Empowering Your Project Manager: The Benefits of an IT Focused Approach to Logistics

One of the things I have noticed while working at SynerComm over the years is that while most companies have employees on staff who possess the necessary technical knowledge to complete their projects, many organizations lack the logistics knowledge that large‐scale deployments require. As such, many companies typically rely on their project managers to handle these deployments. While project managers possess a wide variety of skills, few have extensive experience handling the logistics of large, complex deployments and could benefit from some expert advice and assistance.

To fill this knowledge gap and help our partners succeed, SynerComm created ImplementIT, a production‐readiness approach that offers smooth deployments for IT organizations looking to scale their operations.

Handling the Logistics of Large-Scale Deployments: Tips for IT Personnel & Project Managers

Many project managers and IT personnel often find themselves in charge of coordinating the logistics of large‐scale deployments. To help your next deployment go as smoothly as possible, we suggest reaching out for help from the experts as early in the process as possible.

Experts like the team at SynerComm can help you define, model, and analyze your options when it comes to procurement, staging, testing, coordination, shipping, installation, and support. Even if you ultimately decide not to partner with an external logistics team, your organization can still benefit from their advice and learn how to avoid many of the common pitfalls associated with large, complex deployments that unprepared teams are more likely to encounter.

The SynerComm team is always happy to help and appreciates the opportunity to help organizations consider all their options and plan their approach to any large, complicated deployment. Though each project has unique factors that need to be considered, many deployment projects share at least some similarities. An impact and approach analysis conducted with help from the experts is a small investment that can save your organization time and money while minimizing frustrating delays and other challenges.

The Benefits of ImplementIT

ImplementIT has been specifically designed to help set project managers, and their projects, up for success by offering advice as well as practical assistance.

Though most project managers have at least some prior logistics experience, few have extensive experience handling large, complex IT deployments. To help ensure each deployment goes smoothly, all ImplementIT customers are assigned their own SynerComm project manager. All of our project managers are trained to blend well with your PMO requirements while bringing recent and relevant logistics experience to the table. They also have extensive experience managing and mitigating the common risks and issues frequently associated with shipping (particularly international shipping), as well as the skills required for country‐specific installation and support.

ImplementIT project managers are able to integrate seamlessly with your organization, expanding your team’s capabilities when it comes to large‐scale, geographically diverse, and complex deployments. Your ImplementIT project manager is there to help you make decisions and avoid potentially costly and time‐consuming issues. Our culture of collaboration and transparency means we gladly share our knowledge freely, setting PMOs up for success and teaching them the skills they need to handle future deployments on their own while also offering ongoing support and advice as requested.

The ImplementIT Process

The first thing we do before we begin any logistically challenging IT project is sit down with your project managers to ensure we understand your schedule and your outcome requirements. Once we are certain we are all striving towards the same goal, we identify atomic units for the project, including sites, systems, and milestones, and define the high‐level breakdown structure required to manage the deployment of those units. During this phase, we also take into account all related activities, communications, and deliverable to help ensure the deployment goes as smoothly as possible.

Once all parties are on the same page regarding those higher‐level concepts, our team begins codifying these concepts into a working model. This includes layering in details and assumptions based on our extensive experience and capturing the supporting variables for common decision sets. This model allows our team to work closely with your team so we can effectively communicate and explain cost, quality, and schedule expectations based on our expert assumptions.

Working together, we begin changing the variable decision points in order to gain an immediate understanding of what the impact of various decisions might be. This unique approach has served us very well in the past, which is why we chose to leverage it when designing our ImplementIT approach.
By working together through the options using real‐time impact information, the two teams can co‐author an approach that is mindful of your project's unique considerations. We also work to create a solid rapport and establish open lines of communication between both teams early on in the project. This helps minimize the chance of unwelcome surprises, ensuring we consider all possible options and setting the project up for success. In an effort to avoid unpleasant surprises and ensure the deployment goes as smoothly and seamlessly as possible, we try to ensure all assumptions, risk, deliverables, schedules, measures, and metrics are clearly understood on both sides upfront.

Why Risk & Issue Management is Vital to Project Success

As an IT and logistics professional, I can never emphasize enough the value of a solid approach to risk and issue management. Most large‐scale deployments need to be deployed to hundreds or even thousands of sites and require the coordinated cooperation of dozens of teams and individuals. As such, no deployment is ever completely issue‐free.

Common issues I have encountered over the course of my career include:

  • Installers being turned away by site managers
  • Recently discovered facility issues delaying installations
  • Unexpected customs delays
  • Design and configuration requirements changing mid‐project
  • Unforeseen post‐deployment technical issues

Though at least a few minor issues are likely to occur during even the best‐planned deployment, there are steps that you can take to minimize the number of issues that do occur and mitigate the delays and other problems these issues are likely to cause.

The key to keeping any project on track and progressing smoothly is complete visibility. We have achieved this by creating a single secure portal that handles all tracking, reporting, documentation, testing, and communication. By ensuring all critical information and communication occurs through a single, centralized portal such as the one ImplementIT leverages, we can help ensure that all key stakeholders are on the same page at all times and have total visibility into all aspects of the project.

COVID-19’s Effect on IT & Logistics

COVID‐19 has had a profound impact on all aspects of business, including IT and logistics. Even before the pandemic, many companies already struggled to find and retain qualified IT professionals. Even organizations with fully staffed IT teams often find more work to be done than people to do it. In my experience, even a single disruption, such as an IT team member taking a sick day, can significantly impact business operations and hamper productivity.

To help ensure each project progresses smoothly, all ImplementIT projects include access to a full team of qualified and experienced IT and logistics professionals that you can count on to handle your next large, complex deployment and ensure the job is done right. This means that your organization doesn’t need to pull critical internal IT staff away from other tasks and deploy them out in the field, allowing you to minimize their COVID‐19 exposure risks and cut down on unnecessary travel.

By leveraging SynerComm’s full team of highly qualified IT and logistics staff, you don’t need to redeploy valuable, internal IT staff to handle “rinse and repeat” style deployments. This means that your internal IT professionals can continue to focus on higher‐impact projects and activities designed to grow and safeguard your business.

ImplementIT combines the indispensable technical knowledge of qualified IT professionals with the critical skills required to smoothly and seamlessly handle large‐scale, complex deployments, allowing you and your team to focus on what matters most: your business.

For more information about ImplementIT, or to get started on your next large‐scale deployment, please contact us today.

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