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User Support & Operational Procedures Design

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Activities in Phase 4
Phase 4 - Design Increment
Content Model Relationship

Contents

Activity: User Support & Operational Procedures Design

Objective

The User Support & Operational Procedures Design activity creates documentation and training programs for all users and technical support staff. These operational procedures should be defined for implementation and evaluated as part of a process of Continuous Improvement.

Major Deliverables

  • Confirmation of audience
  • Training needs analysis
  • Outlines for operational Manuals
  • Requirements and design for online help
  • Training Plan

Tasks

Identify Audiences

Objective:

In designing documentation and help, one of the primary considerations is the nature of the audience and the situation – understanding who will need the documentation, when and why. The key to understanding this is to spend time with the target audience, put templates in front of them, and continually measure their feedback.

Input:

  • Findings on People, Organisation and its Capabilities

Output:

Identify Training and Administration Guide Requirements

Objective:

In this task, an estimate is made of training needs. The amount of training varies depending on the complexity of the system, the amount of change to the organisation and the ability of the trainees to absorb the material presented. Training may include:

  • Departmental users – Detailed instructions on accessing and using the new system’s functions, completing any new forms, and performing related manual procedures
  • System operators – Technical instructions on running the system and printing and distributing reports
  • Management – Overview of the system\’s functions, with emphasis on on-line inquiry and reporting.

Training cost and schedule estimates are also included in this planning effort.

Input:

  • Overall Release Functionality
  • Detailed Business Requirements for Increment
  • Initial Report Design
  • Solution Architecture
  • Training Audience Identified


Output:

Develop Outlines for Operational Manuals

Objective:

The User Procedures Manual describes how the user interacts with the system to accomplish specific business functions. These procedures should document all user actions, application screens, reports and processing functions that require user input or review. The Operations Procedures Manual describes the procedures and schedules necessary for daily, weekly, and period-end operations. The Operations Procedures Manual will cover system restart procedures, backup policies and error logging activities. A Desk Procedure provides very specific details regarding how the person does their job using the system. Desk Procedures are commonly developed by an organization as lasting documentation for new hires, auditors and supervisors who need to know how to operate the system at a detail level.

Existing manuals will provide some insight into the level of detail required by the organisation.


Input:

  • Initial Report Design
  • Software Design Document (ETL Design, Database Design, etc)
  • Solution Architecture
  • Training Audience Identified
  • Training and Administration Guide Requirements


Output:

Develop Help and Tutorial Styles for End Users

Objective:

Throughout the project there will be training and support requirements, this task is specifically designed for the environment that is accessed by a business user. If a customized Business Intelligence application is to be developed any help systems or tutorials should be outlined in this task.

Online help and tutorials, which can be of significant help in assisting end-users, are frequently cited by users as a source of dissatisfaction. There are a number of process problems which lead to poor quality help. These include failing to allocate enough time and resources, having help screens produced by user interface developers who don’t understand what is needed, and robbing time from the production of help to make up for cost overruns and schedule slippages. Help is often treated as an afterthought activity, to be performed by developers at the end of the project.

There are several ways to improve the process of creating a help and tutorial system:

  • Plan for it, and allocate enough time and resources
  • Build the help system into the iterative release schedule, so that the system is available with early incremental releases, and feedback will be applied to the problem
  • Get trained people to do it
  • Use modern technologies, such as wikis, that allow for more dynamic documentation


Input:

  • Initial Report Design
  • Software Design Document (ETL Design, Database Design, etc)
  • Solution Architecture
  • Training Audience Identified
  • Training and Administration Guide Requirements

Output:

Core Supporting Assets

Yellow Flags

  • Manuals are defined in a fashion that are prone to quickly becoming outdated with software changes
  • Users do not play a role in reviewing and creating training content

Key Resource Requirements

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