25 Experts Discuss the Biggest Mistakes Companies Make When Buying Workforce Management Software - ClickSoftware

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25 Experts Discuss the Biggest Mistakes Companies Make When Buying Workforce Management Software

December 15, 2015 Dana Liberty 3 Comments

The decision to invest in workforce management software is a wise one. Even SMBs are increasingly turning to workforce management software to gain better control over their business operations, communications, scheduling, and more. But with so many workfblog_Mistakes in MWMorce management software solutions on the market, how do you know what solutions are best-suited for your business?

There are many things to consider before making a decision, such as scalability, whether you’re spending too much for too little functionality, whether you’re buying more software than you need, and how your new workforce management software solution will be implemented, among many others. To help you determine whether you’re making the best decision, we searched the web for the best workforce management software buying advice and reached out to a panel of business leaders, HR pros, and management experts, and asked them to answer this question:

“What Are the Biggest Mistakes Companies Make Buying Workforce Management Software?”

Find out what our experts had to say below.

Meet Our Panel of Business Leaders, HR Pros, and Management Experts:

 

·         Steve Langerud

·         Dan Buckhout

·         Morgan O’Mara

·         CJ Silva

·         Kacee Johnson

·         Fred Guelen

·         Anthony Myers

·         Pano Savvidis

·         Curt Finch

·         Kyle Antcliff

·         Jeff Eichel

·         Brock Murray

·         Joey Price

·         Paul Beaumont

·         TechTarget SearchFinancial Applications

·         Samantha Williams

·         Karen Schwartz

·         Steve Goldman and Don Giffels

·         Liveconx

·         Chad Yee

·         Lauren Hasegawa

·         Top 10 Reviews

·         Brian Westfall

·         Dave Foxall

·         Pam Baker

 

Steve Langerud

  

@SteveLangerud

Steve Langerud is a workplace culture consultant and principal of Steve Langerud & Associates, LLC based in Grinnell, Iowa. He has worked with over 15,000 people on professional and career development in the workplace. 

There are several areas in which companies can improve when considering the purchase of workforce management software…”

A well implemented workforce management system can increase efficiency, productivity, and engagement. 

Being clear about the need, specific about the deliverable, and focused on measuring what they seek is the key to success with workforce management systems.

I have been involved in many workforce management system implementations and common themes emerge between companies.

What companies can improve:

  • On the front end, companies fail to dive deep enough into the employee pool to fully explore the functionality of a system and capacity of workforce.
  • At installation, companies underestimate the expertise, staffing, and training to maximize the implementation of a new system.
  • During implementation, companies allow some users to opt out actively and passively. Less than 100% implementation compliance voids the practical benefits of this major investment.
  • After implementation, companies forget they have a new system! Continuous assessment allows the system to monitor outcomes, improve performance, and become an integrated part of the company.
  • Over time, companies forget to try and measure the outcomes of why they wanted a system in the first place. Keeping that goal front and center improves performance and confirms the investment.

Dan Buckhout

@70kft

Dan is a seasoned business management professional, strategic leader, and savvy tactician. For over 30 years, he has devoted his career to optimizing the operational side of businesses. He has held several management positions in publishing and advertising, as well as a long tenure with Boy Scouts of America as operations director.

A passionate analyst and problem-solver, Dan stays on the cutting edge of workflow technology to implement systems and quality-improvement programs that increase efficiency in the creative environment at every stage.

Today, Dan leads the Traffic team to ensure the highest caliber performance from all departments and high-quality deliverables, on time and within budget, for 70kft clients.

“There are several key mistakes companies make buying workforce management software…”

 

  • They fail to take the first step in the right direction: back. The first step in a workforce software projects is to step back, assess your current state and develop your desired future state. Once you have done this, then you can envision how your system can move you from one to the other.
  • They overlook the “Three Ps”—Process, Process, Process. Many companies assume that new management software solves process problems. It doesn’t. A thorough process mapping and review exercise is always needed before management software is considered.
  • They neglect to build a functional requirements list. In order to properly evaluate software, functional requirements must be specified and prioritized. They become the rating criteria when evaluating software options.
  • They don’t review more than one option. Finding the optimum solution for your workforce requires competing several viable candidates against each other.
  • They don’t involve representatives from all of the primary user groups in the evaluation process. Everyone across your organization will have to live with the solution chosen. Make sure there is wide representation of users at the table during evaluation.
  • They opt for the cheapest solution. The decision about which solution is the best for your workforce is a matter of value, not cost. A lower cost option that doesn’t perform a key function as well as a higher cost option may cause operating inefficiencies that cost your organization far more over time than the initial outlay.
  • They implement too quickly. Once the best solution is chosen, the key to implementing is starting small and gradually transitioning more users. Some implementation issues don’t appear until adequate scale has been reached. Allow for the system to scale out gradually so that problems can be solved methodically as they arise along the way.

