Professional services operations were previously managed using a combination of spreadsheets and email. Professional services automation (PSA) has helped to right the ship.
Running professional services companies can be challenging. They frequently have a lot of work, but it can be more complex for them to manage that work and pay their staff for it than it is for other kinds of firms. Peaks and valleys in activity, typical for agencies, impact revenue, employee morale, and culture in general.
Due to the breadth and depth of capabilities offered by a single integrated application, professional services automation (PSA) software can be beneficial to any firm.
Since each PSA tool has a unique mix of benefits and advantages, it can be challenging to determine which is best for your team’s needs. You must first evaluate what PSA means for your company, how it will address the unique pain points of your team, and which technologies would best support your company’s operations.
What is PSA?
PSA (Professional Services Automation) is a phrase used to describe the process of automating operational operations so that teams may concentrate on work that adds value and advances the business, such as sending reminders for past-due payments.
In other words, from project planning to project monitoring, client billing, and resource management, the program offers a centralized location to manage all parts of running a professional services business.
What is PSA Software?
A PSA tool handles resource management tasks, freeing teams to concentrate on the work that adds the most value.
Quality PSA software will enable teams to seamlessly link with current CRMs, accounting programs, and other systems and maintain real-time synchronization across all platforms. This increases productivity and efficiency across the board since you always have access to the data you require on a single dashboard.
Features of the PSA tool
When evaluating tools, you should keep an eye out for a few essential aspects that can differ from vendor to vendor.
- Forecasting and visibility
While PSA platforms let you manage projects, the majority still need to provide a thorough overview or the capacity to forecast the workload in the future. However, the main factor in corporate success may be effectively controlling revenue and expenses. Revenue management can not only assist you in avoiding unnecessary costs, but it can also stop unbilled work from negatively impacting your bottom line. Because of this, a good PSA must provide forecasting and budgeting features.
- Project Management
Being able to plan and arrange your work so that everyone knows what has to be done, how much time is left, and who is responsible for what is a crucial component of teamwork. Because of this, it’s critical to pick a PSA tool that facilitates the management of this work and lowers data entry friction, whether for specific tasks, events, or whole projects. You will save time by avoiding errors and misunderstandings and be able to examine your results without relying on anecdotal evidence, thanks to the effort you put into data entry.
- Time-tracking and timesheets
Time-tracking software is the simplest and most accurate way to monitor how much time you spend on various tasks, enabling you to see where time might be saved in the future. Timesheets are essential for monitoring your budget and determining where you’re spending the most, whether you’re working with internal teams, external clients, or suppliers.
- Resource Planning
Like forecasting, most PSA systems let you decide about future resources using the information you’ve already gathered. Everything is much simpler and more time-efficient if you can plan, allocate, and track your help using the same platform you use for project management and time tracking.
- Dashboard and reporting
Most PSA tools will include pre-built templates for reports that you may edit to suit your needs. Several alternatives are available to you to compare the data to the metrics most important to you and your business, whether you need to develop a project, sales, financial, or other reports.
- Resource Management
Resource management tool is essential for any business that values effective, long-lasting workflows. However, in professional service companies, workload management and capacity planning can ensure that you’re operating at full capacity.
Professional services automation software offers businesses the tools to monitor resource usage and anticipate resource demand, enabling them to plan when to bring in new employees. When you need to create a staffing plan or get ready for staff augmentation, it’s a terrific helping hand.
How to choose PSA Software?
- Prioritizing your needs
Determine the most crucial needs of your firm as a first step. These needs can be divided into must-haves and nice-to-haves. Keep in mind that qualitative requirements like user experience will impact the effectiveness of your software implementation.
- Identify the stakeholders
Once you have determined your needs, it is time to speak with those choosing the PSA software. These stakeholders can advise you on how to structure your requirements list and give their opinion on the most crucial features.
- Calculate software implementation time.
It would be best if you also considered how long it would take to integrate the resource scheduling software into your company’s processes.
- Consider pricing
Budget restrictions are another aspect that affects decision-making; some businesses have huge budgets, while others have none at all! Make sure the PSA instrument you choose fits within your financial restrictions.
- Assess the tools you’ve chosen against your criteria.
Your list of prospective solutions should be condensed depending on the most critical aspects of your business objectives. While there are numerous PSA solution types on the market right now, certain suppliers might offer more than one kind of product, allowing them to satisfy more than one aspect of your needs.
PSA tools are a fantastic way to increase team productivity, enhance cooperation, save time and money, and have proven to be an efficient Resource Management. Finding the tool that best suits your business and needs should be a breeze if you follow the procedures mentioned earlier.
Still, trying to figure out where to begin? Most PSA tools provide a free trial, so you can use them before buying. Start your free 14-day trial of eRS now.