Every so often, clients will come to us frustrated with their Professional Services Automation software (PSA) and are ready to throw it out of the office window.
What they thought would ease their project management woes led to an avalanche of systems. It turns out the PSA they selected isn’t flexible enough, and so they have to invest in even more tools to get everything done.
Poor-fit tools leave organizations with a cobbled-together approach comprising multiple tools and solutions where their PSA starts to resemble a Frankenstein monster. They find themselves with a separate tool for everything—one for project planning, another for managing resources, another for HR to file leave and vacation days, another to track time worked, and a different one to run payroll and send invoices to clients.
Argh! It all becomes too tedious and complicated to keep up with.
If you’re in the same (or a similar) boat, frustrated with your current situation and want to figure out if there is a better option, this article will help! We’ll help you understand the key features you should look out for in your PSA solution. You’ll also learn why making the switch to Mission Control may be the relief you’ve been looking for.
Does Your Professional Services Automation Tool Have These Key Features?
Having used your existing tool kit, you know what you’re lacking. Now that you’re in the market to upgrade your PSA solution, you don’t want to repeat the same mistakes. This time you want to ensure you’re investing in a truly useful tool that does what you need and is embraced by your team. Here’s what to look out for:
1. Quick project planning and setup
A successful project begins with proper planning. You want a PSA tool that makes project setup and planning as simple and efficient as possible. It should have features that allow you to manage every aspect of your project plan, including:
- Creating and sharing project deliverables
- Adding relevant stakeholders and contributors to the project
- Creating and assigning tasks
- Setting deadlines
- Managing time and project budget
- Generating invoices.
A robust PSA should also allow you to clone previous projects, eliminating the repetitive process of building new structures with every new project. Better yet, you should be able to automate this process to save time and get other things done.
2. Resource management
Resources are a vital part of any project, and having the right resources when needed goes a long way in achieving project goals.
Your PSA should have features that make it easy to view, manage and assign resources across the organization. Proper resource management helps you assign the right resources to the right projects at the right time.
Regarding your human resources specifically, your PSA should also be able to track billable and nonbillable hours, delegate workloads, and stay abreast of unavailable resources throughout the project lifecycle.
3. Expense management
Over 45% of projects fail due to budget overruns. Proper planning and good software can help reduce cost overruns. A good PSA should give you excellent visibility into how stakeholders spend money throughout the life of a project.
Furthermore, your PSA software should be able to integrate with your accounting tools so that you can manage your billing and invoicing in one centralized repository. This way, you’ll be able to handle revenue recognition and analyze your project profitability right from within your PSA.
4. Time management
It’s crucial to have visibility into where and how human resources spend their time within a project. The more time people spend on work that matters, the faster the project will be completed reducing the chances of going above the project budget or exceeding the deadline.
5. Reporting tools
How well or poorly did a project perform? You’ll never know if you don’t have a way to collect project data. A PSA solution with easy-to-use reporting tools helps you pull insights from completed projects and apply the learnings to future projects.
6. Customer relationship management
Customer engagement is crucial to a project’s success. You want to be able to update your clients regularly and also have an avenue for sending and receiving feedback to and from your clients. That’s why your PSA tool must have a customer relationship management feature. This feature makes it easy to send proposals, communicate project progress, send invoices, and everything else that involves the client.
Business forecasting allows you to look at past projects’ performance and identify any issues that may have curtailed success. By seeing what negatively impacted your projects in the past, you can easily anticipate bottlenecks and prevent them from occurring in future projects.
A reliable PSA tool collects your project data and stores it in a centralized hub. You can easily access this data long after you’ve delivered your projects and use it to forecast outcomes for the current project and predict future projects.
8. Ongoing support
While a good PSA should be easy to use, you’ll need onboarding and support when you start using it. Find out what level of service or support you can expect from your PSA vendor. Ensure that’s enough to help you implement and maximize the use of your software.