 

Morgan O’Mara

@morganomara

Morgan O’Mara is the Content Coordinator at Record Nations, a document management and cloud storage company.

“The biggest mistake companies make when buying workforce management software is that…”

They do not consult everyone in the company about their needs within the organization. Often, the software will be picked by one person without consideration for the other people that will be using it. This can create confusion among employees and may even make some peoples jobs harder.

 

CJ Silva

 

@KOVACorp

CJ Silva is currently the Vice President of Operations for Kova Corporation. He is recognized in both public safety and in private sector contact centers as a subject matter expert in the design, deployment, and enhancement of call recording solutions.

“The biggest mistake companies make when purchasing a WFM solution is…”

Inherently limiting the role of the WFM solution before the purchase. WFM as a stand-alone tool provides an organization valuable insight into their staffing needs based on historical call volumes, skill sets, and other metrics. While most organizations stop there, a select few look to leverage WFM and incorporate data from other call center solutions like quality monitoring, coaching, process analytics, speech analytics, customer feedback, and e-learning to maximize productivity within a schedule. Having an integrated solution can allow a supervisor to see the schedule and truly understand why adherence occurred or not. With process analytics, they could see what applications were being used during non-adherence. With speech analytics, a supervisor or director could analyze what the root causes were during periods that did not meet service level goals. The right tools can create a paradigm shift within an organization. Management is often defined as being able to expedite the process of climbing the ladder of success. Leadership is often defined as being able to determine the ladder is leaning against the correct wall. So the question organizations really need to answer is: Do you want Work Force Management or Work Force Leadership?

 

Kacee Johnson 

@KaceeBOP

Kacee Johnson, founder of Blue Ocean Principles, is a regular speaker and commentator at Technology, Business, Accounting, and Legal conferences nationwide, focusing on business development, marketing, sales, and Cloud technologies. Awarded the CPA Practice AdvisorMagazines Top 40 Under 40 Award in 2012, 2013, and 2015, she is recognized as one of the young professionals leading businesses into the future. Johnson’s management career is diverse, marked by a demonstrated ability to create solid business plans, determine product needs, achieve revenue goals, build teams, and achieve cross-functional business objectives. Kacee founded BOP with a simple goal in mind: work with people you enjoy, on projects you believe in. Kacee regularly assists App Developers, Accounting Firms, MSP’s, Medical Offices, and Small Business Owners in operational and growth initiatives.

“The 3 biggest mistakes that companies make when purchasing workforce management software are…

  • Not getting team input and buy-in, then wondering why adoption is low. They are instrumental in the success of any application implementation since it is the team members who will be using it. Ensuring the chosen solution is a good fit for their needs is critical.
  • Not taking advantage of free trials and not utilizing them in real-world tests/scenarios. For example, Scalus, a SaaS workflow management software, offers a full 30 day trial that companies can test with full staff and clients. However, most companies will have the decision maker only setup a trial, look at it and then buy. Take advantage of the trials and do a full run through with staff and, if possible, some beta clients to ensure the features and functionality are up to par.
  • When investing in any software or technology, I recommend that you talk to referrals and ask about support, downtime, etc. It is part of the due diligence process that many overlook.

 

Fred Guelen

@FredGuelen

Fred Guelen brings over 25 years of legal, financial, entrepreneurial and management experience. As Planon‘s CFO, he has management oversight and responsibility for all financial and accounting functions, legal, HR, and information technology, as well as facilities and purchasing.

Prior to joining Planon, Fred Guelen was one of the founding partners at Buren van Velzen Guelen (BVVG). BVVG is an international law firm that employs over 60 attorneys, notaries, and international tax advisors. He has extensive knowledge and experience managing complex (cross border) mergers & acquisitions, private equities, restructuring, and financing projects. Fred Guelen studied law at the University of Leiden and the University of Amsterdam.

