HCM Technology Terminology: All About Implementation

July 11, 2018

Written by Samantha Colby

Your CHRO announces that a new system has been selected and that you are part of the core team working on the implementation. You already know from part one of this series that implementation is the process of setting up a newly purchased software system so that the system is live and the customer can use the system. Here are some of the terms you’re likely to hear throughout the duration of this implementation project.

  • Kickoff – This is the beginning phase of an implementation project that is focused on planning for the project, including establishing a common understanding of the key project objectives, and project governance. Activities that typically take place during this phase include a kickoff meeting, led by your project manager, creation of a project charter and project timeline, team introductions, and defining roles and responsibilities.
  • Discovery / Requirements Gathering – This phase is where an implementer (usually a consultant, and sometimes a software vendor’s services team) works with the client to identify current and future HR business processes. The consultant takes those business requirements and translates those into configuration settings, so that the new system can be set up and performs as the client expected, and accomplish the processes the client expected.
  • Configuration – A phase during software implementation where the new system is being set up and changed to match the client company’s requirements defined in the discovery / requirements gathering stage.
  • User Acceptance Testing – A phase during software implementation where the system owner can utilize their new system in a demo-type environment to verify that the system is working as it should, given the requirements set forth by the client.
  • Go-Live – The point during a software implementation where the new system is launched and made public to the users. This go-live date is usually defined during the project kickoff meeting and is the end goal of the project.
  • Support/Hypercare – This refers to the 30-day period of time immediately after go-live. Most implementation partners will provide some sort of limited support to clients to answer questions and troubleshoot issues that might arise during this period.

Now you’re well prepared for what to expect in your upcoming implementation project. Stay tuned for the next part in this series which will be focused on people and project management.

About Samantha Colby

Samantha Colby

Samantha Colby is the Marketing Director at HRchitect, the leader in HCM systems strategic consulting. Samantha has several years of experience in the payroll and benefits administration space. Samantha has B2B and consumer marketing experience in several industries including consulting, higher education, and sports and entertainment. When not preparing for upcoming trade shows or executing marketing campaigns, Samantha can be found following Boston-based sports teams or reading a  book from the local library.