Implementation Project Management in the Real World
In part 1 of outsourcing implementation project management, we talked about how to protect your core business by entrusting back-office implementations to professional project managers. In this post, we’ll share specific processes we use to manage our clients’ implementation projects.
It’s important for law firms to know this so they can make the best decisions about managing their implementation projects. Our best practices ensure that our clients’ projects not only complete on time and on budget, they also do it with as little risk and aggravation as is humanly possible.
Why Implementation Project Management Matters
Our approach to project management follows a time-tested model. By following this proven pattern, project managers troubleshoot problems by avoiding them in the first place.
This matters because even small problems can balloon into large ones. For example, one New York City law firm decided to internally manage a small project. They decided to renovate their copier center, so they hired a service dealer to move the copiers into a temporary location. The firm renovated the office, and called the dealer to schedule reinstallation. The dealer agreed and scheduled the move for a weekend.
What neither dealer nor firm realized was that the Saturday of moving weekend was Rosh Hashanah. There was not enough available staff to make the move on time, which seriously inconvenienced the law firm staff come Monday.
This is exactly the kind of mistake that Epiq’s rigorous process avoids.
The Epiq Process of Implementation Project Management
Once we reach an agreement with a client, we assign the transition team to kick off and run the project through successful implementation. Our teams consists of tenured project managers who have extensive experience with law firm implementation projects. Many team members started as law firm operations managers. We build in redundancy by assigning primary and secondary project managers to each client project.
We hold an intensive scope call with our client to identify the scope of the project. Together, we detail equipment, staffing, properties, timeline, scheduling, freight access, technology, environmental factors, government inspections, and vendors – anything and everything that could impact the project scope.
We work closely throughout the process with channel partner vendors and the firm’s IT and operations teams. We speak to them separately and together: We’ll pull the groups into a shared meeting, so they can discuss detailed technical issues.
Once the equipment is delivered, it’s all hands on deck. The Epiq team works closely with vendors and law firm staff to install and integrate the new equipment. Once the equipment is deployed and running, Epiq implementation managers arrive on-site to help manage any remaining issues.
Throughout the process, Epiq’s project management team hosts action-oriented update callsand keeps detailed documentation. We collaborate and communicate with all stakeholders, working with key tasks and scheduled goals. Epiq also provides project management technology platforms so all parties can view relevant information at any time.
Once the project is complete, we hold a detailed post-project review about what went well, what could have gone better, lessons learned, and what to change or incorporate with future projects.
With more than 100 major transitions under our belt, we have a lot of projects to choose from. Below are three representative projects:
Roll out new offices in 12 cities
A client hired the implementation project team to manage new office rollouts in multiple cities across the U.S. The project included addressing staffing requirements, refreshing the copier fleet, installing printers at some locations, and integrating equipment applications such as cost recovery, batch printing, and job tracking with the network. Since we carefully document all learning, each office rollout informed and improved the next one.
Fully refresh a large firm’s copier fleet
A client needed to refresh their entire copier fleet. The project team was already familiar with the client’s existing facilities, but the large-scale refresh included changes to copier vendors, design, features, and functionality. Complicating factors included the need to integrate copier software with upgraded networks and new computing platforms at the client’s office. The project completed on time.
Manage a major reorganization over a single weekend
A client planned to outsource office services and equipment to Epiq, but could not afford downtime. The implementation project team planned the major reorganization project to take place in a single weekend. Tasks included consolidating two large, separate mail and copy spaces, consolidating and reorganizing two supply rooms, creating a satellite service center, and installing new copy, scan, and mail equipment. Epiq team members completed the project in a single weekend.
These clients and many others trust Epiq to deliver complex projects on time and on budget. Expert project management makes it possible.