Tag Archives: Project management

Microsoft releases Sure Step 2012

imageA couple of days ago, at a Sure Step 2010 training at Sundsgården, Helsingborg, Sweden, while students were preparing to take the exam, one of the students asks me where she can download Sure Step 2010. I give her the link, but she tells me: “No, that’s Sure Step 2012, I’d like to download 2010”.

That came as a surprise. “No way” – I say – “It hasn’t yet been released.”

Or has it?

And then I check, and almost can’t believe it – it’s really there. I completely missed the tweets, the Facebook announcement, the LinkedIn discussions. It seems that I’m not particularly social nowadays. A quick check of Twitter shows me that there wasn’t too much buzz around it, and most of the blogosphere simply redelivers the same content, which either comes from the official announcement (which I also missed Smile) or from whoever blogged first.

Instead of giving a simple “excited” redelivery of the announcement, here’s my take on Sure Step 2012, what’s new, what’s not new (both sadly and thankfully).

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Sure Step in action: business process change

Service Providers (or colloquially partners) often refrain from undertaking organization or process changes during implementation projects of Microsoft Dynamics solutions. And it comes as no surprise: there are many risks related to it, and customizations are taken as a more traditional approach.

Customizations are easy to predict, they do come at risk, but at least the risks are known and often easily managed entirely within service provider’s organization and reach, while organizational change is unpredictable, and often exceeds consultants’ knowledge, experience and expertise.

However, with or without intention or consent, organizational change will always happen. No solution has ever been 100% fit, and since the customer must do their business with the solution, the remainder from fit to 100% will always and without exception be satisfied with an unmanaged, unintentional, but evolutionary process change.

Instead of leaving it all to chance, Sure Step offers much better ways.

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My new career path – independent consultant

It’s official now, and it’s time I announce it here: after two years at Microsoft I’ve decided to take the helm of my career and venture into the realm of independent consulting. Two days into it, and all I can say about it is: what have I been waiting for this long?

While at Microsoft, I had a chance to work on some very exciting projects, I was sitting at the source of information, and the thrill of being able to know about all the news and developments before anyone else is priceless.

But the thrill of being able to work on my own, to pick my own projects, to take on completely new challenges, was even more priceless.

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Do you need contingency reserve?

If projects were completely predictable, there would be no need for risk management. Everything could be planned and executed according to plan. However, we know better. Unexpected things happen, disrupt the original plans and cause time and cost overruns. In IT projects, these overruns are far too common to be ignored.

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What’s a project plan?

Project plan. A fancy term we all like to use. But believe it or not, most of us don’t even know what a project plan really is.

I don’t know why, how and when it came to be that in IT we started using the term project plan, but whatever the origin, the term we use is somewhat incorrect, and when attached to what we often attach it to, it’s downright wrong.

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