Big sheets of paper, minimum size A3, or a whiteboard of flipchart
Markers and pens of different colours
Sticky notes of different colours
Possibly tape to attach sheets of paper on walls or adhesive putty
What is this tool and what is its purpose and benefit?
An implementation roadmap is a tool that visually specifies the timeline and the sequence of activities to take for the implementation of a service or product for its finalisation and launch to markets. It displays and contains information of the implementation phases, events, actions and activities to take, for example a commercial campaign or staff training, timeline and progress of implementation of the service or product. Roles and responsibilities can also be added to it. Careful planning of implementation helps to reduce costs and risks of implementation, and keep the project on the right track. An implementation roadmap can also be used for implementing solutions, upgrades and enhancements for the whole lifecycle of a service.
Steps how to use this tool in practice
The same steps apply when working individually, in pairs or in a group.
Take a big sheet of paper and start drafting an implementation roadmap for the service. This should be one that has already been tested and is ready for delivery to markets. Add the name of the service that needs to be delivered as the heading.
Start adding to the map the procedures, deliverables, activities, events and tasks, timeline, people and roles, and quality assurance actions and elements, all with their own place in the timeline. Show how these are related. You can draft these with pens or markers, and add sticky notes until you are happy. This is your working version.
Procedures – Add what needs to be done to deliver the service; what are the main processes and standard operations that are repeatable and efficient.
Deliverables – Besides the service what are the other outputs and deliverables needed and delivered, for instance packaging or brochures. Add all deliverables. You can also mark whom and what these are destined to and why, and what is the benefit.
Activities, events and tasks – Add all activities, events and tasks to be undertaken in order to implement the service or product, for instance brochure printing, building a client list, etc.
Timeline – Add the timeline on events, activities, tasks and procedures, and anything else needed.
Roles and people – who is needed to help in the implementation, what are their roles and responsibilities and when.
Quality assurance – Add the measures to ensure the high quality of the service, for instance client satisfaction research.
Before finalising the implementation roadmap, reflect on the professional identity of yourself and your organisation during each step. See if these are in line with each other, or if something is new and you want to keep it. You can also reflect on the costs of the activities.
Finalise your roadmap into a visual form.
Tips and hints for using this tool
You can look at the implementation roadmap after a few days with fresh eyes to see if something should be changed.
Keep the options open for any unexpected events.