This blogpost is based on a presentation we gave at the Summit conference in Orlando in 2022. This list is based on the learning from many years of implementing Navision then NAV now Business Central. Many of us at Ternpoint Solutions have worked on both the client and the partner side of implementations, which has helped generate this guide.
Go Live Preparation
- Compile and make sure your SOPs/quick guides/documentation are ready and in the same place.
- Have a plan in terms of migrating balances, documenting any differences and how they were addressed in preparation for any audit.
- Do at least one mock go live. We do at least one of these with each client. This helps work out the kinks before the cutover weekend, and lets you know how long the cutover could take.
- Let key customers and vendors know you are migrating systems.
- Send out a notice or do a town hall with all users, letting them know what to expect and how to report any issues that come up. Encourage patience.
- Turn off Direct Posting on control accounts after balances are posted and reconciled.
- Security – Limit use of SUPER to a select group of administrators.
- Don’t forget to set posting date restrictions on the general ledger setup and user setup (if appropriate), and inventory periods. See our previous blogpost using the link above for a synopsis on how these dates all come together.
- Use the change log. We have a blog post coming up on best practices when using the change log.
- Be patient, you are still learning.
First Month End
- Reach out to your partner to help with the first bank reconciliation. This is an area that is very hard to test during a mock go-live so often this will be your first time doing one in Business Central.
- Closing out open documents (completes sales orders, purchase orders, production orders, transfer orders etc.) as they are completed will keep the list clean for month end.
- Use a checklist until you get into a rhythm.
- Again, be patient. The first couple of month end closes will take longer but you will get the hang of it and be closing in no time.
Post Go-live Initiatives
- Get through your first month end and let things settle a bit.
- Make a list of open items and prioritize them with your internal team then your partner. Having this helps your partner plan around ongoing projects that they have as well.
- Make sure you test any changes thoroughly in a sandbox database before you put the change into your live environment.
- Document any process changes in your SOPs (quick guides, documentation).
- Be clear on the urgency of the request so that it can be attended to properly.
- Send a screenshot with the error showing the document and company you are in so your partner can log in and replicate the issue. Be clear in the steps to get the error. This eliminates a lot of back and forth.
- Allow your partner time to log in and debug the issue before the user modifies the document/entry etc.
Controlling Support Costs
- Control who can submit tickets and try to resolve tier 1 support internally with your core team.
- If it goes to your partner, learn, and document the fix so you can handle it the next time it comes up (if possible).
- Share updates and process changes regularly with the internal team.
- Keep your database clean of documents. If there is short supply on an order that is not a backorder get rid of the document. A buildup of small amounts across sales and purchase orders will eventually mess with planning.
- Retrain regularly to keep your team current. Organize cross training sessions or bring your partner in if you feel the need.
- Appstore has some great free apps that may help in specific situations. Always keep your partner in the loop in case you have issues with the installation or if they have a better suggestion of an app they have used in the past.
- Keep your SOPs current. These are not just documents for use in training prior to going live. There is nothing an auditor loves more than seeing defined processes and procedures in place that are current. Ideally these are used to onboard new employees as well.
- Stay on top of security and resist the urge to assign SUPER in order to get a user past a permission issue.
- Keep your sandbox company relatively current to allow for recent data for testing and training.
We hope this blog was of use to you. Check back for upcoming topics including: making the most of the change log and how to drive process change during an ERP implementation.
Ternpoint Solutions is a Microsoft Dynamics 365 Partner. We would love to hear from you, reach out using our contact us page