Agencies frequently talk about swapping out their management systems. Here’s three reasons not to pull the plug just yet.
With the ever-growing number of project systems on the market it can be tough to stay abreast of all the options for your business.
Lately, we have met an increasing number of agencies whose current systems were in place for less than a year before looking to change. Changing systems this often will put a huge amount of pressure on your team’s morale and time, let alone agency finances.
We take a look at the key questions you should ask yourself before swapping out your job management system:
1. Can you pinpoint why the last one failed?
Tech bible Gartner suggests 75% of implementations fail in their initial objectives. Without understanding why your previous implementation didn’t hit expectations you could make the same mistakes next time. Common reasons are:
- Trying to use every feature, straight away
- Failure to set clear project objectives in the first place
- Not getting the right people engaged in the project and introduced to the system, at the right time
- No plan on how you will move on to the new software, and how your team should use it each day
2. Do you know exactly what functionality you need out of the new system?
It may sound obvious but creating an exhaustive requirements list is important: the list will be even better if you can apply scoring criteria. The best requirements lists spell out all of the agency’s potential needs. The requirements are then grouped underneath modules and items are prioritised based on business need. By applying scoring you can avoid the trap of being feature-dazzled or falling prey to a strong sales pitch!
Once you have the initial list then circulate it to the key people within the agency for input and feedback. Not only will your list be better, but also your team will feel more engaged with the project and will be more likely to be happy in your eventual software choice.
One final tip: think about how your needs might adapt with your growth strategy. For example, is there a possibility you may need strong multi-currency functionality within the medium term? Or, do you have prospective clients that would benefit from client-facing portals or specific client facing reports?
3. Does your workflow need fine tuning?
Make sure you’re happy with the business process decisions related to your software choice before you buy.
It can be easy to fall into the trap of thinking good software can substitute good processes, all because the software looks so usable during the buying process.
Agencies that find implementation a breeze have already done their process homework. They know the best stuff about the way they work, the challenges they face and also the areas they want a new system to help them change. This means they select the right tools for the job and implement only the necessary functionality.