Getting The Most Out of Your Program Management Software
There are a large number of program management software out there, all of them equipped with their own unique features and styles. It’s clear that selecting the right program management software can solve a number of your problems — they can increase your organization’s efficiency, increase enrollment rates, minimize the need for human resources to manage all the data, give you quick access to data whenever you need it, help share data, etc.
These are some of the main reasons organizations use program management software. But this software can only help you if you use and implement them correctly across the organization. If you fail to leverage them efficiently, you can run into a large number of problems. You can create redundancies in your organizations, you may have to hire personnel just to handle software that should be self-sufficient, and you may run into other issues as well.
In this article, we discuss how you can find the right program management software and how to get the most out of them.
1. What are your Needs?
The very first thing you need to do is have a very clear idea about your goals. Before selecting a program management software, you should ask yourself the following questions:
- Why do you need a program management software? What do you hope to accomplish?
- What level of collaboration do you need it to facilitate?
- Are all your organization’s projects going to be handled internally or will the software be accessed by external clients, vendors, etc?
- Do you need a program management software that only facilitates the scheduling of tasks? Or do you need one that also has a collaborative space where different team members can interact and work together?
- Do you need your program management software to have invoicing features? Should it be able to track hours and payments?
These are just a few of the common questions you can ask yourself before selecting a program management software. However, while evaluating your needs, you’ll come up with a wide range of other questions as well and you should write all of them down so you can choose the best software for your needs.
2. Use a Cloud-Based Platform
In today’s age, you should only go for cloud-based program management software. In fact, 60% of business leaders across the globe are importing all of their online and virtual data into cloud-based platforms for a number of reasons.
To put it simply, cloud-based program management software can lower your upfront costs drastically, provide easy deployment, integrated tools, and give everyone simple and central access to the same information that’s constantly updated. This helps lower the costs of operation while enhancing user-friendliness and accessibility.
Furthermore, cloud-based program management software can also be accessed anytime and from anywhere in the world, using any devices — be it a computer, tablet, or phone. This is especially valuable in the modern working landscape where an organization may be spread out across the world and across different time zones.
3. Prioritize User-Friendliness and Accessibility
In all likelihood, your program management software won’t be used by just you or your team. You’re probably getting a program management software that you can implement across the organization and that your families and community can utilize. As such, you need a user-friendly and accessible software that anyone can pick up within a few minutes.
The program management software shouldn’t be so complex that people take days and weeks to get a hang of them. In that case, most people will simply abandon the software and go about working the way they used to. You essentially need a software that has all of the features you need and it should be easily accessible. Furthermore, individual programs and classes should also be easily organized by the program so you don’t miss them entirely.
4. Go for Scalable Solutions
Technology changes and grows at a rapid pace. Your organization may also change and grow at a rapid pace. You need to use a program management software that can move along with these changes.
Your program management software should grow and expand as technologies around it also grow. Furthermore, it should be able to handle an increased span of projects as well. You should essentially look for a program management software that has the options to scale with your company. You want to be able to add to or customize your platform as your company grows.
5. Involve your Team Completely
Just because you’re happy with a program management software doesn’t mean your entire team will be as well. And ultimately, they’re the ones who’ll be using the software on a day-to-day basis. To ensure that the solution is suitable for everyone, you should include the entire team — or at least the core members of the team — in the decision process.
Your team members will be a lot more attuned to the challenges they’ll face in their specific departments. As such, they need to evaluate the software on their own so they can determine if it serves their purposes or if it will lead to confusion and redundancies.
Finally, if you involve the team in the decision-making process, they’ll feel more personally involved in the chosen solution. Since they had a hand to play in its implementation, they’ll more rigorously work towards its success, even if that means enforcing its utility in their respective departments.
6. Choose a Software with Vendor Support
A lot of issues may initially come up when you’re implementing a program management software. As such, the software should come with great vendor support so you can always reach out for help. In order to make sure of this, check the company’s track record with other customers.
7. Mandatory Adoption
Once you decide to use a program management software, there’s no going back, and you should make this completely clear to all of your employees. Regardless of how effective the software is, you’ll always have traditionalists in your team who’d prefer to do things the old way. You need to make it very clear that that’s no longer an option.
The only way a program management software can succeed is if the entire team uses it. The whole purpose of this software is to enhance the accessibility of information from a central location. If someone doesn’t use the software, it will lead to a number of redundancies and inefficiencies in the organization.
8. Training is Crucial
This leads from the previous point. Some people may not be willing to accept the new program because they may not be tech-savvy or they have trouble using the program management software, even if it’s user-friendly. That’s why it’s crucial to offer multiple training sessions for all those who need it.
You don’t need to make it mandatory, but float it as an option. You can also ask your IT team to help anyone out if they’re having trouble with the software. This will create a low-stakes situation where they can learn to adopt the software.
Program management software are extremely useful and beneficial. They can increase access to information, enhance organization-wide transparency, enhance productivity, and also lower costs of operation. But the only way your program management software can succeed is if you implement it correctly.
You need to start by selecting the right program management software based on your needs. Software like Digital Signup, for example, can drastically increase your revenue, save time, and eliminate all redundancies in the organizational process. You should also ensure that your entire team is involved in the decision-making process, that they adopt it company-wide, and you should provide training sessions to your employees.
If you follow all of these tips, you’ll get the most out of your program management software.