Project and Service Automation Software Insights Blog

Why You Shouldn’t Use Standalone Project Management Software

Posted by Mark Engelberg on Oct 13, 2017 3:01:07 PM

All service companies need project management software, and most of them need better project management software for one major reason: they lack one single system to unify their project data with other departments, drive project and sales activities, and learn from historical project experiences. The standalone nature of the project systems used today makes those things impossible.

Here's why you shouldn't use standalone project management software.

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Why Collaboration Tools for Project Management Don’t Breed Success

Posted by Mark Engelberg on Oct 5, 2017 9:26:55 AM

Robust and reliable project management is essential to maximizing profits while sustaining growth and strong customer relationships – and it’s rarely the result of people working harder and faster. You need both the right project management mindset and the right technologies to consistently deliver successful projects.

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3 Types of Projects You Should Track

Posted by Mark Engelberg on Oct 2, 2017 11:02:04 AM

When you think about making improvements to your project management methods, you should start by defining what a project is, identifying the kinds of work you perform, and understanding what data is most important.

There are three major categories of projects you should track:

  • Internal (for your own business) projects
  • Billable external (customer) projects
  • Non-billable and fixed-fee external projects (where costs need to be monitored)
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The Easiest Way to Streamline Field Service Interaction with Customers

Posted by Mark Engelberg on Sep 21, 2017 4:37:24 PM

The paper-based forms often used by service businesses in their customer-facing field service interactions typically include information about the services performed, charges to be billed, and customer acknowledgment/acceptance of those services and charges.

Unfortunately, field service forms are rigid and isolated – they’re difficult to adjust to evolving customer and field service needs, and their information exists in its own little world, difficult to find and utilize within your project management and CRM systems.

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Are Your Systems Preventing Acquisition Strategies?

Posted by Mark Engelberg on Sep 12, 2017 11:11:36 AM

Growing your business requires taking advantage of new opportunities as they arise. If your current systems hold you back from pursuing deals, forming partnerships, and acquisition strategies, you need to consider implementing a modern, flexible enterprise system. Choosing one that integrates CRM, ERP, and PSA will allow your business to make the best decisions in support of long-term profitability and success.

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Why Double Entry is Bad for Business

Posted by Mark Engelberg on Sep 1, 2017 10:25:12 AM

If your growing services business is like most, you use multiple systems and leverage common tools, such as spreadsheets, to share and report data between your departments/teams. But having your data dispersed that way slows you down – your people are continuously re-entering data to ensure that information is consistent, all processes are complete, and everyone has the data they need.

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Is Tracking Retainer Balances Making You Crazy?

Posted by Mark Engelberg on Aug 25, 2017 11:42:30 AM

If your professional services organization is like many others, you collect up-front fees, commonly called retainers, from customers for work that has yet to be performed. This may be in exchange for a discount rate for services, poor credit history, or as part of your overall business model. Once received, tracking retainer balances and reporting on them to the customer often involves multiple manual processes that challenge your billing department, confuse project managers, and lead to disagreements with the customer.

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How to Collaborate Better with Project Stakeholders

Posted by Mark Engelberg on Aug 22, 2017 2:15:48 PM

how to collaborate betterCollaboration is optimized when you communicate well with everyone on your internal project team, so you undoubtedly want to optimize communication/collaboration with your external stakeholders as well. Projects are more successful when you can collaborate externally while continuing to maintain internal team integrity and security.

This post discusses how to collaborate better with tools like Slack and Yammer with external stakeholders and vastly improve your project collaboration.

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Complex Service Quotes That Go with Your Complex Products

Posted by Mark Engelberg on Aug 11, 2017 8:27:28 AM

If your business provides services as part of your business model, you’re always quoting a variety of services related to the complex products you manufacture or resell. While standard CRM functionality almost always includes basic quoting capabilities within a sales opportunity function, it rarely has more than a high-level capability to produce complex service quotes - like quoting a quantity multiplied by a price for each item, regardless of whether it’s a product or a service. Moreover, CRM certainly won’t provide the logic and dependencies necessary to make intricate quoting processes automated, repeatable, and error-free so your sales reps and professionals can produce estimates and quotes quickly and accurately … every time.

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Asset Management and Tracking within Your Project Management System

Posted by Mark Engelberg on Aug 4, 2017 10:46:18 AM

To provide services for assets (machinery, for example) owned by their customers, service organizations often use outdated systems that force them to deliver, install, repair, and/or provide parts for those assets using separate tools or spreadsheets. From computer software or hardware to machinery, electronics, swimming pools, restaurant equipment, trucks, or other heavy-duty equipment, customer assets span a wide range of types and involve quantities or changes that may fluctuate frequently. The ability for a service provider to accurately track those assets directly affects delivering efficient and profitable services that the customer has paid for and ensures that assets not covered under a contract aren’t serviced inadvertently, leading to a loss.

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