9 Reasons to Choose Mission Control for Your PSA Needs
Are you ready to ditch your multiple tools in favor of just one convenient tool? Here’s why every business needs a comprehensive and flexible project management tool like Mission Control:
Say goodbye to using a gazillion tools to keep everyone in the organization happy. Mission Control is one of the most flexible PSAs in the market. The software can be adapted to different teams in different departments. You will no longer need separate software for HR, sales, or marketing teams. Our team can also help you customize the tool so it works exactly how you need it to.
Let’s talk about cars for a second. A Ferrari is a great car. Obviously! It goes super fast, looks great and well, who wouldn’t like to own a Ferrari? But then, when you need to make a quick trip to the supermarket, you don’t really want to take the Ferrari and risk bumps and dents. So you opt for your less prestigious, more practical, probably also more kid-friendly car.
Similarly, Mission Control may not be a Ferrari but it certainly is the practical solution that makes your day-to-day life more manageable. With a single tool, you can plan your projects, manage your resources, manage billing, keep track of project expenses, assign tasks and deadlines, communicate with teams and clients instantly no matter where they are, and so much more.
Mission Control’s open architecture, makes it much easier to customize than many other tools. Mission Control has all the features you need to meet your business needs. Teams in different departments can use this single tool to manage individual projects and to collaborate with each other.
4. Easy integration and implementation
Our project management software is intuitive and easy to use. It considers all the ways a project can be run and then offers the solutions that support them. Additionally, it easily integrates with Salesforce and other business tools that you might already be using. This allows you to bring all your existing tools into one place.
You don’t need any expertise to start using Mission Control nor wait around for an expert to make changes to the tool. We offer a self-serve learning portal so customers can learn exactly how to maximize the tool’s capabilities for themselves.
5. Simplified project planning
Use the Project Management Command Center to plan new projects quickly. The Launch Pad feature makes generating a new project framework easier by simultaneously adding corresponding milestones, risks, issues, assignees, and more.
Mission Control makes project planning faster and more efficient through automation. Got a new project coming up? Clone previous project templates to create a new project plan.
6. Better resource planning
Are your resource management and capacity planning separated from your project management? Mission Control brings everything together and makes resource management agile through various built-in features.
The Resource Assignment Wizard and Scheduler allow you to identify where there’s capacity and then schedule smartly to ensure you have the right resources whenever you need them. You can reschedule and reassign tasks as necessary.
7. Automated invoicing
Forget following up with your team members daily for their timesheets or having to constantly calculate billable hours at the end of the month when invoicing your clients. Mission Control makes it possible to automate the billing and invoice process for organizations.
You can automate one-off invoices as well as more complex recurring billing cycles. Add automated reminders instead of doing manual follow-ups. This will encourage clients to pay on time.
8. Accurate project financials
Staying abreast of your project’s financial health is vital for reducing budget overruns. Use the Revenue Recognition feature to gain insight into revenue realized throughout a project’s duration. Here, you can view your scheduled revenue and cost, the actual revenue and cost, earned value and projected income and expenses. The feature also offers a profit and loss overview and other financial information.
All this data is stored within Mission Control, and project managers can use it for planning and forecasting finances for future projects with similar deliverables.
9. Instant communication
Communication is an essential part of managing projects. Mission Control has an in-built communication tool that makes collaboration between teams easier. All stakeholders, including clients, can access project information and share it with other members within Mission Control. This eliminates the need for a third-party communication tool.
No More Frankenstein PSAs = Improved Productivity and Lower Costs
Whether you need basic project management or advanced Professional Services Automation software that brings various teams together, Mission Control is the solution your organization needs. No more Frankenstein. No more cobbling together multiple solutions to get the results you need. Now you have one tool to rule them all.
You won’t have to keep moving from one tool to another or lose time and energy pulling things out of one system to use in another. Mission Control will bring everything together in one place for a more streamlined approach. Ultimately, you’ll witness improved organizational efficiency and more productive teams. And to top it all of, you’ll save money as you’ll no longer be paying for multiple tools—just one!
Sign up to Mission Control, get all the features straight out of the box, and start immediately taking your project management to the next level!
Request a demo today to see how Mission Control can help meet your business’ project management needs.