One of the biggest mistakes companies make when purchasing workforce management software is…”

They fail to define or communicate their goals to participants and vendors. Many vendors list their unique functions, features, how easy it is to use. All great, but do these things solve the company’s problems? Sometimes vendors will show non–relevant features to hide specific weaknesses. If a company doesn’t validate the vendors’ business experience, competence, and innovation power, they can miss out on key decision-making factors. One way to make sure this mistake doesn’t happen is to challenge your vendors and ask them to present unique differentiators including key strengths and weaknesses.

Another possible point of failure is that different groups of users use workforce management software in different ways. Back office specialists will utilize its full functionality, managers only need easy access to dashboards and management information, core business employees need access to self-service portals or mobile apps, and professional field engineers need mobile access to work and information even in non-connected environments. Ultimately, the software needs to show how different personas are unified in a single software solution that facilitates multiple functionalities in multiple interactions on multiple devices.

Finally, when purchasing workforce management software, companies can lose focus on their business problems, processes, and output. Some users just like to click through the software, not understanding the full potential of the data at their fingertips. In our experience, this never works and is actually counterproductive. It’s like driving in New York without the proper training and a driver’s license. You might be able to start the car and turn the wheel, but a safe journey across the Brooklyn Bridge requires a bit more experience.

 

Anthony Myers

@bookprimo

Anthony Myers is the co-founder and head marketer of BookPrimo.com, an online booking tool for beauty spas and salons.

“One of the most common problems I’ve seen with companies in their choice of workforce management software is…”

I’ve worked as an in-house digital marketer and I have worked at agencies. Whether I was working with a small team or a team of over 200 employees, in each scenario the company I worked for purchased much more than they needed. At the most recent agency I worked for we had three management tools: Trello, Slack and Basecamp. Talk about confusing!

The best advice I can give business owners who are looking for project management software is to go with the solution that has what you need. All of the cool bells and whistles are secondary. Also make sure you thoroughly research the different levels the company offers. In most cases, the owners of the companies I worked for would simply buy the highest level possible. They would end up paying for features we rarely, if ever, used.

 

Pano Savvidis

@webanywhere

Pano Savvidis is a Digital Marketing Executive at Webanywhere, a provider of learning management systems for the corporate and education sectors in the USA, UK, and Poland. Pano is an MSc Marketing graduate working in the digital marketing industry for over five years and specializing in content marketing and new media strategies for mid-sized and large companies. His passions include travelling, swimming, and listening to good music.

“The biggest challenge companies face in choosing the right workforce management software is…”

Sometimes clients insist in choosing customization over configurable solutions. We believe this is a big mistake that could create long term issues as any major software purchase should always be flexible to strategic business processes and must adapt to business changes.

 

Curt Finch

@CurtFinch

Curt Finch is the founder and CEO of Journyx, the world’s first web-based timesheet application. He founded Journyx in 1996, and it is now used by hundreds of companies worldwide for tracking time and expenses, as well as managing resources.

“When choosing the right workforce management software solution for your company, consider that…”

People can easily make a very professional-looking website and quickly produce software that solves a problem, but then not still be there in 10 years when you need them. Are they audited and certified? Have they absolutely proven to you, with your company’s data, that they can positively solve your business problem? Do they have references in your region and industry?

 

Kyle Antcliff

@Intradiem

Kyle Antcliff is the vice president of marketing for Intradiem. He is recognized as a thought leader on how a real-time workforce delivers a better customer experience. Kyle graduated from Purdue University with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems and holds an MBA from Northwestern’s Kellogg Graduate School of Management.

“One of the biggest mistakes companies make regarding a WFM purchase is…”

Not knowing explicitly what they want out of a workforce management solution. WFM tools have three roles: 1) to forecast volume and the personnel requirement to handle that volume; 2) to schedule their staff; and 3) to manage intraday activities. This intraday management component typically requires manual intervention, and companies often are not aware of the potential resources this will require or how relying on a WFM alone doesn’t always adequately address the real-time response capabilities of the frontline workforce. To be successful in their WFM initiatives, they should be cognizant of where WFM capabilities will max out and how they will address intraday management requirements. They need to ask themselves how much they expect WFM to influence customer experience and costs, and if the WFM alone can get them there. The best investment in WFM includes intraday automation tools that provide greater impact to customer service delivery, cost control, and employee satisfaction, enabling them to move from manual, static operations to a responsive, real-time frontline workforce.

