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Accountability and activities of the client in an SF implementation

I received multiple requests after my previous blog to make it exhaustive. Inquiries were around ‘I am in the client team what are my tasks’ ‘what falls under client accountability’ ‘what activities do a client own’ ‘Partner did not explain my role’ ' what to do and when' etc

I am hoping to help answer these questions and my idea is to keep this blog simple for easy understanding and suggest a basic template that can be used by anyone. Based on the scale of implementation and commercial agreements additional items may be added.


  • SF Implementation phases never include DISCOVER (sales and scoping) & RUN (production support) phases they are pre and post implementation phases respectively.

  • Partner should never be asked to assist in making process and business decisions.

  • Conducting regular business cannot take full seniority while implementing and migrating to SF.

  • Its ok to miss requirements, but not ok to add requirement gaps during flight within the original scope and timelines.

"I don't think implementation methodology matters" is a mistaken conjecture, SuccessFactors is a very different animal and needs a unique specialized time-tested procedure.

“What do other customers do” is not a good question to ask a Partner. Client team must know in and out of their requirements and what is best for their users.

“I have a day job, I cannot do this now” occurs when client planning and accountability is missing. Client team must be fully staffed and with dedicated hours for the implementation team.

“I need to go-live, yesterday” never rush complex deployments, no point saving a penny today to spend several dollars tomorrow. Fast-tracking an already rapid type of deployment may lead to complications.

Customer team accountability in a SuccessFactors implementation:

[Tried to put it in a chronological order per Implementation Phases. None of the below are Partners/Software Vendor responsibility they can only lend a helping hand upon request]


  1. Review and absorb SOW. Understand Scope and Objectives.

  2. Provide access to all SuccessFactors instances

  3. Team setup, agree to roles and accountability

  4. Set up the team on SAP ONE Support Launchpad

  5. Describe the current state, objectives, pain points, desired future state via HR landscapes, questionnaires, readiness checklists, process documents etc

  6. Participate in Kickoff and ask well-thought-out questions

  7. Attend Orientations for all the modules being implemented and document process variances

  8. Provide inputs for timeline and planning. Project Plan is Partner responsibility.

  9. Agree and align on project tools to be used for collaboration and governance

  10. Participate in System Demo sessions and discuss process variances

Signoff readiness to start



  1. Take part in all Requirement Gathering Workshops

  2. Complete configuration Workbooks

  3. Identify gaps and initiate change requests

  4. Engage SAP for areas of enhancements and product limitations

  5. Validate all requirements are captured and make business process decisions

  6. Provide particulars for Data migration and Integrations

  7. Develop test scenarios and test scripts

  8. Develop communication and change management plan

  9. Develop admin & end user training strategy

  10. Develop support strategy

Signoff requirements



  1. Participate in all Iterative solution review

  2. Request instance refresh and clones as required

  3. Testing data preparation and loads

  4. Execute iterative testing and user acceptance testing

  5. Document defects and retest fixed defects

  6. Create tickets for product issues

  7. Identify trainers and system administrators

  8. Participate and develop cut over strategy & apprise stakeholder

  9. Prepare documentation; user guides and process guides

  10. Attend system administrators and other relevant training

Signoff UAT



  1. Provide production data

  2. Participate in training and knowledge transfer sessions

  3. Execute End-user training or deliver user guides

  4. Participate and execute production cutover

  5. Validated Integrations

  6. Complete all technical setup for production

  7. Smoke testing of the production instance

  8. Go/No-Go decision

  9. Execute Go-Live communication and launch

  10. Kickoff Hyper-care and post-go-live support



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