When planning the human resources for the ERP implementation project, implementation and documentation team members are assigned to the project full-time. The evident primary involvement of the first ones defines the involvement of the latter. The thing is that quality documentation phases are mapped to the phases of the ERP software implementation. This continuous sync between these two teams can be hardly overestimated and we will show you why. Below we are listing the ERP implementation project phases where implementation and documentation team interaction is very close.

“Project Preparation” Phase
During this phase documentation creator conducts a thorough analysis of a company’s business processes, as well as designs a workflow process to be used as a core of the documentation. All steps should be at once verified against the script, provided by the implementation team member. This verification ensures that the workflows fit a company’s configuration of the system to meet their specific business requirements.
According to the authors of “Creating ERP Documentation for End Users” one example of such cooperation between implementation and documentation teams in the workflow might be:

– Implementation team member delivers script to documentation team member;
– Documentation team member writes procedure steps and delivers them to implementation team member;
– Implementation team member validates all steps and delivers procedure back to documentation team member with any corrections

The reason for this back and forth cooperation is to make sure that all procedures are validated as a part of a well-designed workflow process.

“Business Blueprint” Phase
While the implementation team together with a consultant works on business requirements, creating “TO BE” implementation documentation, the end-user documentation team can also start working on the blueprint of their output. The sync in these two procedures can streamline the documentation creation process. Besides, the validation of the steps of each individual procedure becomes even more crucial as the project evolves, which in its turn again involves the tight cooperation between the teams.

“Realization” Phase
During this phase the implementation team uses their blueprint to configure the ERP system for a company, whereas the documentation team starts building the online end-user documentation to match the design that was already created. And this is the moment when you can clearly see the benefits of the agreed workflow process from the previous project phase. The scripts from the implementation team are used to create new procedures or modify those that have already been added into templates.

“After Go Live” Phase
Usually, after an ERP system has been already rolled out, the work of both teams isn’t over, as it may logically seem. The implementation team is continuously incorporating further changes or additions to the ERP system. And it definitely requires the follow-up work from the documentation team. New topics are being added in the end-user documentation, making documentation process an ongoing one.

Taking into account the close cooperation of both teams during the majority of phases of the ERP implementation process, one may also consider making at least one documentation team representative a member of the implementation team. Additionally, both teams can also win some time sharing one authoring tool which would allow collaborating on the same files. These decisions may lead to considerable time saving during the project and even better quality of the documentation that end users can rely on after the project is completed.

Since you are reading this article, you might be familiar with the problem of documentation which is so crucial for every stage of ERP project implementation. StepShot– an easy way of creating ERP documentation for end-users!