At some point all software will be upgraded to take advantage of new features, new technology, and/or to keep in synchronization with other software which has been upgraded. I’ve assisted a number of companies with BPC software upgrades. Some have been very quick and efficient while others were not as efficient as they could have been.
Prior to an upgrade we take an inventory of what will be upgraded. In defining this inventory we are creating the scope of work to perform. When this inventory is larger than what is used, or worse, unknown, the scope of work is incorrect. As a result, more is migrated than should be. Or worse, items can be missed and not realized until the user acceptance testing phase. Both scenarios are costly to the upgrade timeline and budget.
I liken this to an analogy of my own personal experience: ‘moving’....
I recently moved after getting married and have enjoyed the pleasure of joining households. During our lives we had each acquired a significant amount of stuff. Some of it needed and used, but most were things that we kept just because there was a place to put it. After joining households it was very obvious we had too much stuff as evidenced by rooms full of boxes that were not being utilized.
To correct the issue we went through a painful process of un-packing and re-boxing what we didn’t need. Essentially moving back out what we had just moved in. (This is similar to upgrading items that are not required or needed).
The things we gave away were things we should have given away a long time ago. If only we had a process to review excess inventory! And only after it was too late were the benefits of on-going household clutter reduction clear. To be fair I’m sure my wife already knew and I was just learning.
Now in our household we have an on-going process of moving a few items into the ‘to-go’ pile monthly and then quarterly taking these to Goodwill. This new on-going process will help us be ‘clutter free’ and make us more efficient in the next move and at the same time optimizing the space we have. I’ll be looking forward to the next move versus dreading it!
If you do not have a system to identify in-use processes and to eliminate processes that are not used, I encourage you to begin. Start with what you know and continue to build an inventory until the list is complete. Meet regularly with a cross-functional team to review processes. Remove, delete or archive processes that are not used. Identify redundant or unnecessary steps. Remove those that are not added value or that are no longer used. The benefits of eliminating and reducing steps will be realized in both the day to day operations, as well as having an application that is ready for the next upgrade.