Automation in the professional services industry has been increasing rapidly over the last several years.
For example, in 2014, 58 percent of organizations used professional services automation (PSA) solutions to increase their productivity and profitability. By 2015, adoption had increased to 77 percent—growing substantially in just one year.
Whether you are looking to implement a PSA solution for the first time or are looking to upgrade to a more sophisticated tool, you are in good company.
Unfortunately, you can’t just choose any PSA solution on the market and expect to get great results. You need to take your time, do your due diligence, and research the myriad of options to find out which ones are best suited to your organization’s needs.
For the best results, talk to stakeholders in your organization to fully understand the problems you’re trying to solve. Armed with goals, it’ll be easier to search for a solution that meets your needs.
From the outset, picking the right software vendor might seem tricky. But if you’re patient and thorough, you’ll find the right solution—one that meets your needs with respect to project accounting, project management, time entry and recording, resource scheduling, and more.
With that in mind, let’s explore seven things you need to look for when evaluating PSA software.
1. Project management
First and foremost, your PSA solution should come with robust project management capabilities out of the box. The right solution will make it easy for you to manage current and future engagements more efficiently while increasing the accuracy of your project metrics across all offerings. As a result, you can complete projects on time—and on budget—every time.
2. Resource planning
The right tool makes it easier to manage and view all resources across your organization. As a result, your team can make sure that the right resources are assigned to the right projects at the right times.
3. Integration capabilities
The average business unit uses nearly 100 different cloud services on their own. As such, it’s important for you to look for a PSA solution that has robust integration capabilities. That way, you’ll be able to connect it with the tools your team needs to operate even more productively and efficiently.
4. Contract management
Leading PSA software platforms help organizations like yours ensure operational success and increase profitability by making it easy to manage every aspect of contracts—including people, expenses, and billing methods—across every project.
5. Financial management and revenue recognition
Make sure the PSA solution you choose gives you deep insight into your company’s finances. That way, you can ensure that you have the funds you need to knock each project out of the park while improving cash flow on a continuous basis. Leading solutions ship with a number of advanced features, including real-time insights, sophisticated budgeting tools, and cost allocation capabilities, among other things.
6. Time and expense management
It’s impossible to optimize your profitability when you lack deep insight into scheduling and expenses. With the right solution in place, your team will be able to access time and expense data via any device at any time. As a result, your financial projects will be more accurate, and you’ll be able to recognize revenue in real time. Add it all up, and that’s the ticket to a more efficient operation.
7. Vendor reputation
Last but not least, you’ll also want to look for a solution engineered by a trustworthy vendor that has an impressive track record. Because PSA software is so important, the last thing you want is to roll the dice with an up-and-comer that might be out of business in a year or two. As you research your options, be sure to consider the vendor’s reputation. Look for a solution that comes from a company that’s less of a vendor and more of a partner.
Every organization is different. Still, the above features are must-haves—regardless of a company’s workflows or the industry it operates in.
Are you ready to transform your operations with PSA software?
Picking any software solution is a major decision—and one you can’t take lightly. The right PSA solution will have the above features, but the solution isn’t the key to your organization’s success—it’s just the conduit.
The key is the person making use of that conduit. As such, you’ll also want to look for a vendor that’s invested in your success. That way, you get the peace of mind that comes with knowing you not only have the tools you need to get to the next level—but you also have the makers of the product nearby, who are committed to your success.
That’s the ticket to a happier and healthier organization.
Contact us now to learn more about how the right PSA software solution can transform your company.