Most businesses recognize the importance of a pre-implementation plan when it comes to business software, but many also fail to realize the importance of a post-implementation plan. Post-implementation is when the real work begins: Getting staff on board, knowing your post-sales rights, and integrating your software are just some of the challenges you can expect to face.
Field service management organizations in particular face some of the most difficult challenges, with multiple siloed departments and a dispersed and field-based workforce. Field service organizations that fail to realize the importance of the post-implementation period will suffer from software deployments that are devoid of value and will lose out on opportunities to capitalize on the product’s extensive functionality.
In order to join the 70 percent of field service organizations (research available to Gartner clients) who will “cite customer satisfaction as a primary benefit from implementing field service management software,” field service business leaders need to focus on post-implementation processes to get the most value out of their investment.
In this article, we’ll focus on mHelpDesk, as an example of how focusing on the post-implementation processes can accelerate and optimize this field service management software.
What to do before you begin implementation
Define your objectives
Ensure that your objectives are aligned with mHelpDesk’s capabilities, and have a back-up plan for any objectives that the product can’t take care of.
Import your data
Discuss importing data with an mHelpDesk support agent. Imported data should include technician information, customer information, schedules, and product data.
Align your operations team with the new technology
Make sure that your operations team and IT team are working together toward a common goal. Often, these teams have separate priorities. However, as a leader, you’ll need to direct these two teams to ensure that processes, the new product, and performance are aligned.
Engage all users in a change management plan
Why do I need a change management plan?
Limiting company-wide involvement in the implementation and post-implementation phase can undermine the buy-in of the employees who will use this software every day. Ultimately, your core employees will be the ones who determine how much value you derive from mHelpDesk, not a lone project manager or IT specialist.
Here’s what to do
- Choose a small implementation team that represents the main software user groups of the business, including non-management members of staff. This way, employees will be assured that their interests are being represented, and that this is not just a top-heavy exercise. This team will act as your agents of change, facilitating conversations and helping to mitigate any resistance.
- Go through the issues and pain points that all areas of the business are currently suffering and convey the ways in which mHelpDesk will solve them. This will help communicate to employees the need for the software and the value of the product, despite the impending learning curve. If your employees see implementation as a vanity project, they’re unlikely to get on board quickly.
- Plan a phased rollout so that users can get used to the technology over time. Expecting all employees to adopt the software straight away won’t work and will overwhelm even the most enthusiastic employees. This will also help work out any kinks in the software implementation early, embedding a “lesson learning” attitude into the process. This will demonstrate your commitment to making this an accessible exercise for employees.
- Work with mHelpDesk support to plan a phased software rollout that works for all your staff.
- Don’t deliver training in generic blanket sessions. Cater each session for each team. For example, your sales team won’t need training on dispatch features, just as dispatchers won’t need training on lead management functionality.
Use appropriate integrations to bolster mHelpDesk’s capabilities
Why do I need extra integrations?
No software is a panacea to all your business needs, and integrations are a great way to bolster the functionality of a product. Just because you’ve purchased comprehensive field service management software doesn’t mean you should instantly get rid of any other applications you’re currently using.
Businesses can also get tied up in using multiple systems that don’t communicate with each other, which can risk double-data entry. Integrating applications that you already use is a great way of using them to their full potential, and of bolstering each other’s impact.
For example, by integrating mHelpDesk with an accounting solution, tons of information such as customer information, tax rates, and price lists can automatically be synced. Again, by integrating mHelpDesk with an online payment processor, you can avoid double-data entry into two separate systems.
Examples of integrations that are possible with mHelpDesk
|Online payment processing||Stripe, PayPal, Authorize.net|
|Calendar synchronization||Google Calendar|
- Work with relevant departments (sales, payroll, etc.) to come to a decision on what applications you intend to keep using alongside mHelpDesk and on any applications that you’d like to begin using that integrate with mHelpDesk.
- Check out the full list of applications that integrate with mHelpDesk on GetApp’s integrations page.
- Check out user reviews of mHelpDesk on GetApp to discover which applications best integrate. Use the search tool to search for specific keywords.
Know what after-sales support you can access
Why do I care about the after-sales process?
Knowing exactly what post-purchase support you’re entitled to will help you configure the kinks you might come across in the early stages of implementation. Your relationship with mHelpDesk should not end at the purchase stage. In fact, the mHelpDesk support team are among your most valuable assets during the post-implementation phase.
What you should know
mHelpDesk’s customer support team is there to help you eliminate efficiencies and identify opportunities for user improvement—and ultimately to help you maximize the ROI on your investment. You can call, email, and live chat with customer support agents, and also add your own suggestions for product improvements to their customer feedback forum, which other users can then vote on.
- If you don’t already know what after-sales support mHelpDesk offers, contact an mHelpDesk support agent who can detail the methods of post-purchase support you can receive. For example, find out how mHelpDesk can help with configuration, version updates, and extra training.
- Take some time to review your new workflows that come with mHelpDesk. Are they working, or can they be configured? Are there any tasks that could be automated?
Next steps and extra mHelpDesk support resources
Here are some extra steps you can take to accelerate the mHelpDesk post-implementation process:
- Check out community help forums where other mHelpDesk users discuss troubleshooting, features, and mHelpDesk support issues. This can help you identify common issues and tips and tricks to help you get the most out of the software.
- mHelpDesk offers free daily training sessions for users, including an open Q&A. Use these sessions with product experts to help advance your use of mHelpDesk features.
- Read the FAQs page of mHelpDesk, which can help you discover new ways to use the product and help you solve any issues you may have with the software.