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Microsoft Solutions Framework

Envisioning Phase
Planning Phase
Developing Phase
Deployment/Stabilization Phase

The Deployment/Stabilization Phase

Note: Microsoft seems to be encouraging MSF more for infrastructure deployment than application development. As a result, this phase is actually known by two names. Deployment is used for infrastructure deployment, and stabilization is used for application development.

The Deploying/Stabilization Phase, which culminates in the Release milestone, is where the solution is actualized.

There are four interim milestones in the Deploying/Stabilization Phase:

  • Rollout Begins
  • Training Complete
  • Rollout Complete
  • Deployment/Stabilization Complete

The goal of the deployment/stabilization process is to identify and resolve as many issues as possible to minimize the number of recurring problems.

Two deliverable have been identified that are important relative to the Release milestone:

  • Post-Rollout Baselining of User Profiles and Usage Scenarios
    • In the Deploying Phase, the project team needs to determine precisely how the projected “to-be” compares with the final solution. This information will then serve as a solid basis for future technology implementations.
  • Project Review
    • The project review should cover the events that occurred during the Deploying Phase and should compile the information from the interim milestone reviews as well. The focus should be on the problems encountered (what went wrong and what went right) to determine the relationship between the actions taken by the team and those successes and failures. This information will be used to form best practices for future projects.

The Team

The team members focus on deploying the new technology to all of the targeted users, stabilizing the solution and transitioning the support to a standard production mechanism. During this phase, a subtle shift occurs in the dynamics of the project team. Throughout the prior phases of the process model,the focus has shifted from product manager to program manager. Here, the logistics manager will step to center stage as the role that the majority of activity centers around. The logistics manager will often share focus with user education as the systems are actively deployed, users receieve the appropriate training, and the operations and support systems are activated.

  • Product Management
    • Positions the solution with the customer and users during deployment.
    • Establishes and maintains user feedback mechanism.
    • Prepares for post-implementation assessment.
    • Obtains customer signoff.
  • Program Management
    • Compares deployed solution to original scope.
    • Assesses unimplemented functionality and prepare for future implementations.
    • Tracks progress of deployment and coordinate team activities.
  • Development
    • Evaluates the technical implementation and resolve problems.
    • Supports Program Management in assessing unimplemented functionality.
    • Supports Logistics Management with hand over to support organization.
  • User Education
    • Adjusts the training schedule as needed to reflect implementation changes.
    • Ensures suitable training is delivered for each of the five areas of distinct training needs: trainers, implementers, administrators, operations and support personnel, and end users.
  • Testing
    • Monitors performance metrics.
    • Supports Development in resolving problems.
  • Logistics Management
    • Handles material procurement—ordering and stores inventory and delivery.
    • Manages physical mounting and solution installation.
  • All Team Roles
    • Perform milestone review.

The Release Milestone

In the MSF Process Model, the responsibility for quality rests with every member of the team. Responsibility for quality in the release cannot be delegated to a single team or team member. Release of the technology solution is the result of agreement between the leads or managers of each functional team and management and support organizations that the solution is ready for transfer to the infrastructure management team. Not only does the team decide, but the customer should have a say in this decision as well.


Last updated:
Copyright 2004, Adam Stanley