Fund Management Software Warning Signs
By Jill Montera
Okay, one last time on my soapbox and I promise I’ll give it a rest for a while. So we’ve talked about the initial stages of a fund management software implementation and how to ensure that goes smoothly. And we’ve talked about the middle stages and steps you can take during that stage to improve your effectiveness with the system. But what if things haven’t gone well? What if you get to the middle stage and you did the initial stage wrong? And how do you even know if you’ve done it wrong? Lets talk about when things go bad.
The first metric I would look at when assessing how well you’re doing is system usage. If your system is Salesforce-based, any admin can see how often everyone is logging in and using the system. I’m sure other non-Salesforce systems offer a similar feature. If you’re seeing significant or steady declines in the amount of times people are logging in, it’s time to start digging into why that is the case.
Another bad sign is if people start storing data in other places instead of storing it in your system. One of the big reasons companies start looking into fund management software in the first place is to move away from storing data in spreadsheets or other offline places that quickly become inaccurate or redundant. If you’ve been using a system for a year or so and notice that people are abandoning the process and starting to store data offline because “its easier” or “that’s just how I’ve always done it,” you likely have a problem that is going to be more and more costly and time-consuming to fix the longer it goes on.
Revisit your shared commitment
So what can you do if things are going poorly in the middle stage? I think the first step is to start broadly and revisit the business reasons that led you and your team to implement software in the first place. Admittedly, the efficiency and insight that you gain with the right fund management software can require a lot of up-front effort, but that efficiency and insight can also make you a better fund manager and can set you apart from your competition. If you stress the gains that can be made with the right software system and focus on “the why,” your team is more likely to persevere through the parts that seem tedious.
Retraining (or training for the first time)
Retraining can be another great way to hit pause and get everyone back on track. Of course, most training takes place during implementation when lots of new information is getting thrown around so the likelihood that everyone could use a refresher after a year or so is pretty high. Also, there are likely to be new team members who never got training in the first place and were not part of the initial decision, nor do they clearly understand the shared commitment you’ve made. And finally, if you decided against doing training during implementation for reasons of cost or time, of course its never too late to start.
This post is another installment in our series on best practices during the various stages of your software life cycle. Read the first post on What to Focus on During your Fund Management Software Implementation here.