 

Jeff Eichel

@FeatCustomers

Jeff Eichel is a serial entrepreneur, founding three Internet companies and a private equity firm specializing in investing in late-stage, high-growth tech and Internet companies with a focus on enterprise software, security, and SaaS companies. His latest venture, FeaturedCustmers.com, is the is the leading customer reference platform for researching and discovering business software and infrastructure through customer testimonials, success stories, case studies, customer videos, and backchannel reference requests.

“There’s no doubt that with all business software buying decisions, the biggest mistakes are…”

When you don’t let your staff know ahead, getting them ready and then enacting a proper onboarding process, including timeline, training, and simply explaining the benefits to your staff ahead of purchase and implementation. And remember, while your IT may be the ones setting up your system, they’re not going to be the ones who are using it – look for automation tools that your entire staff can use that will actually make your employees’ lives easier.

And with all SaaS, you need to think about your needs. For a workforce management software solution, what are you looking for? Do you just want a time clock or do you want a full HR and payroll software? Is scheduling your main concern? How do you currently handle onboarding new hires? Where could it be better?

Another common mistake is biting off more than you can chew by just buying the big name workforce management software just because it’s the most well-known. In this case, you risk getting saddled with a clunky product that takes longer to set up and leaves you paying for features you don’t need. If you think you may need different features later, then go for the WFM software that enables you to scale.

And don’t make the mistake of interrupting your current workflow. Maybe you use an accounting tool or another tool you like already. You want to prioritize your choice of workforce management software by evaluating the solutions integrate with your existing workflow.

Finally, please never utter the words, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!” We tend to get stuck in our ways, but automating your workforce management is essential to saving time and money, as well as giving your customers more options. It makes your company come off as more professional and modern. A paper trail is not how you want to run your scheduling.

 

Brock Murray

@SEOBrock

Brock Murray is the Director of Web Marketing for seoplus+, a digital marketing agency. He is passionate about SEO and helping SMBs establish and maintain their online presence.

“The single biggest mistake that companies make when they buy workforce management software is to…”

Rush implementation. This software can be transformative, but it isn’t a magic wand. If you have messy organization or an inefficient sales process beforehand, this software won’t fix it instantaneously – it could actually make the problem worse.

Before you implement workforce management software, you need to figure out what problems you are trying to solve and what goals you hope to achieve in the long term and short term. Identify inefficiencies and target concrete improvements. Only then can you implement the software correctly and reach your productivity and efficiency goals.

Don’t rush implementation. Take your time, including a beta phase to identify how the software can be customized to better match your process. Involve your team and take the time to train them and familiarize them with the software. It takes more time and effort, but the payoff will absolutely be worth it.

 

Joey Price

@JVPsaid

Joey Price is the CEO of Jumpstart:HR, LLC, an HR Outsourcing Firm that works with US-based Small Businesses and Start-Ups. He also hosts a weekly podcast entitled Business, Life, and Coffee.

“In my experience, businesses commonly make three primary mistakes when purchasing workforce management software…”

 

  • Expecting any software to be an end-all, be-all solution without also needing an HR/Workforce management consultant and/or staffer. Software is very helpful in making your efforts more efficient, but software solutions only work as well as your processes/systems/policies allow. No matter what software you choose, consider retaining a third-party consultant who can help you make the most of your software while also understanding your workforce strategy/business goals.
  • Underestimating the time it takes for the initial data dump. The larger your enterprise, the more time is involved in exporting data from one system and plugging it into the next. While many software companies tout plug-and-play ease of use, make sure you audit the process each step of the way to ensure it’s not garbage in, garbage out.
  • Expecting customer service to help you optimize your use of the software. Similar to point number one, most software companies use customer service tech to troubleshoot issues – not to tailor the software to your needs. Make sure the person managing the software for your organization is either a trained consultant or staff member who understands workplace management principles and Human Resources requirements for your state, industry, etc.

 

Paul Beaumont

@Octopus_HR

Paul Beaumont is the Managing Director of Octopus HR. Since 2004, our online HR software has been helping UK businesses to reduce their HR admin, gain valuable insights into their employee data, and manage their complete employee lifecycle more efficiently.

