Even though you’ve gone live, there’s still plenty of things to consider and keep up with. Last time we spoke about how important training is. But another overlooked component after go-live is documentation. Your documentation can serve many different purposes both during and after go-live, so it is important to make it a focus from the very beginning. Documentation can help keep technical and functional staff on the same page and is invaluable for new hires, too. Here are a couple strategies we recommend for making the best use of documentation.
What do you mean by documentation?
Documentation doesn’t have to just mean software documentation – although that is an important part, too. Documentation can also include technical and functional specs, meeting minutes, conversion reports, project management trackers, training materials and standard operating procedures (SOPs). It’s important to make sure someone (or a team) is responsible for creating and maintaining these documents, especially when the software or procedures change. Make it a point to review these documents on a regular basis to make sure the most accurate information is being conveyed. And if the thought of writing documentation seems overwhelming to you, check out this infograph of 7 tips for better documentation.
Libraries are your friend
Libraries aren’t just for books – keeping a library of documentation is just as important as creating it. Afterall, if you’ve created good documents, you’ve also got to make sure people can find them. In a document library you can not only store all the materials you’ve created, but you can also house whatever other documentation and other artifacts are related to your project. A good repository for documentation can be something as simple as a shared network drive or as complex as a Sharepoint site. Remember that if a lot of people will be touching the documentation and you anticipate a lot of revisions, you may find Sharepoint a little more versatile, especially when it comes to things like versioning and controlling edits. If you’re a little intimidated by using Sharepoint to manage your documentation, check out this article that explains how to implement a Sharepoint Document Management System (DMS).
Documentation may seem like an overwhelming thing at first, but as your system and processes grow and develop, you will be glad that initial documentation is in place and that you have been keeping up with all the changes.