Last week, we talked about making the move to a digital system one process at a time. This got us thinking, what other obstacles are there to making the transition to a digital FM platform? One of the chief objections we hear when we talk to prospects about implementing envVisual is that there are too many people to get approval from before any significant change can be brought about in the way you manage processes. Beyond the monetary investment, you’re forced to invest your precious time, energy, and attention to figuring out which system fits best and then demonstrating value potential to all the people that the system will serve: the people using the facilities, the team you manage, and most importantly, the budgeters upstairs.
Getting buy-in to digitize your FM processes from your consituents can be a challenge. Many will react with the “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” mentality, but it’s important to counter that mentality with one that says “if it could be better, why isn’t it?” People are naturally averse to change, but change in this context can drastically improve the process that keep your facility running smoothly. Putting a digital system in place can reduce response- and down-time when issues occur, can empower those in your facility to report issues more easily and clearly, and can make work easier for everybody involved in facility upkeep, which can drastically reduce costs and inefficiencies.
For the higher-ups, the objection is usually money. As we mentioned last week, it’s possible to implement a digital system without breaking the bank and spending all of your annual budget in one fell swoop. The crucial methodology behind conserving your budget is identifying the software that will do only the things you need, as opposed to large software suites that do everything you could ever need, but also cost everything you could ever spend. Moreover, smaller software companies can often give you greater personalized attention, meaning the value proposition, implementation, and training will be tailored for you and the needs of your team.
There’s one final constituent whose buy-in is crucial to initiating the transition into digital facilities management: yours. When confronting the opportunity (or need) to cross the digital divide, it can feel risky and uncomfortable. Your buy-in is perhaps the hardest to get, because if the implementation fails, or the software doesn’t live up to its promise, or something goes wrong, fault falls on your shoulders, and the fear of that can keep us attached to the traditional processes with which we are comfortable. What you can’t forget, however, is that with risk, comes reward. Do your homework and know what the software will look like in the field. Understand how it will improve your processes, and then quantify that over the span of a year or two. Think of the money, time, energy, and hassle that will be avoided down the road. Trust yourself to make the right decision for your facility, and stand by it. The rewards will come later on, when your old processes are exposed for how inefficient and unreliable they were.
Whatever solution you choose should optimize your processes, deliver business intelligence, and reduce overhead costs in the long term. Buy-in can be hard to achieve, but getting to the proverbial thumbs-up from the rest of your team will demonstrate initiative, drive, and competency that the status quo cannot match.
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