“I see companies making five common mistakes when buying workforce management software…”

Workforce management software is a competitive industry. Every year there are more and more entrants into the market. Some are good, and some could cause you some headaches. On the face of it, most systems offer similar functionality, but behind the scenes it’s often a very different story. If you’re in the process of looking for some new software to help manage your workforce, here are five of the most common mistakes that companies make when buying workforce management software that you should avoid.

  • Making assumptions about security and resilience. Employee information stored in workforce management systems such as name, address, date of birth, payroll, and medical information is incredibly sensitive. Having a workforce management system that is secure is therefore an obvious requirement. It is, however, such an obvious requirement that it’s often assumed that all providers will have tight security controls. This, unfortunately, is not the case.
  • If it’s a hosted solution, you should find out if the provider owns their own servers or if they are using shared servers (commonly referred to as the cloud) and what security measures are in place. If they own their own servers, you want to ask where they’re located, as different countries have different rules about data protection. Find out what security measures are in place. Do they carry out background checks on their employees? Is data able to be taken out of their offices? Do they use third party contractors who have access to your data? Do they have a firewall and run penetration tests to guard against hacking?
  • Finally, you’ll want to talk to the provider about disaster recovery measures. Do they keep backups of data? What happens if one of their servers fails or there’s a fire at their main data center? Do they have a mirrored server that they can automatically switchover if their main server fails? It might feel like you’re planning for unlikely scenarios, but consider the implications if you can’t access your system when you’re supposed to be running payroll.
  • Not checking the company background. Rolling out a workforce management system is a big task. You don’t want to go through the process of choosing a provider, training your employees, and rolling the system out only to find that your supplier has gone bust a year later. Company checks are quick, easy, and cheap to perform. Make sure you carry one out and get your FD to give their opinion.
  • Choosing a provider with poor after-sales support. Having workforce management software in place won’t do you much good if you and your workforce don’t know how to use it. With this in mind, you need to find out what training is provided, how it’s delivered, and what costs this is likely to entail.
  • Once you’ve been set up on the system, you’ll also need to receive ongoing customer support. Find out what times and days are these services available, if there are any SLAs in place, and how the support is delivered (email only, support forum, instant chat or telephone?). You shouldn’t just take the salesperson’s word for it. Before you sign a new contract, give their customer support a call and see how long it takes to get someone on the phone. To be extra sure, ask for some references from happy clients. If they’re a reputable supplier they shouldn’t have any issues giving you some references from customers operating in a similar industry to you.
  • Not testing the system in real-life scenarios. Most prospective clients that we speak with have a shopping list of features that their system should provide. While this is a sensible approach, most shopping lists that we see are quite general and don’t go deep enough to be useful. For example, your shopping list may include “expense management.” Most providers will be able to tick this box; however, if your company wants to be able to route employee expenses to different approvers based on expense type and amount, not everyone will be able to do this for you.
  • A shopping list of features is a good place to start and can be useful at reducing the initial list of providers. However, you’re never going to be able to write down every permeation of scenarios that’s important to your organization. You need to spend a significant amount of time trialing the system and working through real-life scenarios to make sure your preferred vendor can actually work for your business.
  • Failing to ensure that it’s future proof. Presumably, the provider will update their system with future product releases and new features, so ask for a list of new features they’ve released in the past year and look for how they educate their clients on how to use these new tools. Is it provided by video, instruction manuals, webinars, or face-to-face training sessions? Each has their own benefits and costs. Make sure you’re happy with what these are.
  • As your organization grows, you may need new tools. While you might not need a performance management system right now, knowing that one is available if you need one in the future is certainly helpful. Ideally, systems will be modular so you’re not paying for tools that you don’t need.

 

TechTarget SearchFinancial Applications

@SearchFinApps

SearchFinancial Applications is TechTarget’s resource for IT pros working with financial management and HR systems.

Note: The below information is from A guide to workforce management solutions and software via SearchFinancial Applications.

“To avoid making costly mistakes when purchasing workforce management software, companies should remember that…”

It’s important to stay on top of the latest trends and best practices.

“Fast-changing labor and market trends are putting pressure on organizations to keep pace and manage their workforces as efficiently as possible.  For many companies, this has meant adopting workforce management software.

