If we asked you when you last had an MOT on your car, the chances are, assuming your car needs one, you’d be able to tell us. But if we asked the same of your business systems? Would you be able to tell us when you last really got under the bonnet and had a good look around?
Possibly not, and that is not unusual.
The problem is that we spend far too much time working in our business, doing the day-to-day things that drive profits, rather than looking at how well our business processes are working.
That is where our Business Systems MOT comes in.
How does the MOT work?
Step 1 – the preparation
As with most things like this, the key is preparation! The first thing to mention is that this MOT does not have to cover all your business systems in use. It could be just one, so for example we could look at how your financial system is working for you, or perhaps your CRM. Or it could include them all, the choice is yours.
The first step is for us to really evaluate your business. This means getting into the detail of how things work for you right now. The challenges you face, but also the opportunities you have. We’ll look at everything including the software licences you have, the upgrade paths for the software you use, and other key things such as your disaster recovery plans.
Literally, everything that forms part of your business processes will be reviewed.
Step 2 – the inspection
This is the main part of the MOT. This is where we work with your employees to find out how things are really working for them. This step includes a short questionnaire that encourages them to offer detailed feedback about how well processes are working, or not! Do these processes make sense? Have additional steps crept in which may mean that they are using different software such as spreadsheets, databases or documents to keep track of important data?
This stage is not only a crucial part of the service, but it also helps the members of your team to feel really connected to the process and the outcomes that it may provide.
Step 3 – the results
The final step is to present the findings to you. This usually comes in the form of a report which covers all the information which we have collated from the first two steps. This will also cover some detailed gap analysis. This analysis may show that there are steps which you can take which would give you significant benefits. All of which will be detailed in an action plan that gives you everything you need to know to enable you to remove inefficiencies, meet your business objectives, but most importantly re-engages your team!
How do I know if I need this?
The answer to this will be different for each business. One of the usual signs that you are ready for an MOT is that you have multiple versions of the truth. By this, we mean that to get one piece of business information, such as accurate forecasts, you may need to talk to several different people or gather data from disparate systems.
This usually happens because people have started to lose faith in the business software being an accurate representation of what they need and start to add in their own way of processing data typically via spreadsheets.
You may also find that even a simple request, such as what is the current position of the business, may take days to reach the truth. Whilst you may be able to run like this for some time, eventually and perhaps inevitably, this will end up in your business becoming less competitive.
Why do I need you to help me with this?
This is a question we get asked a lot, and we understand why! After all, many of us would not like to admit that we need help from an external source. But, having said that, there are many benefits to asking us to support you.
Firstly, we’re impartial. Whilst we take great care to understand your business, your team, and your culture, we are also not embedded in it. We do not have any preconceived ideas about how your business should work. We just understand business and business processes and how they can work best for you.
We also have experience. Many of our consultants have worked in the industry or run their own businesses – sometimes even both! This makes us ideally placed to be able to offer a 360-degree view of your business, from the ground up.
We have been there. Most of our team have been in the situation that you may find yourself in now. In that place where you no longer trust what your ERP, CRM or finance software is telling you. Where your standard operating procedures are becoming anything but standard. We understand how that feels. This empathy means that we’re also able to connect with your team members and see the situation from their perspective.
All of this means that we truly can give you a valuable service that can help ensure your business systems work as hard as you do.
If you feel like you need to take that first step to get your business running smoothly, then why not get in touch? We would love to hear from you.