You and your team have meticulously researched project controls software solutions and finally selected a great fit for your projects and organization, but now comes the hard part – The Implementation.
Many organizations face difficult software implementations because they fail to plan and manage implementation risks. It is frustrating when this happens because the whole purpose of implementing a project controls system is to make everyone’s life a lot easier. But if an implementation is not done right, it becomes very difficult to communicate the value of that project controls system and demonstrate a return on investment.
Survival tips for a successful software implementation:
1. It Isn’t Going to Be Easy if You Don’t Prep
Do not assume that the implementation process is like a pop-up tent. Even the best products require some prep work and planning before you can get things working perfectly for your company. The reality is that products do not implement themselves.
To effectively implement a project controls system you need your people, processes, and tools to be in alignment. You want to ensure that the implementation process goes smoothly. To do so, you need to have knowledgeable implementation experts there to help and provide support when you need it.
Organizations that choose ARES PRISM project controls software know that they get a team of implementation experts with a proven track record of more than 25 years of experience and thousands of global implementations. They are not alone in the implementation process; ARES PRISM makes sure that their customers have an implementation team they can depend on.
2. Resistance to Change
Change is difficult for people. Changing project controls systems or establishing one when there was not one in use before won’t be any different. Even though it takes more time and energy to do things the old way, project controls teams may be hesitant to abandon the existing and familiar procedures for monthly reporting cycles, data analytics, and project forecasting.
Address this during the implementation process and make sure to equip your team with the knowledge and skills that they need to make a smooth transition to the new project controls system. Consider naming the process Solution Adoption, instead of the more negative connotations like “Roll Out” or “Go Live”, to help re-frame how the implementation process is perceived.
3. The Executives are Watching
Executives are the end consumer of project controls information (whether internal or external). After all, they were the ones you pitched the idea to, the ones that funded your initiative, and the ones you are accountable to for delivering the results. Don’t ever stray away from this essential tenant.
Many employees will benefit from the project management system– project and program managers, project controls engineers, your customers, and your fellow teammates. However, the executives have a very different picture of what success looks like in their mind– An un-communicated expectation.
It is your job to deeply understand it, help them visualize it, and confirm it. Every executive has their own preferences– Some prefer high-level reports with color-coded graphical representations. While others prefer
deep detail and nitty-gritty performance charts. Each of these is okay, but you need to gather these preferences beforehand in order to avoid the risk of implementation failure.
4. Know The Risks
You are not alone; software implementation plans and best practices do actually exist!
Take advantage of the helpful risk mitigation strategies available in this white paper: Top Risk Mitigation Strategies – A Proven Software Implementation Plan for Integrated Project Controls. It explores 10 of the most common risks associated with solution implementation and learn how to effectively mitigate them with proven project controls implementation strategies.