“The potential benefits of workforce management software include increased productivity, better labor planning, more efficient time and attendance tracking, and significant savings in both time and money.  But just like the underlying economic trends, the software tools are changing rapidly, and it behooves organizations to stay informed about the latest innovations, trends and best practices in workforce management technology.”

 

Samantha Williams

@servicejolt

Samantha joined the Jolt team in 2015 as a marketing assistant. She brought with her three years of medical billing knowledge from McKesson Corporation, including how to use an electronic health record (EHR) system and how to appeal to insurance companies for additional reimbursement. In her second year at McKesson, Samantha became a new hire trainer, and at one time oversaw 10 new hires in various stages of training.

Note: The information below is from Mobile Workforce Management (MWFM) Features: Collaboration via Jolt Consulting Group.

“Companies purchasing workforce management software solutions should consider…”

“Service managers hear it time and again — tribal knowledge needs to be captured. With experienced workers readying themselves for an exit from the workforce, newer, inexperienced workers may lose out on important, first-hand tribal knowledge.

“MWFM solutions offer collaboration tools including knowledge bases where organizations can place videos of older workers servicing a piece of equipment. Not only can videos walk technicians through various steps of any process, they can be training tools too, giving organizations something to show new technicians in preparation for sending them out in the field.

“Technicians don’t often have time to spend exchanging experience and knowledge with their fellow technicians. So discussions about new issues, new equipment, etc. can be infrequent. But if technicians can make a recording when they’re seeing something new or unusual, record their work and upload it to the MWFM knowledge base, that information becomes immediately available to every technician on the team.

“Beyond the obvious benefits of video sharing, technicians can also share other data. Diagrams and photos can also make tribal knowledge accessible to newer technicians, while also making it easier for service managers to create relevant training.”

 

Karen Schwartz

@karendschwartz

@crmsearchdotcom

Karen Schwartz has had a long career in tech writing, starting with a five-year stint at Government Computer News, working first as a news reporter and then as an associate editor, and then at Washington Technology, where she became the editor of a special section dedicated to the channel. After a few years, Schwartz left to pursue a freelance career, and has been writing for tech publications, trade publications, technology companies, and high-tech marketing firms ever since. Among other publications, Schwartz writes for CRMSearch.

Note: The following information is from Contact Center Workforce Management Solutions via CRMSearch.com.

“One of the primary challenges companies make when purchasing workforce management software, particularly for call center operations, is relying on manual documentation for forecasting…”

“Manual effort may have worked in a one or two channel world (say, phone and email), but it certainly doesn’t cut it in Contact Center 2.0 — a world where everything from social networking and chat to tweets and avatars may represent new and important channels for customers and call center agents.

“Additional communication channels, along with product, territory or customer type specialization by CSRs, result in much more complexity to the forecasting and scheduling equation. For example, call center managers that have visibility to clearly see that chat is usually busy between 6:00 PM and 7:00 PM but Facebook fan page activity doesn’t pick up until after 9:00 PM, can project the staffing for those work loads into the resource scheduling. Therefore, it’s more critical than ever before that contact centers put an effective mechanism in place for capturing and forecasting the volume of each contact method by time period to ensure having the right mix of agents with the right skill sets for each shift.

“It’s time, then, to put away those spreadsheets and other rudimentary attempts at forecasting and advance to a more sophisticated call center software automation tool that does what it takes. That includes the ability to forecast for specific events that can directly impact call volume, such as the launch of a new marketing campaign or a product recall. These call center software tools also should be able to handle historical trend analysis and the full panoply of agent skills that are used in various situations, along with the ability to schedule agents with various or multiple skills to different time slots.”

 

Steve Goldman and Don Giffels

@workforceinsight

Steve Goldman and Don Giffels are managing partners at Workforce Insight, a strategic workforce management consulting and implementation firm, based in Denver, Colorado.

Note: The following information is from Getting to know today’s workforce management tools: Trends and use cases via SearchSAP, TechTarget. Steve Goldman and Don Giffels host this two-part podcast.

“Companies purchasing workforce management software should avoid making the mistake of…”

Not considering all the possible features that go beyond standard time tracking and scheduling.

“As the recession rages on, companies are looking for ways to get more out of their number one, and most expensive, resource – their people. In that light, many companies are taking another look at their workforce management software.

“Companies aren’t just using workforce management tools to track employee hours anymore. Tools like labor analytics are helping companies better meet strategic objectives and increase revenue.”

