Any sort of change within an organization can seem daunting – especially when it involves large investments of money and a high learning curve such as purchasing and implementing a new accounting and inventory management system. However, if one thing is inevitable in the world, it is change, and with the right tools and attitude, a major organizational change can have very positive results. In the business world this is especially true for small companies who have been continuously growing and must embrace the changes that come with growth. You can either move forward or risk losing it all.
Investing in a new accounting and inventory management system, although seemingly expensive in terms of money and resources, is an investment that will be worth it in order to achieve future growth and profits. Oftentimes, the reluctance to change only stems from the unprecedented effects it will have on the company and not the actual investment of money and resources. But as technology continues to change and develop, more than ever before, implementing new software within your business has the potential to generate high ROI far into the future.
Below is a summary of the steps involved in a successful software change.
1. Think Why
Knowing why new accounting and inventory management software needs to be implemented is a key factor in the success of the implementation – why current processes are not sufficient and why there needs to be changes to current reporting procedures. It is important that all employees know what the goals of the proposed changes are and how they will be valuable to the employees and company as a whole. Specifically this could mean reducing data entry errors with accounting software, or reducing stock outs with inventory management software. In order to fully understand the benefits one must look at the big picture and over-arching reason for implementing a new software system. If all employees within the organization understand and agree with the reasons, than the implementation and transition to using the new software will be much smoother.
2. Think Long Term
Briefly mentioned above, looking at the big picture and long-term benefits of changing software will help confirm why it needed to be changed in the first place. Focus on the final outcomes vs. immediate impacts. Focus on how, with new accounting and inventory management software, your company will benefit by being able to do things such as; reduce accounting errors, better track products, efficiently manage inventory and serve more customers. Identify the benefits the software will have on each aspect of the company immediately and into the future. This will help provide a purpose for the new software.
3.Think Short Term
Although seemingly contradictory to the factor mentioned before, this simply means to not get overwhelmed with the details by instead focusing on one task at a time. Have a plan and follow it. Design a schedule for each stage of the process. Begin with the software search, then the proposal and sale stage and lastly the implementation stage. Knowing what each stage encompasses and the resources that need to be dedicated to each stage will make the process easier.
4. Think Same
Although implementing new accounting and inventory management software can seem like a huge change, it is important to focus on what isn’t going to change in order to realize that many things, in fact, won’t be changing. What your company actually does will remain the same with just new processes in place to compliment this. The people working in your organization will remain the same – they will now just be better equipped to accomplish their tasks. The location and infrastructure of your company will remain the same with minor changes and updates that will keep the company forward looking with modern equipment. For example, even though your warehouse will remain the same, new inventory management software will make it easier to fulfill and track orders.
5. Think Principles
Processes, technologies, and priorities might change but the underlying principles, values and culture that exist within your company will not. If you find yourself caught up in all the changes happening, take a moment to focus on the underlying principles that make your company successful and how the changes will benefit these. As a company that prides itself on customer service – will the new software help manage CRM better? As a company that is known for fast and reliable delivery – will the new software better keep track of inventory and shipments? As a company known for providing products worldwide – will the new software ensure exchange rates and different currencies are being properly accounted for? New accounting and inventory management software does not have to change current principles or practices – just improve upon them.
Remember, investing in a new accounting and inventory management system can be overwhelming, but it can also be exciting, as it will allow your company to grow into the future. Change is inevitable so the best way to deal with it is to fully understand what it means for your company and follow the steps listed above.