What Every Cutover Manager Should Know to Ensure a Smooth SAP Implementation

  • by Srini Munagavalasa, PMP, Principal Business Integration
  • October 21, 2009
Cutover is one of the final steps for a successful implementation of any SAP project — and one of the most complex and critical components. A clear understanding of the processes, communication plan, staffing plan, resource requirements, execution steps, and expectations can help drive a successful cutover. Learn what is entailed in this process, what you need to do to make it successful, what to avoid, and what you need to keep an eye on.
Key Concept
The cutover process refers to migrating current functionality, introducing enhanced functionality, and transferring master and transactional data into an SAP system. In this process you switch on the SAP system of record and turn off existing legacy systems.

I’ve noticed that even experienced team members are confused between cutover and integration testing. Cutover is not meant to test the system’s functionality or validate data. Instead, cutover captures the realistic downtime for the production system. During the cutover period, all systems (SAP and legacy) are down and unavailable for business use.  This downtime should be as short as possible and should be during the weekend so as not to affect the business.

As a cutover manager for release, you are responsible for defining, planning, communicating, simulating, executing, identifying, addressing, resolving, and escalating issues and risks. I’ll walk you through the steps you should take to ensure a smooth cutover. First I’ll go through the three phases of a cutover and then I’ll help you develop an ideal cutover plan. The Downloads section online includes several templates you can adapt for your own projects.

Srini Munagavalasa

Srinivasa (Srini) Munagavalasa has 14 years of experience in various SAP modules. Srini has worked on multiple SAP global implementations at major clients. He has experience as a project manager, deployment lead, build manager, and technical development manager.

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1/9/2014 6:42:07 PM
Somdeb Banerjee

Hi Srini,

Thank you for the excellent article.


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