 

@liveconx

@liveconx

@liveconx is the contact response center division of Christie Walther Communications.  Established in 1983 to provide conventional phone answering and call center services, today @liveconx is leading the transformation of conventional call center business into full, multi-channel “Contact Response Solution Center” offerings — providing important, value-added services for all the communications channels organizations use to engage with their customers, markets, suppliers and partners.

Note: The following information is from 7 Tips to Get the Most Out of Your Workforce Management Software via @liveconx.

“When dealing with workforce management software, it can be easy to…”

“Install and go without putting much thought into how or what you’re dealing with…

“Review your forecasting model. Nothing is static in this world, so your forecasting model shouldn’t be any different. Periodically run comparisons between different models. Use one forecast as a live model and the other as a test when working and simply measure the results when the day is done. If the test model outperforms the live model, then it may be time to make a switch.”

 

Chad Yee

@BiznessSoftware

Chad Yee is a Content Marketing & Social Media Associate at Business-Software.com.

Note: The following information is from IaaS, PaaS and SaaS: What’s the Difference? via Business-Software.com.

“One mistake companies make when purchasing workforce management software is…”

Not understanding which type of service will work best for your company and business model.

“Choosing which type of service is best for your company depends on many factors such as the size of your business, your business model and what service or product your business delivers to its customers…

“Each type of software delivery service is great in its own regard. As previously mentioned, a SaaS platform provides everything over the internet using the cloud — a great option if you seek an application that can run through the internet or a mobile app and enables your business to interact with the online world often. SaaS works well for email marketing, collaboration and healthcare-related software solutions.

“PaaS solutions give your developers the freedom to self-manage your applications rather than relying on the vendor for app maintenance. PaaS works well with developers working on a big project or with development projects in general.

“Lastly, an IaaS solution works as an outsourced cloud service that can be public or private. An IaaS solution works best with companies who don’t have the capital to buy hardware yet seek easy scalability and expect fast demand growth.”

 

Lauren Hasegawa

@lahasegawa

Lauren Hasegawa is a Structural Engineering graduate with a background in concrete restoration and is the Co-Founder of Bridgit. As a young engineer, Lauren has always had an interest in how new technologies can improve efficiency and productivity on construction projects. With this passion, she founded Bridgit in 2012. Bridgit focuses on developing mobile-first solutions that can help relieve on-site pain points, such as punch list management. Lauren is an active mentor to young women in engineering and a frequent speaker at local and national industry events focused on construction innovation.

Note: The following information is from Software Rollout Tips From the Field via Construction Executive (Twitter: @ConstructionMag).

“Before choosing a workforce management software solution, companies should consider…”

“Settling on a new software before determining how it will be rolled it out is risky. Because of the risks associated with ineffective software rollout, it is important to tackle both questions head-on before making a final software decision. This double-pronged approach is critical to new software success because a perfect solution that does not receive a proper rollout can be just as detrimental as not rolling anything out in the first place.”

 

Top 10 Reviews

@TopTenReviews

Top 10 Reviews offers expert reviews and comparisons on the latest software, web services, electronics, video games, music and movies – presented in a highly actionable format that make shopping easy.

Note: The following information is from 2015 Best Workforce Management Software: Reviews and Comparisons via Top 10 Reviews.

Choosing the right workforce software for your business is crucial to making sure you have the management solutions and features that will help your business thrive, and there are a handful of different things to consider before deciding which software is best for your business. You should consider the following four criteria before making a decision…”

Management Solutions. Workforce management systems include three major management solutions that take a lot of work out of managing your employees. The scheduling, forecasting and budgeting management solutions help you make sure you have the right number of employees in house on any given day to be successful. You can forecast the amount of employees you need in house to handle customer demands on a daily basis, and you can handle employee scheduling requests easily and without headache.

Ease of Use. Just because workforce software can be quite complex and handle a lot of solutions for your business doesn’t mean it has to be difficult to use and navigate. It’s important that the software is easy for you and your team of employees to use. Some workforce management software has easy-to-learn programs and includes modern, simple interfaces that you and your employees will welcome.”

 

Brian Westfall

@SoftwareAdvice

Brian Westfall is a Market Research Associate with Software Advice. He covers the human resources (HR) market, focusing primarily on payroll, learning management systems, and video interviewing software. He holds a B.S. in Marketing and Economics from Trinity University. Brian worked in online copywriting and marketing before joining Software Advice in August 2014. 

