“It always seems impossible until it’s done.”
When organizations implement a new field service software solution – or almost any new software solution – they are sure to encounter difficulties of one type or another. Fortunately, complex implementations are not undertaken often, perhaps just once or twice in a decade. But unfortunately, because they are infrequently undertaken, they require many hours of work from a dedicated team and, often, a few roadblocks are encountered along the way. The question is, how can we make the implementation exercise easier?
It was Nelson Mandela who first said, “It always seems impossible until it’s done.” While we do not mean to suggest that implementation is as difficult as what Nelson Mandela encountered on his rugged path to the Presidency of South Africa, we do want you to keep his quote in mind as you and your team work to get it done!
Large-scale project management can be complex.
When many people think of implementing software solutions in field management, they may think that it will be like managing other large projects. When you think about project management generally, you will likely acknowledge that there are five key elements that help to ensure success:
committed project sponsor
- Clear goals and an understanding of scope
- A steadfast project manager
- Engaged stakeholders
- Dedicated team members
In a traditional project management process, the team is seated by a project manager and typically aided by consultants, architects, engineers and various other team members. This diverse group of people brings to the team a complementary set of skills and the required manpower for the project.
It is critically important in managing complex projects that this group of people forms a tight bond and commits to achieving one common goal: fulfill the business case. To help ensure success, there is usually a well-written plan of action with goals and timelines and a team leader who holds team members accountable. Ideally, the team members are fully dedicated to the project, with no other tasks on their plate. In the world of traditional, highly customized software engineering – where the task is to create a tailor-made solution – this is also often the case: the software project team is formed to handle a specific large-scale project and these dedicated team members see it through from start to finish.
Consider the challenges in the field service industry.
In the world of field service, however, it is uncommon to have project teams consisting of members who are dedicated solely to implementing a new solution. It is more likely that several people with a wide variety of roles will be involved in the project, and most often they are working on the project in addition to doing their normal work. And this is where difficulties may arise. Asking people to help implement a software solution that improves the organization’s business processes – in addition to doing the work they typically do – can be risky, because implementation activities are totally different from what they typically do on a day-to-day basis. The risk is that their productivity on both fronts will suffer.
So, in field service organizations, the implementation team is typically different from large-scale project management teams and teams doing organization-specific software engineering. The primary differences are that field service teams that implement solutions are usually smaller in size, they often need to implement an off-the-shelf solution to eliminate the need for an exhausting implementation process, and they often need to assign team members to oversee only specific aspects of the project so they can also handle their day-to-day work.
Complicating factors affect implementation of new field service solutions.
As if it isn’t complicated enough to assign a team to implement a new field service solution, there are also challenges associated with the fact that changing business requirements often occur during the project because of new insights that are uncovered; new features and functionalities that are deemed necessary or desirable; and new regulations and requirements that need to be integrated into the solution.
But how to manage all this efficiently? With Gomocha!
Our company name, Gomocha, is a combination of the words go, mobile and change. We conceived of our name to convey that we are masters of helping you “go mobile” and helping you “change on the go.” We are improving the world of field service with our highly configurable FMP360 platform, which enables field service organizations to make swift changes in the field as well as in the back office.
Consider this cool functionality: With Gomocha’s FMP360 Workflow Designer, you can easily make changes to the workflows according to today’s or tomorrow’s needs, rather than implementing a workflow based upon the organization’s needs at the time the requirements analysis was done. And if customers need something that was not in the platform at the time it was implemented, then our in-house software development team comes forward to design and deliver the new functionality. With our developers’ Scrum framework and agile development approach, they will be in direct contact with you and the rest of the project team to promptly design features that are right and ready for action.
Change management is the final frontier.
The final part is the process of expertly managing change. A software solution, a project plan, and a requirements analysis can all be perfectly designed and deployed, but if the process of change management is not thoughtfully designed and skillfully integrated into these programs, there is still a chance of failure. For this reason, it is critical to keep end-users involved, ensure they remain enthusiastic about the solution and the process, and help them anticipate future changes that will occur in their organizations.
However, the culture within some companies can make change management a rather a difficult task to undertake. To set a framework for success, it’s wise to involve end-user representatives in the project team. If Gomocha developers and implementation specialists receive early feedback from end-users, they can demonstrate how our highly configurable platform can be easily adjusted so end-users can be onboarded quickly to become the platform advocates for your company.
Seeing is believing.
You will be amazed at what can be accomplished when you are part of the project team during a Gomocha FMP360 implementation. Curious what we can do for your field service organization? Want to see the type of guidance and care we deliver? Contact us for a customized demo and a “test drive” – and we will show you the way to greater productivity and higher customer satisfaction. Call 240-403-6001, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit gomocha.com for more information.