Implementing a new HCM system is a tricky time for most businesses. On the one hand, it’s exciting to be within reach of solving some of the time-consuming manual processes that may have been dragging your HR department down. On the other hand, transitioning to a new system creates the potential for logistical hiccups that can slow the process to a crawl, cost more money, and create even more frustration.
The solution for most businesses is to partner with third-party HCM consultants. They are experts in your new Dayforce or UKG system and experts in keeping projects like these on track. Here’s how a dedicated project manager (PM) can change the game for your HCM implementation.
Why not manage the project internally?
Many companies approach HCM implementation or system optimizations with the best of intentions. Who knows what the company needs and how your current system works better than your existing HR staff? Save time, keep it in-house, save money. The logic makes sense, but the reality usually doesn’t bear fruit.
Internal HR staff have a valuable perspective, and their input is crucial to the project’s success. However, these employees already have full-time jobs that are integral to the smooth functioning of the company’s human resources department. Meanwhile, project management for HCM implementation is also a full-time job. Therefore, asking HR staff to do double-duty by balancing their day-to-day tasks while simultaneously overseeing a complex transition with many moving parts is a recipe for burnout.
Outsourced HCM consultants increase efficiency on every level
Instead of saddling internal teams with a colossal project that can quickly lead to overwhelm, partner with third-party HCM consultants who are professionals at transitions like these.
Here are some factors that keep your projects on schedule and within budget.
- Dedicated project manager. HCM consultants assign at least one experienced project manager to oversee your implementation. This single point of contact creates clarity for your teams and ensures everyone follows the same playbook from the same lead.
- Precise requirements. Every HCM project should begin with the end in mind. However, determining your exact end goal can pose a challenge. PMs thoroughly interview everyone who will ultimately have any involvement with your new HCM software to determine what they are looking to achieve. This means conducting detailed stakeholder interviews and sitting with the people who use the software daily to understand their objectives and existing pain points.
For many companies, the initial challenge is not the real problem—it’s only an indicator of a deeper issue. A seasoned project manager knows how to uncover the true business challenge and will help implement the right HCM configurations to provide valuable, lasting change.
- System expertise. HCM systems are powerful but complex. When configured to reach their full potential, these platforms can unlock an entirely new level of efficiency and insights for businesses. However,it’s also possible to overlook their full capabilities.Companies often tell us they “don’t know what they don’t know.” HCM consultants know what’s possible from your systems and are professionals at “connecting the dots” to help you get there.
- Extensive pre-planning. The success of your HCM implementation is directly tied to how much pre-planning takes place. Your PM will outline the true scope of your project and how it fits into your existing company processes and overall business flow. They’ll examine your company’s other significant initiatives, your available resources, any competing projects, and what your teams foresee as inhibitors to your desired outcomes.
- Establishing a realistic schedule. Most schedules for HCM implementation are on the ambitious side. While it’s understandable that businesses want to complete their transition as soon as possible, failure to create a realistic, achievable schedule before beginning the project can cause serious timeline creep. Project managers determine a practical starting point based on your current circumstances and ensure everyone responsible for owning any task within the timeline has visibility into it before the project gets underway.
- Extensive communication. Keeping all interested parties in the loop is more than being professionally polite—it’s crucial to the project’s success. A PM is the central communication hub for all stakeholders, giving everyone the proper information at the right time. They are also responsible for tracking down hard-to-reach individuals to make sure their lack of involvement doesn’t throw a wrench in the process down the line.
HCM consultants use regular progress meetings, emailed status reports, and comprehensive project management software to keep everyone informed. As a result, company leaders appreciate seeing forward movement. In addition, everyone involved in the day-to-day transition always know what has already been accomplished and what’s coming next.
HCM Consultants as dedicated advocates
If you are already committed to working with the team from your HCM provider for implementation, it may be a good idea to bring on third-party HCM consultants to advocate for your interests. The dedicated project manager will act as an extension of your team, handling project management duties so your in-house staff doesn’t have to and prompting your HCM provider to install your system to align with your business objectives.
A smooth transition for everyone
An old joke goes, “How do you eat an elephant?” Answer: “One bite at a time.” The same is true for HCM implementation. Sweeping projects like this can get overwhelming fast if not kept in check. Turning to experienced HCM consultants means working with a professional project manager dedicated to seeing your project through to success.
Project managers don’t rule with iron fists—they’re here to ensure everyone gets their part done correctly and on time, enabling your company to undertake a massive transition one small bite at a time.
Contact the HCM experts at Seequelle today to make your system implementation or optimization more manageable.