More and more property management companies are realizing that in order to stay competitive in this highly competitive industry, they need a complete end-to-end software solution that will help them to manage and optimize every aspect of the business.
However, the prospect of implementing such a change can be daunting for some. For starters there is the initial investment in the software solution, accompanied by the fact that people are often resistant to change — especially when they do not have a full understanding of how that change will benefit them.
The key is to educate your team about the benefits from the beginning and then provide an effective training plan that will get them feeling familiar and comfortable with using the system, so that you can maximize the return on investment.
Step 1: Answer the question of “why?”
The first step in maximizing the ROI of a new software solution is to get employees on board and excited about how it will improve their daily lives and overall job performance. This can be done through a presentation or a live demo that highlights 3 – 5 functions that will make a significant impact in terms of time and aggravation saved as well as the quality of work that can be produced. Such a presentation can also include actual results achieved by industry peers, so that the audience does not feel that it is just empty promises.
Step 2: Provide adequate training
An ideal scenario would be for all users of a given set of functions to directly participate in the training session(s) for those functions, rather than knowledge being passed on from a single trained person. Over the years Netintegrity’s product implementation team has developed a training schedule which its clients have found to be very effective.
Training sessions are scheduled in manageable segments so that participants have a chance to digest what is learned and do not feel overwhelmed. Trainees are also given access to a test environment, where they can practice using the features and functions of the software with their own data, to make training more relevant for them and so that they can address any issues that may arise.
Step 3: Offer incentives
We’ve all heard that a little friendly competition is good way to motivate people. So why not turn training and ongoing use of the software into a game, offering redeemable points that can be collected for participating in initial and ongoing training sessions as well as for regular use of the system to complete daily tasks? The incentive does not have to be high-value, as long as the “competition” is positioned as being fun.
Step 4: Never stop learning
Regular ongoing training sessions are just as important to maximizing the ROI of your software as is the initial training program. For starters, we all forget things over time and could use a refresher, especially when it comes to features that we do not use often. Then there is the inevitability of employee turnover. When people leave, knowledge walks out the door with them, and new hires should have the same opportunity to thoroughly learn the system and make maximum use of its features. And most of all, the developers of quality property management software are continually upgrading the system and adding new features that respond to the evolving needs of the industry and its customers. So it’s important to be aware of and take advantage of the latest new features.
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