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Let’s Start with a Plan! Preparing for a Successful Upgrade to Tessitura Version 16

Andrew Moreau

Senior Consultant

Andrew has worked in ticketing and marketing operations for small to midsized performing arts organizations over the past thirteen years and is thrilled to work with JCA Arts Marketing clients on pricing and customer behavior initiatives.
May 13, 2024

Many Tessitura organizations have not yet upgraded to the newest version of the application, Tessitura Version 16 (v16). v16 has many exciting feature enhancements, particularly related to memberships, Analytics, and overall usability.

While there is a lot of excitement to start using these functionalities, staff within organizations still on Version 15 may be overwhelmed with getting started on the upgrade and want to ensure its success.

If you find yourself in this position, JCA Arts Marketing has you covered! We’ll work with you to understand how your organization uses Tessitura and apply these findings to a bespoke game plan that you can follow when upgrading to version 16.

In this article, I detail the steps that we work through with our clients to ensure they are set up for success.

Step 1: Staff Surveys and Interviews

This is my favorite part of the project! During discovery, JCA consultants survey and meet with your Tessitura user base. First, we take time to understand your team’s goals with the new version. Then, we talk through, in detail, the job functions of all of your Tessitura users, their comfort level in the system, and your unique business practices.

We typically structure these meetings by the functional departments of your organization, and the feedback from your users is imperative to make sure we address your needs in the v16 upgrade plan. This also helps us identify how new functionality from v16 may help streamline current processes.

Step 2: Customization Audit

After we have the context from meeting with your team, our Tessitura experts will dive into your Tessitura environment with a careful eye towards the customizations that are unique to your organization. We examine reports & utilities, list & output set criteria, and other items in Tessitura that are customized and may need to be modified to be compatible with v16.

Our goal in examining customizations is to not only make sure that needed functionality carries over into the new version but also to identify what can be archived or replaced with new v16 functionality. Or, perhaps an old custom report can be replaced with a simple Analytics Dashboard!

Step 3: Upgrade and Migration Checklist

Using the robust Tessitura upgrade documentation as a baseline, we have adopted an upgrade and migration checklist for these projects that our Tessitura experts use to ‘look under the hood’ of your Tessitura environment.

This checklist details planning and next steps, a review of breaking changes, preparation steps for data migration, and an overall testing plan. This checklist is designed to complement the Trello board that Tessitura will create for you when you begin the upgrade process.

Step 4: Deliverables Designed for Upgrade Success

Based on our surveys, staff meetings, and expert review of your Tessitura environment, we will then meet with your team to review our findings and deliverables that can be followed as a step-by-step game plan for your upgrade. Deliverables include:

  • A timeline for the upgrade, complete with a ranking on how urgent each task is, who is responsible for doing the work, and the estimated effort per task.
  • Recommendations on what can be done in-house by your team and tasks that Tessitura or other vendors should complete.
  • A list of customizations that can be replaced with out-of-the-box Tessitura functionality.
  • A thorough testing plan, highlighting the functional areas that are most important to your organization.
  • Recommendations on how your organization can leverage new v16 functionality.
  • A bespoke training plan for your staff.

The game plan that we provide will pair nicely with the Tessitura project board, and we are also happy to continue working with your organization to execute the plan.

This project is designed to empower your organization’s upgrade team and give them the confidence they need for a successful transition.

I would love to learn more about your organization’s upgrade planning and how JCA can help!

Let’s Talk