When he’s not researching the latest in human resources technology, Brian can most likely be found behind a drum set or playing with his dog.

Note: The following information is from Compare Workforce Management Software Systems via SoftwareAdvice.com.

“One thing many companies fail to consider before choosing workforce management software is…”

Consolidation. Larger workforce software developers have been acquiring best-of-breed solutions as a means of expanding the breadth of their integrated suites. For buyers, this means increased functionality and integration with the rest of your HR system. Buyers are able to tap into a larger resources, fully automating their processes and maximizing efficiency. On the other hand, best-of-breeds have worked hard to offer competitive alternatives to buyers who aren’t interested in implementing an entirely new system. Be sure to weigh your options carefully to ensure you find the best solution for your needs.”

 

Dave Foxall

@HRlabdotcom

Dave Foxall is a freelance writer living in Barcelona who works with clients around the world. Foxall has written for sites such as HRLab and HRMSWorld.

Note: The information below is from Workforce Management Software: 5 Pre-Selection Questions via HRLab.com.

“Before choosing a workforce management software solution, companies should first determine…”

Whether an add-on or best-of-breed solution is right for your needs.

“Most organizations considering workforce management software will likely already have some form of enterprise-wide business software in place (such as ERP, CRM, etc.) and therefore will likely have the option of purchasing an accompanying add-on module from the same vendor to accommodate the workforce management application needs. The advantages with this option include an obviously shorter selection process, a pre-integrated workforce software solution and an established relationship with the vendor. However, some analysts offer a warning on this choice. For example, Nucleus Research’s David O’Connell cautions that, ‘If your payroll environment is even moderately complex, then you should go best of breed.’ Factors such as multiple unions, or a cross-border workforce, or a variety of pay grades can require a specialist vendor, focused on shifting requirements and regulations. Best of breed business software solutions normally retain greater industry domain knowledge and can channel that expertise into deeper and more flexible application software. The choice often comes to more feature-rich and flexible application software from a best-of-breed vendor versus a quicker implementation and single vendor accountability from an enterprise suite vendor.”

 

Pam Baker

@bakercom1

@SmBizComputing

Pam Baker is a noted business analyst, freelance writer and journalist, author of several books/ebooks, and member of the National Press Club and Internet Press Guild (IPG). She regularly contributes to publications such as Small Business Computing.

Note: The following information is from 5 Top Reasons You Need Workforce Management Software via Small Business Computing.

“One mistake companies make when choosing workforce management software is…”

Not understanding that the productivity offered by any software solution is dependent on how employees adapt and use it.

“Like most business technology tools, workforce management software is designed to improve productivity. However, how you wield it has as much to do with productivity as the software does.

“’From my experience, you can use workforce management software to restrict employees into doing their jobs, or you can use it to help employees excel in their jobs by adding an element of accountability,’ says Robbie Sherrard, a Web developer and founder of Checklist, an app for real estate brokers and agents.

“’My advice is to be sure your employees or agents understand the value the software brings to them, and reward them for using it effectively.’

“In other words, if all you’re using the software for is to crack the whip, the software may backfire on you. Employees will likely try to game the system to avoid punishment. Sure, you can — and should — dismiss workers who don’t produce at the expected level. Just be careful not to use this software to drive good employees to produce beyond human capabilities. If you do, your best workers may permanently leave your employ.”

 

3 Comments

3 thoughts on “25 Experts Discuss the Biggest Mistakes Companies Make When Buying Workforce Management Software”

  1. Great article Dana! Really helpful for companies/firms to avoid before buying a workforce software. Thanks a lot for providing this much important information.

  2. Hi everyone! For time management we use CrocoTime software in our company.

    The key advantage of CrocoTime ( https://crocotime.com/en/ ) over other time trackers is a much higher statistical accuracy.

    High accuracy is achieved by storing a computer usage statistics for each working day (or any working period). Each employee not only can enter the information of his tasks, but is able to see what programs and websites he used every moment of the day. All this information is collected automatically based on windows’ titles and names of documents.

    It is very convenient and greatly improves the accuracy of time tracking. If you forgot to track you are able to see which documents, programs, and websites you visited today or at any other time. It will be easy to remember when and what you were doing, and properly assess your workload!

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