This month, we’re looking at what life is like for our lead consultant, Eva. Those of you who know Eva know she has amazing people skills and loves a challenge!
Take it away Eva!
Working as a consultant with Gradient is an exciting and rewarding challenge and revolves around understanding people and empathising with their situation. Of course, we need to know our stuff, but we always look towards helping the client.
A project starts, the first visits to the client commence, and the challenge is in front of you.
Is it your challenge alone?
Hopefully no. You’re likely to have an array of users with different expectations about what should happen! So, this, then, is not just your challenge. It must be shared across all the stakeholders.
Do you agree?
As consultants, we ask ourselves the following, and the starting point is always people:
- Have the employees been briefed in preparation for the task ahead?
- Which culture is embedded at work? Is it a positive culture?
- Will they be willing to work with us, all together, as a team to transform the business for the better?
- Who are the super-users?
- Has the company drawn a plan, and has it been shared?
- Are we all working towards the same goal?
The next question the consultant will ask is about your processes.
Over the years, the processes get entangled, twisted, and muddled… a lot of synonyms to explain why the processes got too difficult. Nobody understands what is happening. So, we need to reverse and put them right.
Sometimes, there is a better way than just talking about how things work. It can be useful to get a visual overview of how things work.
So, let’s map them!
This exercise will allow us to discover the stakeholders, phases, outputs and inputs, systems, policies, issues, gaps, and bottlenecks.
This is always useful, but let’s return to the first point.
Do we have the users engaged?
Are they prepared to share the information with us and their business colleagues?
Well, if we map your processes with you and get everybody around the table. It allows sharing of information amongst all the stakeholders.
Breaking the ice is what the consultant has been trying to do all along!
And last, what systems do they currently have, and how do we move the processes into SyteLine?
All sounds easy, right?
We know what they do and the processes, but now we must move the business into the new System.
Training starts, and this can be different depending on each user.
For some, it is a joy to learn. For others, the fear of failing is genuine. So, this is when we need to have empathy and be able to put ourselves in other people’s shoes.
We want to bring those users along for the journey with respect, a positive attitude, and a smile. So, we must be patient and prepared to repeat the processes until the user feels comfortable and happy with what they must do.
When everybody is trained, we prepare for User Acceptance Testing, commonly known as UAT. This is to verify that the system is fit for purpose and fulfils the business requirements. Occasionally, we find some resistance, but overall, everybody by now is on board.
The Go Live is imminent!
There is usually a wide acceptance that this is going to happen. The consultant starts to see a light at the end of the tunnel. However, the challenge is not finished; we must GO LIVE.
Users get nervous again, and some old fears are returning. What do the consultants do? We calm everybody down. Don’t rush; don’t act quickly. Take small steps during the go live.
Have a plan, a checklist, and the Gradient Consulting team on standby.
This is just an example of the day in the life of a consultant. Some days are the same; others are different, as no two projects or clients are alike!
If you want to upgrade, implement or change your SyteLine installation, then why not get in touch to see how we can help?