Did you ever wonder how a new program is implemented at GCS? What may seem simple on the surface does have some complexity to it. Here are a few things to know:
- Each program is custom developed for our clients. Because their requirements are usually unique, each program is created individually in the GCS system to insure we can accommodate the unique needs of a client.
- It all starts with information gathering. Once our sales team secures a new client for GCS, we identify a Client Services Director who will be the program’s manager through the start-up and continue as we move into the daily management of the program. Our first task (after the introduction to the client, of course) is to work with them to identify all the information we’ll need to set up the program in our systems. We have a simplified business requirements document that we use as a checklist to help us insure that we “turn over all the stones” related to the information we’ll need for the set-up.
- Analysis of the requirements plays an important role. Because each program is unique we have to carefully pay attention to what we’ve received to be sure we understand it and can translate it into what we need to create a program for GCS. Oftentimes our customers’ language is different and we must learn their terminology to understand how to translate that information into our “language” for the implementation. Clients’ systems and processes are also unique so everything from the data layout for the information we’ll receive to how we’ll send data back to them will be very different from program to program.
- Information Documentation summarizes it all. We do have a structured program implementation guide that we utilize to compile all of the program requirements into a single location. The implementation guide will contain information as simple as our clients’ contact information to the complexities of data transmission, scripting and dispositioning requirements just to name a few. Compiling this information into a single location helps us relate the documents together to be sure we have a cohesive program that can be implemented.
- Program Development is a cooperative effort. During the development phase, multiple departments are involved in the implementation. Our programming team works on creating the data layouts, setting up our system for data delivery and reporting while the scripting team creates the on-line call guides and scripts the call centers use. Our tech services team assists with setting up all of the requirements we need for caller ID, messaging, etc., while our training team develops the program training materials. These are just a few examples of the cooperative efforts that occur during the program start-up process. The CSD team is coordinating the effort, tracking the status, forwarding questions and responses from the client and generally attempting to keep us on track from the start-up date.
- Test, test and re-test. The testing phase is a very important piece of the process. We want to test every aspect of the system to insure we can import data, it flows through to our scripts and that we can pass data back to the client and produce the required client elements such as daily reporting to them. Testing is meant to identify we have a successful set up but its main purpose is to identify the issues. In many cases clients also require that we pass test data to them to be sure we have met their requirements.
Once we’re able to get a good test, the fun begins. The average program set-up can be anywhere from 2 to 6 weeks based on the program’s complexity. The process is a team effort and couldn’t be done without the involvement of the entire GCS team.