Following are some common consulting areas where we have focused in delivering added value services for users of Sage. The following list is the result of a collaborative effort among several longtime Timberline consultants.
1. Process Walks
We’ve heard it called “process improvement” and also “discovery.” Call it what you like, either way, there are tremendous benefits resulting from a deep-dive into your company’s processes. Finding and resolving redundant data entry, improving process efficiency, finding more efficient ways to use software, and finding unused features in software are just a few benefits you’ll realize from this must-have effort.
2. Billing Points
You have agreed-upon billing points with your customers and your contracts. Are they well communicated to your staff? Does your software trigger those events and even automate the generation of the invoices? Increased cash flow, improved collections, and improved customer relationships are a few mission critical impacts that result from building your billing points into your processes, software, and resulting data. Be sure this is built in to your system!
3. Actionable Information
Just 25 years ago a 3-inch stack of green bar-paper was an acceptable report. Executives accepted that they would have to “find” what they were looking for and then act on that information. Today, your information system’s resources need to be asking you “what are you looking for” and delivering JUST that information as exception data. E-mail, flash reporting, and even exception information that bypasses executives and goes directly to those that ultimately act on the data is making companies more effective in using information every day.
4. Release Notes
Your software vendor is continuously improving the feature set to provide value to you. Read update release notes and determine if new features can benefit your company. Your vendor has product management teams watching your industry and providing new and improved tools to help you be competitive in your market!
5. Consultants vs. Product Specialists
Be aware of the difference! Product Specialists are well versed within the parameters of your software’s feature set and can help you use those features effectively. Consultants SHOULD BE focused on your business and what you’re trying to accomplish. Your software is an important part of the puzzle, and your consultant has many other tools available to help you achieve the desired business impact. The most important asset your consultant should bring to the table? Experience!
6. Too Much Focus on Your System
Is your system one of the day-to-day topics of discussion? If yes, this MUST CHANGE! Your competition is discussing business factors that will contribute to profits and growth, including customer service, backlog and resource planning, and the pipeline. If you and your staff are spending too much time focused on your system it’s time for an assessment. Can the system fit your business so you can focus on what’s important?
7. Operations vs. Accounting
Construction companies like yours that have figured out how to bridge this gap have both sides of the house on the same team. Operations, of course, are the ones that are making the money. Once change management and forecasts are done effectively in the job cost accounting system, the accounting side of the house can provide accurate financial statements. At that point the dust clears and visibility with a WIP report and working capital information becomes crystal clear. Your system has the features so that you can generate this information accurately and in a timely fashion.
During our 20+ years as presenters at TUG conferences, we’ve come to understand a lot of the common issues that companies have with their implementations. So, we’ve made a series of short videos that address these issues.
Find helpful Sage 300 (Timberline) resources at the OnPoint Sage 300 training library.
TUG is a great user group that is committed to helping you get more from your software (we know because we are on the TUG board!). For more info, visit tugweb.com.
If your implementation is going off track, we’d be happy to discuss your situation for free. Just call us at (877) 213-3860 or email email@example.com.