Software Implementation Plan and Project Management steps for Nonprofits

Project Management Tips for Nonprofit Software Implementation

At Omatic, we are constantly working with nonprofits to implement new software and processes. It’s one of our specialties and we love it! Since we are always working with people getting ready to start something new, a question we often hear is: “What can I do to prepare for my software implementation?”

As a project manager, this question is music to my ears! Preparation is a vital step for ensuring the success of any upcoming project, and recognizing the need for preparation will maximize your project’s timeline and efficiency!

That being said, I have some quick tips and tricks for any organization preparing for their next software implementation:

• Always begin your preparation process with the formation of your project team. To do so, assess which individuals will become key end users for your new software. These individuals should always be considered for the project team. Then, determine if help will be needed to get your new product installed. If so, consider including the database administrator and the IT representative too.

As a best practice, your project team will always run smoother if one person is assigned as the team lead for coordination and communication. 

• Project teams may range in size, but it is much more manageable to keep the team smaller for an efficient remote training. Here at Omatic, we suggest a good size project team will be around 3-5 people. In order to minimize your team size, you can always choose one or two key end users to train any additional individuals that may become future end users.

Before you jump into the implementation – it’s vital to refresh your team’s familiarity with your scope of services. Realigning your team with the scope will keep everyone clear on the objectives for your project. Then, with the end in sight, your team will know how to pace themselves for execution.

Last but not least, don’t forget to reference your Project Manager. The purpose of a project manager is to keep your team on track and to help address any questions or concerns along the way.

Being prepared by following some simple guidelines can go a long way towards ensuring that a software implementation goes smoothly. The last thing that people want when going through a software implementation is to start missing key milestones due to a lack of preparation. So, get your team and leader(s) together and don’t be afraid to ask for help!

Raiser’s Edge™ is a trademark of Blackbaud, Inc.

 

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