What is Microsoft Dynamics Sure Step Methodology?
Microsoft Dynamics Sure Step Methodology is an end-to-end customer lifecycle which describes the
standardised processes and disciplines necessary to implement Dynamics solutions. Sure Step is
structured as a general methodology with a product-specific layer for each Dynamics product,
providing guidelines and best practices to help successfully implement Microsoft Dynamics
solutions. The content consists primarily of prescriptive phase-by-phase and
activity-by-activity descriptions for completing each stage of an implementation. The
methodology can be adapted and applied to different project types:
- Standard—The Standard project type can be used for implementing Microsoft
Dynamics solutions at a single site requiring specific features and moderate-to-complex
- Rapid—The Rapid project type can be used for implementing Microsoft
Dynamics solutions in situations characterized by a limited scope, where the basic
application features are desired and/or where the majority of the customer’s business
processes are not considered as complex.
- Enterprise—The Enterprise project type is a standardized approach for
implementing Microsoft Dynamics solutions in complex single-site deployments, or in
global/multi-site organizations where unique business needs have to be factored on top of a
- Agile—The Agile Project Type represents an iterative approach to
implementing Microsoft Dynamics Solutions at a single site requiring specific features and
moderate-to-complex customizations. This project type gives customers greater control over
the final solution because they can quickly change the direction of solution development and
implementation from one sprint cycle to the next.
- Upgrade—The approach to progress an existing Microsoft Dynamics solution to
a subsequent release of that solution.
Once a project type is selected, Sure Step provides the relevant documents to fit that project
type. Documents are provided for guidance at specific industry levels, including manufacturing,
public sector, retail and service.
What Dynamics solutions is Sure Step available for?
The Dynamics Sure Step Methodology covers the following products:
- Microsoft Dynamics AX
- Microsoft Dynamics GP
- Microsoft Dynamics NAV
- Microsoft Dynamics SL
- Microsoft Dynamics CRM
What are the phases of the Sure Step methodology?
There are six phases involved in the Sure Step methodology, each of these phases consist of a set
of defined activities and tasks:
- Diagnostic—To help the customer determine the right solution to meet their
needs and obtain a key understanding of the solution requirements.
- Analysis—The analysis phase defines the activities required to initiate and
effectively plan the entire project.
- Design—The design phase includes configuration of the overall Microsoft
Dynamics solution and the design of specific customizations needed to satisfy business
requirements identified during the Analysis phase.
- Development—The goal of the development phase is to build and test the
system components defined and approved in the design specifications, including developing
the customizations, integrations and interfaces and data migration processes.
- Deployment—The deployment phase is where all the efforts of the project
team come together for a successful transition to the new Microsoft Dynamics solution. Key
activities in this phase include End User Training, User Acceptance Testing and the actual
cutover to the new or upgraded production environment.
- Operation—The Operation phase defines the activities required to close the
project, provide post-production support and transition the solution and knowledge to the
With each document involved for each phase whilst using Sure Step, both consultant and customer
roles are clearly defined in hierarchies to ensure every person involved in the project is aware
of their tasks and responsibilities.
The benefits of the Sure Step methodology
- Faster implementation time—The Sure Step model provides tools, templates
and best practices which cover all aspects of projects to increase consistency, timeframes,
quality and success of projects.
- Repeatable model—Sure Step is a flexible and repeatable model which can fit
any business or project type, this assures customers you’re using the same consistent
approach and following the correct procedures during a Dynamics integration.
- Increased customer satisfaction—Sure Step allows for a faster project
completion with minimal risk and a lower total cost of ownership (TCO), which can all lead
to increased customer satisfaction.
- Resources—Sure Step provides a standard set of tools and templates which
can be used to guide through the implementation process and help ensure customers’ projects
are completed efficiently. The methodology can be applied to projects of any size and in any
industry, as well as working with multiple project types, helping fit unique business
Resources in the Sure Step Methodology
- Methodology Content—A flow of implementation activities that lead from the
initial business diagnosis through implementation and handoff to operations.
- Tools and templates—Documents and resources help guide the project activity
and system configuration for the end-to-end implementation process. Documents can be
filtered and searched for to provide you with only the relevant content you need.
- The Sure Step Client— The Sure Step Client provides a fully interactive
application with a large selection of documents and templates which can be adapted to unique
requirements. Projects can be created within the application with prescribed templates based
on your choice of solution, product and project type.
- Community resources—Links to other resources available in the Microsoft
Following the Microsoft Sure Step methodology helps both vendors, like us at Mercurius IT, and
customers enjoy more successful implementations of Microsoft Dynamics solutions. If you’re
interested in deploying an ERP solution such as Microsoft Dynamics NAV
please get in touch today.