The core Unit4 Financials platform is an extremely powerful financial management solution which has been trusted by medium to large enterprises for more than 30 years, ever since the original CODA software package it began life as was released to market.
Like all software solutions though, in its ‘out of the box’ state Unit4 Financials may not fit the exact processes of every individual business. As primary Unit4 Financials UK development partners, we also appreciate that amongst the many strengths of the software, there are also weaknesses.
These factors are the two major motivators for any business to look at the possibilities that custom development of the solution might offer. And the simple answer is that it can offer an awful lot, transforming a system that just helps a business run day-to-day into one that powers improved operations and growth.
However, this is far from guaranteed. A custom software development promises much. But to deliver on these promises a project has to be approached in the correct way.
At LEVEL8 we have extensive experience of Unit4 Financials/CODA – both within Unit4 and as independent developers – and of providing solutions to fill the functionality gap, improve the operation of the application, integrate with other applications and save time by automating repetitive tasks.
We’ve got successful software development projects down to a fine art. So, what goes into a successful Unit4 Financials development?
We start with an area that is so often neglected but we know it sets the tone for the entire development project. Developers can be guilty of focusing on the technical nuts and bolts without seeing how these all impact on the bigger picture for a business.
We are part of a specialist Unit4 Financials consultancy though and this, combined with our experience in developing the solution, means we fully understand the importance of requirements gathering, business process analysis and detailed project scoping at pre-sales stage.
We provide general and technical business analysis services and our strengths in process design and software solution design combine with in-depth CODA knowledge to ensure we can identify the best development solution to any problem.
You may have a clear understanding of the issue that you want to resolve, you may not, but our consultants have many years of experience of working on diverse business processes and will bring that experience to your project.
We will guide you at each step and help you to fully identify the solution that works for your business. We are happy to engage at an early stage and guide you through the whole process from the start.
Design & Planning
Once you agree the project; its deliverables and indicative budgets then it’s time to begin the detailed design and planning.
This process verifies the effort and cost estimates so far and provides reasons for variance. It will also provide greater analysis of project risks.
In practice, the detail of this section depend on agreed deliverables and the build strategy. How significant the software program development will be; the extent of database, data flow and touchpoint work; and how collaborative the development process between us and your people will be all need to be taken into consideration.
You can get more information on this site about our design and development work – our Software pages give a more detailed view of how our specific process works.
Project Management & Governance
Strong project management is crucial to achieving successful outcomes and we put this in place through our own project framework (although we can work within any prescribed methodology should our clients prefer). The main project stages we plan and work through are listed below:
Establishing project Governance including escalation points
Identify Critical Success Factors
Roles and Responsibilities outlined for all parties
Timetable of review meetings
Document an agreed set of deliverables from all parties
Establish key milestones and timelines
Establish key touchpoints for full project review
Risk mitigation and planning
Development & Internal Testing
User Acceptance Testing (UAT)
Support and maintenance
We provide regular progress updates with actions completed, costs to date, expected cost and time to complete and updates on any risks, together with any governance and project reports which may have been agreed.
This allows the combined team to monitor the progress of the project and to work proactively rather than reacting to issues as they arise.
We repeatedly deliver project success by undertaking detailed project management up front and ongoing task management throughout the project. With this approach we find the actual project work proceeds smoothly, on schedule and without surprises.
Getting Started With Your Project
The first step would be for some high level analysis to understand which broad approach to take. The broad headings for the scoping would be as above, though they may move around and some new ones be needed for any given situation. From this we would provide a recommended approach. Once agreed we would produce a full scoping document with a project plan, actions, risks and responsibilities.
We have the skills and know-how to implement the solutions mentioned – or to assist your staff in implementing them. In other words, we can provide a turnkey solution or work as part of your team. As always, please contact us to discuss your specific situation. We would be more than happy to spend time with you outlining the options as we see them.
If you would like to discuss your requirements with our development teams then please feel free to e-mail – Dan.Barton@Level8.Solutions or complete any of the contact forms here on our site.