In the service-based business world, there are countless software solutions that can greatly improve your organization’s ability to get work done for clients.
Many options seem all-encompassing. Others appear to be so niche that they only manage one specific area of your business. It can be hard to focus on what your organization needs and even harder to make a decision.
In an earlier article about the differences between professional services automation (PSA) and project management (PM) software, we explained that a PSA system encompasses PM software and changes the focus from the project to the customer.
Here, we’ll explain the differences between PSA and resource management software — and why the best resource management software lives inside larger PSA systems.
1. Resource Management Software Is Just About Resources
Resource management software — or resource planning software — helps managers schedule their people for optimal utilization and workload distribution. This includes both at-a-glance scheduling and the ability to make changes to schedules on the fly.
However, that’s all resource management software does. Standalone systems aren’t tied into the larger strategy of your services business.
2. Professional Services Automation Includes Many Functions Across Your Business
While resource management software focuses specifically on resources, PSA systems include resource management as one of their many functions. This allows leaders to have greater visibility across the customer journey. It also gives employees easier access to the info they need to produce projects or work your clients will love.
Besides resource management, PSA should also include:
- Calendar management
- Document management
- Expense tracking
- Project management
And that’s not all. Your PSA solution can also come with the familiarity and mobile-readiness of Salesforce.
3. A PSA System Within Salesforce Delivers Even Greater Service
A particularly strong PSA system will be built right within Salesforce, allowing your organization to easily access information across the entire customer journey, from the prospect stage all the way to billing and accounting. That includes seeing how resources fit into that mix, both for planning and for analytics after a project. Any employees already familiar with Salesforce will have an easier time picking up use of a PSA system built within a software solution they already know how to use. And that includes resource management software. Additionally, mobile access is also included with Salesforce for ease of use and accessibility.
4. Give More Visibility to More Employees (or Restrict It)
Having PSA set up within Salesforce gives leadership and employees the ability to see more customer information across the customer lifecycle. Sales teams, implementation specialists, project delivery teams, and even the back office can access more customer information right when they need it, reducing the slow-downs that come from interdepartmental inquiries via messenger, email, or intranet. However, for greater data security, customer information can also be restricted to only those employees who need to see it by using access restrictions. If sensitive customer information needs to stay hidden from certain departments or certain employees, it can.
5. Resource Management Within PSA Moves the Focus From Resources to Customers
In the same way that selecting project management software within a PSA system shifts the focus from projects to customers, choosing resource management software that lives inside PSA will do the same. Instead of only focusing on resources, a PSA system will incorporate your planning work into a central system — one where customers are the center of everything.
Selecting the right resource management solution for your business can seem complicated at first. But if you make that decision as part of your PSA selection process, you can quickly narrow down your choices.
You can have better internal visibility, stronger planning capabilities, more data security options, and a customer-centric focus by choosing a resource management tool within the right PSA system.