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Functional Champions or Team Leads spearhead an individual functional area (such as SFA, Marketing, Customer Service, or a particular line of business). These individuals are stakeholders from the department or line of business most affected by the module (e.g., SFA), have complete domain area knowledge and are dedicated to the project (and generally relieved of traditional day-to-day responsibilities for departmental operations while participating on their area of the project) for the project duration. Functional Champions must be empowered to make decisions for their domain area and their user community. They lead the configuration efforts and decisions during the Conference Room Pilot (CRP) phase with each software module. They further determine the current and anticipated transaction flows within the software module. Their primary objective is to gather process and configuration information from the key users and define the business system based on that information. These individuals may develop process flowcharts for the existing and new system processes, develop methods of resolving process gaps, identify report and data requirements for the respective modules to support the end users, and identify data conversion requirements to support their modules. Functional Champions are responsible for module testing, coordinating and facilitating key user meetings, scheduling key users for system tests, preparing process documents, approving training documentation, and ultimate training of the end users. Some of the major responsibilities for this role are as follows:

  • Identification of user requirements within their functional areas.
  • Provide expert knowledge of the subject area.
  • Understand the “as is” environment and provide functional expertise and knowledge of the existing business practices.
  • Responsible for the successful configuration, processing and implementation of functional area software modules.
  • Reconciliation of user requirements to the new system capabilities.
  • Liaison between user community and project team; Act as a mentor and liaison to other users of that functional area.
  • Represent the user interests in system design and software configuration decisions.
  • Design and configuration of software parameters for each module.
  • Identify and implement business process improvements and changes.
  • Acts as the transforming agent to identify process improvement opportunities within the new CRM software application.
  • Actively promote the adaptation of business practices and adoption of processes utilized by the CRM software.
  • Sponsor the change management required for cautious or resistant users.
  • Work with users to develop necessary processes or procedural changes to accommodate the software application.
  • Work with users to foster active participation in project and ownership of the new system.
  • Schedule and provide dedicated end-user training without interruptions.
  • Provide a communication link between project teams through attendance at regular Project Team or Team Leader meetings.
  • Contribute to status reporting.
  • Thoroughly test the software and associated procedures to confirm that the primary business requirements are met.
  • Input issues into the main log (e.g. open issues log) that surface during configuration, training or other team activities and also follow-through on resolution of those issues

Project Leader

This role will require an individual with strong management and communication skills who understands the operation and objectives of the CRM implementation. It is possible to have an outside consultant or vendor consultant and internal person that share the Project Leader responsibilities, however, advance planning must dictate specific roles and responsibilities. The Project Leader is the person responsible for the overall project planning and progress toward the implementation. This individual is responsible for monitoring, maintaining, and adjusting the project plan (based on the input and deliverables of team members), providing implementation experienced leadership strategies to the Executive Sponsor, and ensuring the effectiveness of the application consultants assigned to the project. Other responsibilities include reviewing and assisting in issue resolution, coordinating task dependencies, and establishing milestone project goals that keep the project on time and within budget.

Other specific responsibilities may include:

  • Conduct or facilitate the Implementation Project Kick-off and Status meetings.
  • Manage the customer relationship with the vendor.
  • Confirm solid understanding of corporate objectives and expectations; if necessary, reset objectives and expectations.
  • Approve the implementation schedule and project plan.
  • Measurement of plan vs. actual with variance analysis.
  • Track, monitor and report on the project status (percent complete vs. costs expended; hours remaining).
  • Continually monitor scope, time frame, budget and risk.
  • Manage project resources to assure maximum efficiency, effectiveness and resource utilization.
  • Manage consultants on project.
  • Periodic risk management – project risks and people risks – and development of mitigating strategies. Significant or high impact risks should be addressed with the Executive Sponsor.
  • Recognize change management issues and risks; develop recommendations and mitigating strategies.
  • Periodically measure and confirm stakeholder, Executive Sponsor, Champion, Key User and System Administrator satisfaction.
  • Manage proposal, engagement letter and/or contractual fulfillment.
  • Regular meetings with the vendor and occasional discussions with Steering Team.
  • Communications reporting – status reports and update e-mails or memo's to Executive Sponsor, Project Team and Steering Committee.
  • Vendor invoice approval and verification of payment within agreed upon terms.
  • Validate that the deliverables from the project represent the views and meet the business needs of the Steering Committee and/or the Executive Sponsor.
  • Define and monitor corrective actions where necessary.
  • Assist Steering Committee with resolving issues and solving problems upon request.
  • Validate resource allocation according the statement of work and level of effort.
  • Approve or recommend changes to project scope, project organization or allocation of project resources in a timely manner.
  • Assist in change management issues as they relate to users of the system.
  • Support the Executive Sponsor and Steering Committee in their achievement of project goals and objectives.
  • Conduct and organize at least monthly implementation Status Meetings.
  • Verify communication of schedule and meeting changes to all participants.
  • Monitor open tasks and issues list.
  • Assist in resolving Project Team or project member disputes.
  • Act as main liaison to the Executive Sponsor and vendor consultants



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