Principle 8: Exploit standard functionality and delivery best practices
Software configuration is often very powerful, versatile, and far reaching. Through configuration, or the use of solution templates, seemingly unique business requirements can be fulfilled, making major software modifications unnecessary. The result is the faster delivery of a more sustainable solution at lower risk and at lower total cost of ownership. To put this into practice, all parties must be aware of what the standard software offers and its suitability for facilitating process alignment. They must also be committed to leveraging standard software and must raise a flag when it is not used when it could be. Deviations from standard processes must trigger alerts and be justified based on business requirements with C-level approval.
An objective third party should carry out quality assurance at key project milestones to make sure best practices are being followed. This helps prevent the development of unnecessary custom code or workarounds and getting caught in “scope creep.”
We loved the way Umeme Limited explained this principle to the judges in the 2019 SAP Africa Quality Awards. At the project kick-off meeting, the team was given vanilla ice cream to highlight one of their key objectives which were to stay “Vanilla SAP”. In other words, by exploiting SAP standard functionality Umeme Limited managed to take home Gold in the Fast Delivery Category.
Read more about their why their project was so successful here: