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Upgrading Business Operations Software? Be Aware of These Dangers

September 19, 2018

Plans to deploy new technology for your company can create both excitement and resistance. Some of your team may look at new software tools like a present or a new challenge. This may be especially true for those most involved with deploying the upgrade.

However, the people who will be most affected by the change might have other feelings. As with any change, there can be a lack of interest, misunderstanding about goals, or even resentment over the extra effort required to learn the new tools.

Amid these different reactions, how do you keep your organization unified? How do you organize your company for a successful step forward to increased productivity and growth? To answer questions like these, Bloomberg Tax writer Xing Gao has collected insights from three leaders in business innovation: Michael Baccala of PwC, Harry Bains of NBC Universal, and Robert Giglietti of GE. As a top site for information, news, and insights about business, Bloomberg.com has published the highlights of the webcast interview.

One of the first points established is that your company has to confront the potential problems. Positive attitude and optimism are helpful in any business effort, but if it comes to the point that difficulties are being ignored, then a focus that is positive could create results that are negative. As Baccala says, the challenges are ultimately what your organization needs to consider.

Among the various challenges, one of the most critical is getting your team to understand and accept a new vision of their work. Bringing in new software is essentially rearranging the work environment. And it requires rearranging people's thoughts and feelings. A new work culture needs to prepare the way for the new work environment or you increase the risk of employees fighting change instead of contributing to success.

No one can deny the fact that "The Way We've Always Done Something" is a real mindset with real impacts on the business. Whether it's a tradition of relying on Excel, QuickBooks, NetSuite, or any other software package, the old way of doing things can short-circuit your efforts to establish something better. As Giglietti explains, you must escape the mentality of patching and repairing, creating a new vision of replacing.

Central to your new vision for the business, a communication plan can make a huge difference in the transition. Bains declared simply, "You have to get the message out to the employees." This messaging could be a series of emails focused on how the new technology will make their work obligations easier to fulfill. It might be a town hall-style meeting to discuss how automating basic tasks will open the way for grappling with more complex and valuable issues. However you personalize the content and the format, time spent on conveying these ideas to your team will be time well-spent.

A final recommendation is about preparing ways to measure the benefit of the new technology. The most meaningful gauge might be cost targets or greater time investments in higher-level tasks or something else entirely. But you need to identify these measures before the deployment. Gather some numbers of how things are currently going for a baseline. The measurable improvements after the deployment can help anchor the new tool within the new company culture.

Insightful business owners will recognize the pattern created by this advice from experienced sources. These principles of communication and culture development can help any software deployment be a success, even though your specific application of the principle will be unique.

 

The transition to new accounting, CRM, or ERP software gets easier the more you can show your team how the tool fits into their best practices. Then the updated software is less of a package dropped on top of the business. it's more of a tool customized to fit your organization's unique niche and value-proposition. aACE 5 is built on FileMaker, which makes it one of the most customizable and most cost-effective business operations products on the market today. It's an ideal match for mid-size companies interested in cross-platform, cloud-based solution, from wholesale distribution to light manufacturing. Learn more about what aACE 5 can do for your business by reading what current aACE clients have to say.

"Instead of simply maintaining our system, they took the time to understand our processes and worked with us to build a customized aACE system suited to our needs. The results exceeded our expectations, saving us several months of man-hours while improving the quality of our products." ~ Tae Koo, Manager of Design and Production, McGraw-Hill
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