05 October 2017

How to Convince Your Boss to Upgrade to Construction Accounting Software

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Maybe you’re sold on the idea of finally upgrading to construction accounting software — but maybe your boss isn’t. Or maybe you’re just not sure how to bring it up. That’s OK. They might be viewing things from a different angle. So how do you see eye-to-eye on this issue? Well, we imagine your boss would have some tips for you . . .

Note: Your boss did not write the following article — but they probably could have!

 

I hear you. Literally, I hear you from my office cursing at your computer right now. And it’s not like I’m not listening when you tell me how much of your day is lost on AIA billings or certified payroll or picking out data from spreadsheets.

But try to understand it from where I sit. There are only so many ways cash comes in and thousands of ways for it to leave. Every week I’m inundated with expense requests — I’m just trying to make sure our business stays healthy and profitable. The reality is, I don’t work with our accounting software day in and day out, and I don’t see everything that’s needed to make it work for our daily operations.

But we can still have a conversation. And I do have a few thoughts I may never have shared with you.

Let’s Talk About Some of the Day-To-Day Costs of Using a System That Doesn’t Fit Us.

If there’s one cost I know all about, it’s the one the sales reps quoted. So if the decision presented to me is between spending money and not, guess what I’m going to choose. But there are other costs that we can talk about — like the costs of continuing to use software that doesn’t work as well for our business as it should.

Those might be labor costs from inefficient manual processing. They might be potential data entry errors that could cost us big without enough checks and balances in our current software. But it could also be the opportunity costs of not being able to take on new billings or government contracts. Our small-business accounting software could be keeping us small, and our spreadsheet system might be spreading our back office too thin. What do you think?

Share With Me How It Can Save Us Money!

Remind me. How many labor hours did it take to track down and fix that spreadsheet error because our software doesn’t job cost and we have to do duplicate data entry? What does that amount to in terms of payroll? That’s something that we can talk about.

Or you could compare how much time it takes to put together an AIA application versus this new package you like so much. Then, pitch how the company better can use the hours we’d save. In other words, let’s look at some numbers to see how all those features you’ve been talking about will really benefit the company.

Tell Me About How This Can Make My Job Easier.

We can both remember when I’ve asked for a report and you said, “But that’ll take me at least a couple of hours — if I drop everything I’m doing!” Of course from my perspective, those are hours well-spent. But have you mentioned that there’s a way that I could actually get that report instantly? Or that if I wanted to bring in even more kinds of data and break down costs by project manager, I could easily design my own report in minutes? These items would probably get my attention!

Let’s Talk About Making The Change Manageable.

Most people are hesitant about change. There’s risk, there’s a learning curve, and there’s all sorts of uncertainty. Help ease my anxieties by sharing your ideas for making the transition work.

What are our target time tables? How are we going to handle training? Tell me about the kind of implementation plan the vendor has. Tell me what they’re going to do to help ensure our success if we’re going to commit to a big change like this.

Reassure me about the kind of support we’re going to continue to receive once the ink has dried and the initial training is completed. It might feel like we’ve talked this issue to death, but let’s make sure we’ve covered the things that are most key from where I sit:

  • current costs
  • projected savings
  • how it can help me manage the company
  • how we can have a smooth transition

It might take time. It’ll be a process. But this might get you started on initiating some helpful conversations with me in order to help me catch the vision of how this can have a big value for our company.

P.S. Don’t forget to show me how easily I can see if for myself. Send me this link to a self-guided online demo!