Ever find yourself without the right tool for a job?
Maybe the screw fell out of your glasses, but you don’t have one of those tiny screwdrivers you need to replace it. You try the edge of your credit card, a thumb tack from the wall, a paper-clip you bent into a point.
Maybe you find a solution, or maybe you don’t. Either way, it’s annoying. Plus, it takes far more time, energy, and effort to fix than it would if you had the right tool.
What To-Do Lists Are (And Are Not) Good For
The difference between project management and basic to-do lists is huge, yet it is a difference that’s often misunderstood. Post-it notes. Moleskine notebooks. Day-planners. Google docs. Any of the hundreds of organizational apps you can download to your phone. These are all versions of to-do lists. They can be very good at organizing individual projects, and there’s nothing wrong with keeping a running list of personal to-do items. However, basic to-do lists are not good for team projects because they fail to provide the one thing every team needs to keep a project moving forward: Visibility.
If you’re managing a team, it’s vital that you understand what everyone is working on. But if everyone on your team is working from his or her own personal to-do list, you’ll have little visibility into what’s actually happening on your team most of the time.
5 Problems Faced By Teams Using Basic To-Do Lists
1. Inability to Plan
When everyone is working off their own lists, you have zero visibility of what’s getting done, what’s not getting done, who’s going to do what next, or what resources might be available to meet an unexpected need if one arises.
2. Inability to Adjust to Changing Demands
Projects rarely go from start to finish without a few changes to the overall requirements. If you’re not working from a team-based project management system, you’ll have to pull everyone together, see where everyone is on their tasks, then figure out what work needs to continue, what needs to change, and what can be stopped completely.
3. Anxiety About Deadlines
Project managers are in charge of getting projects done. But when you don’t know exactly when different parts of a project are going to be complete, it’s difficult to be confident that your project will get done on time. Will the different team members get their part of the project done? Will you have to bug them about it as their individual deadlines come due? That uncertainty can easily lead to feelings of anxiety for project managers.
4. Frustration Between Project Managers and Team Members
It’s no fun to be a project manager who has to constantly bug team members about tasks, deadlines, or overdue deliverables. Likewise, if you’re a team member struggling to complete your part of a project, the last thing you need is an email from your project manager with the subject line “Status?” This kind of “project management by status update” process can quickly become a source of tension between employees and managers.
5. Fire Drills
Your team is working on a project. But your boss just came in with something urgent. Does your team have the bandwidth to complete the task? How long will it take? Will it require overtime? What will be the impact on the other projects your team is working on? Without a clear view of your team’s activities, these questions won’t be easy to answer.
Here’s How a Project Management Software Can Help…
In teams with a good project management system, the status of everyone’s work is easy to see. The project manager will have reliable, easy-to-use project management software and will be able to see everything that’s happening with your projects. If you sell consulting as a service, you’ll also be able to use professional services automation (PSA) to see and schedule the resources your company has available to deliver your services. It’s no fun to work on a team where everyone feels like there’s too much to do and not enough time to do it. If you know the frustration of trying to keep your team on track without a good project management system, there are tools that can help.
Project management software will help your team work smarter, together. We hope you’ll consider trying ours, which can help any team get more work done in less time with less stress for everyone.
7 Reasons to Run Sales and Services Together
Projects with billable hours require careful orchestration between what resources you have and what projects you’re producing for your customers. As your company grows, so does the need to balance input and output.
Professional services automation can give your organization a huge leap forward as you seek to get more done — at higher profits — with your resources. The goal is to sell and deliver services in a way that turns new buyers into loyal customers for life.
But all kinds of problems arise when a company has the sales team working from Salesforce while the services team uses a separate project management system. The two teams — Sales and Services — can’t see what the other is doing. Nor can they review notes during the handoff after a customer makes a purchase. As a company, you’re trying to create an exceptional experience that starts with the experience with the salesperson and flows seamlessly through service delivery.
We at Klient Software have identified seven ways your organization could benefit from using a PSA software that’s built natively within Salesforce, rather than separate systems between your sales and services teams.
1. Visibility for Everyone
Customers are prospects first, and the transition from one to the next can be rough if your front-end teams can’t easily communicate with your service and fulfillment specialists. Sales needs to fully understand what they’re selling to ensure your prospects aren’t set up to become instantly dissatisfied customers. Likewise, services teams need to be able to grab the baton from Sales and run with it.
Having access to detailed customer information in a CRM will make their jobs that much easier — and the customer’s experience that much better.
2. Mobile Access
Another benefit to using a PSA system built natively within Salesforce is having mobile access to the platform and the information it contains. Because Klient’s professional services automation exists natively within Salesforce, any information related to accounting, document management, project management, resource management, or any other PSA data can be pulled up on the smartphone or tablet of your choice.
This gives sales reps, service and product teams, and leadership easy access to the information — and an easy way to input data, too.
When information is added to a centralized system, leadership and operations teams can strategize and forecast with greater clarity than ever before. Instead of needing reports or data from individual departments every time a planning session occurs, the information is easily accessible from one software system. This will cut down on the time it takes to organize results, strategize for improvement, and implement changes so your company can grow faster and provide even better services or products.
Current customers will be happier, and new customers will start out that way.
When your PSA system runs within Salesforce, any data collected there becomes easier to monitor and extract. This gives the teams responsible for auditing your business a better, faster way to assess the state of each department and your entire organization. Additionally, because triggers can be set up within the system, it can be used to ensure approval processes are adhered to across the entire company.
This can speed up delivery and production, ensuring your customers see the fastest turnaround times you can offer.
Salesforce is the world’s number one CRM for many reasons, but one of those is its configurability. Using a PSA that’s native to Salesforce combines the automation of accounting, invoicing, project management, proposals, and resource management with the customizable setup of Salesforce. Instead of trying many different software systems to find the one that works best for your organization, use one powerful system the way you need to by creating labels, forms, and workflows that work for your business, not the other way around.
When you can set up the system to gather the information you need, your PSA system is that much better at making business happen for you.
6. Data Security
With Salesforce, you have the ability to restrict access to objects, fields, and records, so only the people in your org who need to see sensitive information have access to it.
If you aren’t sure how your CRM is set up regarding these security features, you can run a quick Health Check in Salesforce to increase security with one click.
7. Client Satisfaction
Every feature we’ve discussed so far adds up to one thing: increased client satisfaction. When a prospect converts to a customer, you want them to stay as excited about your product or service for their entire customer lifecycle as they were when they signed up. Having visibility across internal teams, more robust reporting and planning capabilities, and enhanced information security features.
This will ensure jobs are completed faster, products are delivered with the highest quality, and clients are as happy as they possibly can be.
Many organizations know what the power of a capable, customizable CRM brings to their business, and many also know the benefits of having a PSA system to run both project management and resource management.
Combining CRM and PSA into one easy-to-use, mobile-accessible platform gives your organization even greater control, visibility, and output. And we know your customers are going to love the results.