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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  Review Outdated Information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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Industry Insight Trends & Technology

Jonas Premier Scores High in Software Advice Review

Jonas Premier, a division of Jonas Construction, achieves high overall ratings in a third-party review from SoftwareAdvice.com.

 

With Jonas Premier growing at an exponential rate, it is evident their customers are more than satisfied with the cloud-based software solution. Of their 26 reviews on Software Advice, Jonas Premier has an average rating of 4.44/5.00, which equates to an 88% rate of customer satisfaction overall. With reviewers ranging from companies with a single employee to companies with 101-500 employees, it is evident Jonas Premier can meet a wide-range of business’ requirements. Majority of the respondents (62%), are construction managers or general contractors, and Premier is designed with their specific needs in mind. With regards to ease of use, Jonas Premier scored 4.27/5.00 or about 85%. This demonstrates how simple, yet powerful Jonas Premier is, and their users truly appreciate the intuitiveness of the software. When it comes to functionality, Premier also scored quite well, with an average rating of 4.33/5.00 or about 86%. The software is easy to learn and navigate, and is fully integrated, allowing users to perform tasks more efficiently and effectively.

 

Forrest Burnson, Market Research Associate at Software Advice provides insight into the excellent reviews Jonas Premier has received, “It is critical for software vendors to provide excellent customer support in this day and age. Especially in the construction industry, where a high premium is placed on trust, reputation and reliability. Jonas’ stellar track record for customer support sets the example that other vendors should follow.”

 

In terms of quality, Jonas Premier ranks highly, with an average score of 4.37/5.00 or about 87%. With Jonas Premiers’ mission to simplify construction software complexities, quality does not take a back seat. Premier prides themselves on offering a truly integrated solution, backed by Jonas Construction Software, with over 25 years of experience in the construction industry. With an average rating of 4.81/5.00 or a remarkable 96%, customer support is Jonas Premier’s strongest attribute. Even more impressive, an astounding 66% of all reviewers gave Jonas them a perfect score for customer support. This lends itself to Premiers’ philosophy of supporting customers throughout the entire implementation process and ensuring their customers are fully trained and ready to use the software in just 30 training hours. Jonas Premier not only understands the importance of providing training and support during the pre-implementation and implementation phases, but also after the software solution is deployed. Their support specialists are experts with regards to Premier knowledge, and this is clearly demonstrated with such a high customer support rating.

 

Karoline Lapko, Vice President of Jonas Premier, is not surprised by these great reviews, “At Jonas Premier, we go above and beyond and set higher standards to guarantee customer satisfaction. With our 3 step training process, we ensure our customers are confident when the go live, and with unlimited direct personal support and training, we are always there to assist our clients in any way possible.”

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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.

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Resources

How to Have a Great Training Experience

For far too many clients, the scariest part about implementing new software is the initial transition from their old software. Migrating all their key data properly and ensuring their employees are trained effectively on the new system is a crucial and important step to their long-term success. If the training process is not carried out adequately their staff may lack the knowledge and confidence they require to become proficient users.  The above indicates just how critical proper training is for a smooth software transition and reduced headaches – but how do you go about accomplishing that? Simple! Just follow these four steps:

Establish Goals –

Establishing goals on both ends goes a long way to ensuring a smooth learning curve throughout the training process. Set clear expectations and then strive to meet them; exceed if possible.

Make a Schedule

Setting out a realistic schedule will get the client to gradually use the software and be eager to learn.

Understand different learning styles

Get to know your client’s learning style and cater to them. People learn differently – some better with shorter training sessions, while others are more comfortable with a hands-on approach. Offer different options so that you can transfer your knowledge in a way that is most effective for your client.

Unlimited Training

Premier believes that offering unlimited training goes a long way in ensuring your client’s success. People learn at different paces, as companies grow employees are hired, or people simply forget how to use certain functions. Offering unlimited training gives clients the confidence that they will never be stranded.

 

Premier is dedicated to help you manage and grow your business. We offer advice on best practices, use a challenger approach and help you get the most out of our software. We understand the importance of the training phase and put an emphasis on always being available, creating efficient training schedules that are flexible, and sharing with our clients all the knowledge we have acquired over the years.

Please refer to our implementation process page for additional information.