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Industry Insight Resources

Best Practices For Software Implementation

Beginnings are always messy and this is often true in the Construction Industry. Especially at the start of a new project, which can make the entire project messy from day one. Through proper planning, possible pitfalls can most definitely be avoided.

The same can be said for implementing new construction software. Contractors often hesitate investing in a more efficient system – typically not due to the cost, but rather the anticipated stress associated with change management.

By applying your skills and know-how of running a successful and profitable construction project, you can avoid these common missteps when implementing a new construction software. Below are some of the most common roadblocks and related best practices to curb them.

1. Begin with a Plan

When you purchase a new construction software package, approach the implementation process the same way you would approach a new job – with a solid plan. Tap into the resources of your software provider in order to develop a logical and effective implementation strategy in order to be successful. They have helped thousands of clients before you, so with an open mind, allow them to be your trusted partner throughout the process.

2.  Define Success

 

Success is more than simply having the system up and running. Look deeper into defining what success is. What procedures have you found that haven’t worked with your current software and how can those procedures be improved? Identify these measurements of success at the onset of implementing new software.

3.  Assign a Project Manager Lead

 

Typically, you wouldn’t begin a new job without a Project Manager, so do not start a software transition without one. Ensure you have a dedicated Project Manager on board from your company and ensure they play a substantial role during the implementation process. Ultimately, the Project Manager will be one of the champions during start to finish of implementation and further on.

4.  Review Old Procedures

 

The main reason for changing software packages is to increase productivity and profitability. In order to increase this, it is important to review old procedures in order to make the necessary adjustments. Spend the time up front to establish a more standardized structure for all of your jobs and overall operations within your company.

5.  Review Outdated Information

 

Before switching over to your new software provider, review all of your records. By eliminating duplicate vendors, evaluating outstanding items and updating employee information – you can start with a clean set of data, which will help you when developing new procedures or tweaking existing ones.

6.  Approach Implementation in Phases

 

Transitioning over to a new software package should be approached in phases, just like a job. Map out each phase along with your software provider and share this with your team leads. By approaching this in phases, it will keep your staff from feeling overwhelmed as you move throughout implementation because you are giving them time to learn the basics before adding more complex functionality.

7.  Stay Positive and take Advantage!

 

Implementing new software can come with a bag of changing emotions – excitement, dread, frustration and impatience. Change can be difficult but remaining positive and taking advantage of the support your software provider is arming you with, will make all the difference! Keep an open line of communication between yourself and your team, as well as the software provider. Increase your knowledge base and overall efficiency by taking advantage of any additional resources, webinars and much more. Most importantly, take a hands on approach to training in order to utilize the software to is maximum ability.

 

Change is necessary for growth. Set expectations early on and approach the brand new implementation process with a solid strategy!

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AGC Conference 2016 San Antonio!

On behalf of the Jonas Premier Team, we would like to thank all of the amazing men and woman who came to visit our booth. Every year it truly amazes us how incredible an industry that we have the pleasure of working in! Thank you all so much for your valuable time and the amazing conversations.

 

Don’t forget to wear your Hard Hats when on site….SAFETY FIRST!!!

We’ll see all you lovely people next year at AGC 2017.

 

With Great Respect,

The Premier Team.

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Industry Insight Resources

Preparing for a Successful Software Implementation Process

When it comes to the construction industry, having a project plan in place to ensure each project runs smoothly is crucial to the success of that project. Well the same goes with Software. When implementing an integrated software package, the most common complaint is, “we need more training”. While training is the most commonly thought software implementation issue, there are four main concerns that must be addressed to ensure a successful implementation process. The concerns are leadership, communication, project management, and change management.

 

Issues Surrounding Leadership

Leaders need to set realistic goals and expectations upfront, before the implementation process begins to take place. This is the best way to garner positive results, as all parties involved will have a clear understanding of what is required for a successful implementation. Also, planning for what resources will be needed during the implementation process is essential to the success of the plan. Your employees are busy with their daily tasks as it is, therefore if the process is too difficult or unclear, the implementation is more likely to suffer than anything else.

 

Communication

Ensuring everyone is aware and understands the full scope of the implementation plan eliminates the element of surprise and allows employees to prepare for what lies ahead. By systematically communicating and releasing information about the software implementation process, your employees will be more aware and have a clearer understanding of the implementation progress. In addition, it is important to communicate why the change is being made and how it will positively affect the employees.

 

Project Management

The project manager keeps track of all aspects of the job and is relied upon to make sure that job goes according to plan. The same ideology should be applied to implementing a new software. While there is a team handling the implementation process, there should be an implementation ‘project manager’ to keep the process on track. This individual can ensure that the right employees are handling the appropriate tasks and that each person is understanding how the new software works.

 

Change Management

With any growing business, change becomes inevitable. With change however, it sometimes creates aversion amongst those who are resistant to moving away from their old ways. For example, some employees may be more comfortable using spreadsheets that they already know well, as opposed to learning a new software. Change is not an easy process it needs to be understood and managed in a way that people can cope effectively with it. Consult your employees about the implementation, have each one lead a certain part of the training process and report back to the project manager. Knowing the strengths and limitations of your business and your people is vital to a successful implementation process.

 

It is easy to point to training as the main reason why implementation projects struggle, but if all of the underlying concerns mentioned above are taken into consideration, the process will be a successful one.