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  • Ron Montgomery

When you have a need for speed...

Updated: Dec 15, 2021

When a new customer is ready to outsource to a Third-Party Administrator (TPA), they rarely tell the conversion team, "Take your time," The conversion deadline might be driven by other plans for facilities shutdown, sunsetting a legacy application system, or the launch of a new product. The system conversion timing is only one consideration, so that will require the team to "soup up" the conversion process. Here are four tips to speed up the conversion:

  1. Get solid commitments for sufficient resource commitment both internally and with the client. This will include having backup resources to cover unplanned absences. You will not have time to wait for John to finish his other project. Other projects should be paused or stopped. System maintenance should be put on the back burner until the conversion is complete.

  2. Execute tasks in parallel, not sequentially. Instead of waiting for pristine source data, begin working with what you have. Start testing downstream applications as soon as you have data.

  3. Implement manual workarounds until automation can be completed. Set up mail merge letters until automated letters can be produced. Develop interim data stores, accessible via Excel, until data warehouse and reports can be produced.

  4. Be prepared to suspend policies that are not in good working order and clean them up after go-live.

These will increase project risks and costs and they will introduce post-conversion inefficiencies. As such, you will need to secure executive sponsor support for these measures. If they understand the trade-off between project efficiency and the business value of an early conversion, they will support these changes to allow the team to "go fast rather than to go cheap."

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