Increase in Activation Support Needs – What roles are associated with Activation?

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Traditionally “activation” implies go-live, and all the consultant needs for at-the-elbow (ATE) support.  In the past several months we’ve seen a large number of proposal requests for a wide number of roles associated with Activation, and much more than ATE resources.  Thought it would be good to talk about these different roles and how you might be a part of an Activation support team.

There are several areas associated with Activation.  Let’s take a look at these areas and the potential support role associated with each.  These include but are not limited to:

  • Testing
  • Appointment and Data Conversions
  • Training
  • Technical Dress Rehearsal
  • Command Center
  • Help Desk
  • At-The-Elbow Support


Testing – Integrated testing is often rolled into Activation proposals as clients are seeking expertise in this area.  Consultants with experience in script development, documentation, cross module workflows, and testing project management are always in demand. While traditionally much of the testing itself is conducted by end-users and/or analysts, proposals are often asking for PMs or other resources with this experience.

Appointment and Data Conversions – The task associated with thousands of appointments needing to be converted requires a large number of resources.  While again many clients use end-users to support the task of various conversions, proposals are asking for resources with expertise in planning and executing this phase of activation.

Training – One of the largest needs associated with activation is training.  Principal trainers have developed curriculum materials and now need assistance with class room and e-learning training sessions.  Most activation proposals are asking for credentialed trainers with physician training expertise and/or prior credentialing experience within specific modules.  It’s not uncommon to see a large number of CT needs for a single client.

Technical Dress Rehearsal – Cut over planning and dress rehearsal is a major event within an activation project and often requires expertise in a wide range of areas.  We’ve seen examples of needs for resources in hardware testing, Legacy system support, technical conversion experts, data management, and overall project management of all the components associated with dress rehearsal.

Command Center – Planning for a command center is often times outside a client’s wheelhouse. Outsourcing a PM to pull everything together from location to phone system to hardware to schedules is a fairly common request.  Additionally there are a lot of proposals out there looking for specific ATE resources with command center support.  CTs may also be pulled in to support incoming calls during go-live.

Help Desk – Whether on site or remote, clients are looking for support during go-live and post live stabilization periods.  ATE support and/or internal resources are often done after a couple weeks of support, but a call center may remain for a longer period to manage incoming requests for additional training, system enhancements, optimization prioritization, etc.  Many firms offer a full remote service offering for this area of activation support.

At-the-Elbow Support – Don’t underestimate the challenges associated with managing hundreds of resources spread across multiple facilities, departments, and the command center during go-live.  This portion of an activation support proposal is always seeking firms with expertise in managing schedules, communication, issue resolution, and obviously….providing the best consultants with direct go-live support experience across multiple applications.

As you can see there are needs for Project Managers, Resource Supervisors, Trainers, Application SMEs, and so much more.  While many of us are sometime fortunate to be a part of a full implementation including the activation phase, you can see the number of resource needs is much larger than the pre-planning and build phases of an install. Have your resume polished to showcase your specific area of expertise in Activation Support….because firms will be calling with so many needs coming later this summer and into the fall.

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