Suppose your current software is outdated, slow, and behind the times. Purchasing new software, whether off-the-shelf or custom, can be expensive. So convincing management or other co-workers that it’s time to upgrade may be difficult.
This could be because of many things but it usually boils down to price. Along with this, many co-workers may be resistant when it comes to learning new software, perhaps seeing this as more work in the short term. What many don’t realise is that it could bring better work efficiency and less hassle.
To help convince your team that it’s time to update or purchase new custom software, we’ve put together this article of tips and information.
Include co-workers and management in the process
Convincing your team that it’s time to upgrade is challenging. To illustrate the benefits of upgrading, you should include your team throughout the process.
The more your team and co-workers feel invested in the switch, the more likely they are to support it. Perhaps pitch the benefits before any potential downsides (like maintenance, teething phases, etc), and how these new changes will impact them. For instance, improved automation, increased workplace efficiency, and getting to leave the office before 5 pm on a Friday.
Organisation is key
It’s all very well pitching the idea to your co-workers or management team. However, organisation is key as this will make or break the final decision. Begin your research early and prepare answers to various questions, including the cost of the new software, the benefits, potential downsides, how long it would take to install, who you’re going to purchase it from, etc.
Essentially, you need to do your research and be organised about it. Perhaps share a handout with your team prior to the pitch. Or send an email out informing co-workers of what to expect if you did make the switch.
Combine this organisation and research with involvement as this is likely to gain the attention and support you need from your co-workers.
Refine your pitch for every department
If pitching your idea of new or custom software to various departments at different times, you should refine your delivery for each pitch. For example, when pitching to the finance department, mention how switching will help save money in the long-run. Also mention the overall costs, compare with previous costs and how this will help the business, as long as this holds true.
Refining your pitch is key. Not only will it show that you’ve gone to more effort, but you’re able to talk to each department directly. This is how you get people to listen and buy into your ideas. Avoid using complex geekspeak and keep your explanations to the point and straightforward to avoid losing their interest.
Provide feedback and listen to your co-workers
Throughout the process of convincing and pitching the idea of new software, remember to listen to what they say and provide feedback.
For example, one colleague may ask a question regarding cost. Instead of shutting them down, really listen to their concerns and provide an answer. If you don’t know the answer, ensure you’ll get back to them as soon as possible. And then do so.
Remember: the more co-workers you convince that an upgrade is necessary, the more likely it is that management will also agree, allowing you to make the transition to the new software.
Create a compelling argument
When you first pitch or mention the idea of new software, your boss or co-workers are likely to be fairly busy. It’s therefore essential to create compelling arguments for the change.
For instance, the new software may include automated processes, cutting work in half and freeing up more time for more important jobs. If you can create a compelling argument that solves problems in the workplace that your co-workers and boss are currently facing, then you’re on your way.
We all love a graph or infographic to convey hard-to-grasp stats. Stats and figures help us quantify the benefits of upgrading to new or custom software. If stakeholders can clearly understand the numbers and how this is likely to affect business, then more of them are likely to buy into your idea.
You can use stats from other businesses, estimate figures yourself, or use a combination of both. However you do it, ensure it’s accurate and visually appealing. Perhaps use a graph as well, a great tool to display how the new software will impact the business.
Finally, it’s important to quantify change. Let your co-workers and employees know the current struggles and pain everyone experiences with the old software. For example, perhaps communication between clients is currently suffering or admin is time consuming.
This could be due to any number of reasons, but may be solved with new software which will centralise data and make it more easily accessible. If co-workers share these experiences, then this will get them on board, too, solving their pain and daily hassles with the new software idea.
Convincing your colleagues and management team that you need to upgrade or purchase custom software can be difficult. People are resistant to change, so you need to create a compelling argument. Be sure to use stats, do your research and remain organised, and keep your co-workers in the loop
Once you’ve convinced your team to invest in custom software contact our software consultant. We are a Peterborough-based software house, but we are happy to provide service to the whole of the UK.