Dynamics AX – Benefits of Team Investment in User Testing

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Implementing your new Dynamics AX system is already a high priority for your business. You have spread your team thin and taken them away from their already full schedule to participate in design sessions, project meetings, and document reviews for your ERP project.

It can be tempting to trust that during unit, data migration, and integration testing, your valued implementation partner has tested the system much more fully than your team could.

But please, resist that temptation to shortcut, reduce or rush through your user testing cycles. There are added benefits!

  • Team verification that system matches requested design

It has probably been a few weeks or perhaps a month or so since the team last reviewed your requirements and design documents. Test scripts based on these requirements provide not only a refresher on the agreed-upon configuration and design, but also a strong documentation trail you can provide your auditors proving that you verified whether these requirements were met.

Working on this together through user testing also reinforces the agreements you made as a team when you approved the design.

  • Find configuration gaps that are unique to your company’s business process

It is not always possible to expose all of your unique business needs during a few weeks of focused design sessions. Bringing in objective users for testing to perform the tasks they do on a daily basis can uncover nuances or exception scenarios that were not identified previously.  Good Catch!

  • Identify situations where procedural controls might be needed to fit your business model

Controls and compliance are a very important aspect of your business. You have developed a certain set of policies and procedures that surround your current system and practices.  User testing is an excellent forum for vetting which procedures need to be updated, added, or are possibly replaced by an automated control step or feature.

  • Provide users with early hands-on exposure to the system to promote buy-in

New systems can be intimidating on their own, and change is often difficult, especially for users who have invested a lot of time and effort becoming expert in your current systems and processes. Bringing these users in to help with testing allows them to roll up their sleeves and get their hands on the keyboard to put the system through its paces in some real-life scenarios.

Early exposure to the system during testing is a jump-start to training and helps with organizational change management and buy-in. Users feel they had a chance to become acquainted with the system in a safe forum to raise questions and concerns and are already quite familiar with it when they sit in their first end-user training session.

This article was written by Juanita Schoen, Dynamics Project Manager for Tridea Partners. Tridea is a leading Microsoft Dynamics provider.

by Tridea Partners

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