There’s a lot that goes into an EPM environment. If you were there when it was first installed, you may have known the IT team or the consultants who designed and implemented the plan. It’s a big ask to understand the needs of the software before a single application is even written. Some can do it well – but certainly not everybody does. Once the hardware is in place, the structure is laid down, the applications are built and testing has been completed, it’s ready to take on… well, passengers right?
This incredibly complex system has now been rolled out and is ready to start getting people where they need to go. The people know what to do – they’ve been trained to take their seats and “relax” while this machinery does the heavy lifting for them. But just like a jumbo jet pilot, you should be setting up a system of pre-flight checks to make sure that things are running well. And while things aren’t always perfect, your safety record can be amazing when you take the time to check – in a meaningful and methodical way – that your system is ready to go after the last time you asked it to work hard.
Datavail calls these “pre-flight checks” because they are just that. These are the things that you should be checking to ensure your user community has a great experience with you. This is your brand. This is your reputation on the line. When things go bad, they can go really bad; so do everything you can to not let that happen.
There are 4 distinct types of pre-flight checks that you can complete:
- Is your application doing WHAT it’s supposed to do?
- Have there been any unauthorized changes made?
- Have you backed up critical objects and structure?
- Are the servers, networks, and hardware ready to work hard?
- Do you have enough resources to do what is needed on the system?
- What happened last period and can you forecast for this period?
- Have you tested the performance of your connections?
- Will your users experience longer response times due to changes in the environment?
- Can your users access the things they need to get to?
- Are your forms, reports, and grids all being accessed in a timely manner?
- Has an EPM, OS, Database or other patch been applied?
- If so, what has it done to your apps?
- Has the overall performance of the system been impacted?
- Has any static information or settings changed due to the patching?
If you take the time to explore these questions and create your own pre-flight check, you’ll have a repeatable process and a set of checkboxes that will help. Of course, with the help of software you can have all these things happen with very little effort. But in the coming weeks, I’m going to go into some detail on each of these to help you understand what is needed for each type of pre-flight check. You don’t have to wait for them – simply asking these questions and taking some action to ensure that they are all set is a step in the right direction for any EPM admin. Stay tuned for more…
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