Friday, January 13, 2012

Top 7 project-killing "Best Practices" - Part 2

This is the follow up to the post I've cooked up for you over the holidays. Here're another two oh... way too common, embarrassing situations a UCM project may end up in... and how to prevent them:

The Snowball

This is what happens when you ignore the rule above.

Picture yourself having a nicely configured system with clean data. Every document has correct meta values. Now you begin asking for a field that doesn't make sense.

Your contributors will begin putting garbage there... And they'll be putting garbage in other fields as well! How?

Once you done it in one filed - you just keep on typing "asdf" all the way down the form...

The system will soon become polluted. And you might end up losing the meta values for your entire repository. Why?

You won’t know which records have the real values - and which just garbage. Soon enough you won’t be able to trust the data anymore!

Keep an eye on what content is getting entered. And always keep communicating with your business users. Know this single, most expensive type of ECM activity - manual Cleansing and Matching. Unless you have an army of data analysts looking for stuff to do - I don't recommend you letting your project get to this point, so you must try really hard to prevent it.

Gold Plating

This one is a UCM-specific twist on every developer’s all times favourite. All too often I see technical teams continuing to toy with a task or project way past the point when its ripe and ready for the business to start using it.

The key here is to have a live working system in the hands of your business people - as soon as you possibly can.

And then keep improving it. All you need to do is make small incremental changes. Like adding different types of documents, new modules, new workflows etc.

Keep listening to feedback. If business is happy - you did great. If not - all you have to undo is just a few more of these small changes!

And don’t try to bite more then you can chew and don’t sit on an egg that has already hutched! You build 80% of value in the first 20% of the time you're working on the project and that's a really good time to have a business take a look and make a call if they'd like to start using it.

Sounds good?

Ok, gotta go...  back to client's work!

Stay tuned for more.

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