In our wide experience implementing Oracle WebCenter, we have seen that the following are the most common factors that determine the success of a WebCenter system integration or customization project:
1. Commitment & Clarity from Management – Right budget and clearly crafted Requirement Specification
2. The Technical Expertise of the WebCenter Architect
3. The Attitude of the Development Team
4. The Quality of the End User training
Just like how the success or failure of a commercial feature film is pinned on the Movie Director, a WebCenter projects outcome can be pinned to the Project Manager. The more motivated, organized and focused the Project Manager is, higher is the success rate of the project.
The first Architect who ties up the physical and logical architecture can either make or break the project. His/her mistakes can haunt the organization for a long time and can add unplanned costs at a later stage. In a WebCenter project where all three products (Sites,Portal and Content) are involved you may need more than one Architect involved.
The attitude of the Developers determines if the final product will be “World Class” or “Mediocre”. This is why we always have a grand meeting with the developers to explain about the opportunity that the team has in their hand to impact the lives of the client users. For me and my team, that meeting is equivalent to the locker room session before a super bowl game. Unless the team is convinced that they are doing a meaningful and high-impact work and believe that they have the support from the client’s management and the leadership members of the project, they are going to deliver only a mediocre system. The developers commitment and attitude can substantially improve the usability and the quality of feature set delivered.
Lastly, however great a system we build, if the end users are not properly educated about the system, even the coolest features of the system would be misunderstood, misused or ignored. Training end users is an art and is something that needs to be handled by someone who has the acumen for training. On our project engagements, we perform “Train the Trainer” sessions. We have seen that the person engaged from client side to go and train the user base plays a very critical role in the overall acceptance of the system. More than technical expertise, this trainer requires people skills and training experience.
To sum it up – Commitment, Technical Expertise, Attitude and Training = SUCCESS.