator) and the client itself. To add complexity, these teams are often globally and geographically dispersed and will typically face turnover and staffing changes as the project progresses.
SAP’s recommended best practice is to use the Activate methodology for project management and to follow a timeline with measurable milestones and goals for achieving the estimated go-live date of the system within the agreed scope.
However, with such a disparate and varied group of people located in different cities, across different time zones and in different roles, how can such a project be efficiently and successfully managed while also achieving the overall strategic objective of HR transformation? Is email really the most engaging approach? Does using a tool such as Microsoft SharePoint as a document repository allow for interaction and collaboration amongst project members? How can implementing the solution also prepare organizations for the significant change brought by a new cloud solution?
Luckily, SAP provides an excellent solution to engage, communicate, and propel a system implementation into a dynamic and collaborative experience. It is called SAP Jam, and in this blog, I will share three examples of how and why you should leverage SAP Jam for your SuccessFactors projects.
1. Shared project space for all implementation activities
SAP Jam, unlike other enterprise collaboration tools that isolate functionality around wikis, blogs or social feeds, incorporates these elements and also makes it possible to structure them on an intranet-like page. With this capability, you can create a project space that allows you to centralize all of your project management activities. Your project space looks like a web page but is designed to be collaborative and interactive and can be used by all team members, creating an environment of engagement and ongoing connectivity. On the home page it’s possible to create tabs leading to different sections of information including:
- An introduction of the project team
- News and updates
- Tracking of meetings and discussions
- Management of risks and issues, and
- Structuring and storing project documents
Benefits:The advantages of using SAP Jam instead of email exchange or secured drive folders is clear: Jam provides a virtual team room or space, increased visibility across the project team, improved efficiency in overall communication of project planning and activities, and information that is searchable and accessible in a modern and digital platform.
2. Scheduled Tasks
Project activities can be set up as tasks in SAP Jam. Tasks features include the ability to make assignments to multiple people, the ability to pair due dates with notification reminders, a method of clearly prioritizing tasks, the ability to easily attach documents, and a simple, central way for followers to keep other parties informed of the progress of a task.
Once a project member is assigned a task, they will receive notification both in Jam as well as via email to which they can respond. They will also receive reminders on indicated frequency until completion of the task.
Benefits:Given the dynamics of completing a project with team members in different locations and on different schedules, the benefit of tasks is evident. They allow for task progression and updates asynchronously, accountability of task completion, and visibility into progress of activities to project sponsors.
3. Social and interactive document sharing
If you are following the SAP Activate methodology, a significant amount of documentation will be used to control project rollout, achieve timelines and ensure quality gate reviews. Although the project manager might also be the owner of the initial documents in use, it is often the case that different project members need to access the documents, view and read them, or even edit them. With SAP Jam, not only is there dynamic versioning but also interactive social commentary that allows sharing feedback or edits for the document directly in Jam.
Benefits: Instead of sending attachments, zip files or storing files in static shared drive, documents are made accessible to all current or potential/future project members. Also, versioning of documents is streamlined to allow an author to revert to any previous version and social documents allow project members to share feedback directly in Jam without editing any version.
There are many other features of SAP Jam that make it the obvious choice as the collaboration platform for your SAP SuccessFactors implementation. These include: videos (create and/or share), events, polls, pro-con tables, agendas, timelines, and much more.
An SAPSuccessFactors implementation should help you transform or digitize your HR function. I believe that by using SAP Jam, the approach to project deployment can be just as transformative and digital as the project itself!
If you have thoughts or questions about SAP Jam, I would love to hear them. Contact me here: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ana Lucia Soler Villanueva is a Project Manager and enterprise social collaboration expert at iXerv. She is passionate about using talent management and collaboration solutions to increase employee engagement.