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Jan 30, 2020

Digital transformation initiatives are taken up by banks to solve their organizational needs and create a competitive advantage. Yet, the implementation of such programs can be complicated, leading to implementation cycles as long as 9 to 12 months. This can set the eventual outcomes of the program up for failure.

To overcome challenges related to new platform implementation and to navigate the complexities inherent in development and testing, Aurionpro has designed a 6-step rapid implementation process. This comprehensive methodology seeks to introduce due diligence, discipline, and accountability at multiple checkpoints to speed up the implementation process.

Six best practices followed by Aurionpro for rapid product implementation

1. Defining a clear project scope

Setting clear targets with tight control on the project scope is essential to impose discipline on the build process and meeting the project timeline. It avoids the project from relapsing midway. It also prevents wastage of the budget and helps different teams arrive at a consensus must faster. Furthermore, prioritization of “nice to have or must to have” changes, when done & controlled by a change management committee, allow better control on project scope and timeline.

2. Involving the right stakeholders from the beginning of the project
A committed leadership team that can communicate its vision of what the project is trying to achieve is essential. Getting the right stakeholders on board right from day one is key to making the entire process feedback-driven and fine-tuning the details. As a part of the development process, familiarizing the team with the product is essential. Project teams should demonstrate new developments to the teams by conducting WebEx sessions during the development cycle itself and addressing their concerns. This process not only helps in getting the first reaction from the users but also benefits during the user acceptance testing (UAT) phase. Bank product and operations teams can identify how easy it is to use the product post-implementation.

3. Conduct business readiness through GAP Analysis
Gap analysis is essential in assessing whether the business requirements are addressing the bank’s customer needs during implementation. By demonstrating how the product will function in the bank’s environment and identifying gaps in its performance, the team can further brainstorm on taking steps to successfully meeting the set objectives.One of the challenges in the gap analysis phase is the limited visibility to the bank of the product business workflow. To address this, project teams should ask the bank for test cases. This process ensures educating the business and operations team about the platform, and the result is a well-tested platform with business cases built around user pain points. Another critical point to remember is to involve the right stakeholders to collect business requirements in the gap analysis stage, who are the end-users— this helps in reducing the user-buyout.

4. Keeping an eye on the quality
Implementing a platform that is tested and implemented makes for a faster time to market. Banks who install a highly adaptable platform can meet any customer requirements. Since it needs minimal customization, the product implementation can be achieved much faster with ready-to-deploy functionalities that come out-of-the-box. A critical challenge in the development and quality check phase is third party integration issues. Investing in a product that is already compliant with third-party applications helps to ensure that the banks can address this challenge and continue to deliver innovation without any disruption in the face of emerging technologies and regulations in the future.

5. Involve IT as a gatekeeper during the implementation
With continuous collaboration between the different units, it is the IT that acts as the gatekeeper during the implementation process. Bank IT team who conduct a POC of all interfaces during the development stage in the bank environment, remotely or onsite, can identify integration issues well in advance. By exercising control and maintaining accountability, the bank can avoid scope creep and address all the customer requirements and meet the project timelines.

6. Rollout planning & implementation
Before the big bang rollout, conducting beta testing in the bank’s environment by inviting actual customers of the bank will ensure that the customers are familiar with the product on go-live. One of the ways banks can counter production environment challenges is to review and test the product remotely during the UAT phase by connecting to the bank’s environment with its existing systems and conduct one round of sanity and performance testing to help speed up the implementation time. Conducting regression testing in the bank’s environment also renders that new features do not cause any disruption to the existing systems of the bank, thus safeguarding the bank from any downtime. Also, all data to be migrated should be tested to ensure a smooth transition from the legacy system onto the new platform without any loss of data.

By adopting these best practices, banks can implement a complete digitized platform & go live in 4-5 months. This means that not only can banks begin to realize the value of their digital transformations much sooner, they can also stay responsive to the market demands and meet customer’s expectations promptly.

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