While nobody likes constant change, there usually comes a time for your company when you feel like you have to make a decision to stay with the same software or make a break. It is never an easy decision or one that should be taken lightly. If you visited the tradeshow at the MSCA Conference or the MCAA Virtual Tradeshow, you see new features in service software that grab your attention and you think about how nicely your company could operate with that newer, shinier software package.
Then you think about how much time and effort you have invested in what you are using. You think about the hard road ahead to shake up your operations and train staff to use it effectively. You think about how much time and money you have invested in the system you are using now, and if it is worth starting over with something else.
Let’s be clear, you are not married to your software. Nobody gets bonus points for loyalty to a line of code. It’s important to keep your eyes open if you want to stay competitive.
Still, most service contractors rarely act on those impulses to leave the software they know, and the company that produced it.
According to the new MSCA Field Service Software Report, released at the MSCA Conference as part of the ongoing MCAA Technology Series, researchers from JB Knowledge found that more than 55% of MSCA contractors have been using their current service software for more than 10 years. That’s an admirable level of dedication that exceeds most Hollywood marriages. What’s more amazing is that if you dig deeper in the numbers, you find that nearly 10% of those surveyed have been using their service software for more than 20 years!
But is this a bad thing? At first glance, you might say to yourself, ‘That is too long to be sticking with the same solution.’ This may or may not be true. Many functions of the software evaluated are very similar to each other. Most integrate with apps for tablets. Most tie into accounting software. The key is in the details. There are different levels of integration that require a varying amount of manipulation and oversight.
For example, if your software requires you to perform a daily export and then to import your field tickets into your accounting package, those are two extra steps. That not only means extra work, it means an extra chance for errors. Seamless integration into your accounting software saves steps, errors and headaches.
So, it might be well worth your time to take a look around. Read the report and see what each option has to offer. The report is a complimentary part of MSCA and MCAA membership. If your current software is ticking all the boxes, you’ll have reinforced your decision with due diligence. But if you can save your company and your employees hours of frustration, you’ll be glad you did before another 10 years roll around.