February 24, 2020

Unexpected benefits providing a project plan

Ger Apeldoorn @ger

So we have a high touch SaaS that helps people with special needs to be more self-reliant. Something interesting happened that might help your business as well.

We are mostly focused on living facilities for people with learning disabilities and are gaining traction in our home country.

However, pretty much every organization wants to run a pilot before a broader rollout. This can take a lot of lead time because every organization reinvents the wheel. Additionally, every pilot has a lot of moving parts and is set up differently for each organization.

A few months ago I was struggling with this issue. Part of the problem is that the customer does not know what to expect in every phase of the pilot and after. How can I make it clear what the decisions in each stage are and what they can expect during?

What if I would write the project plan for them? Originally, the goal was that every stage of the pilot and the post-pilot scaleup phase was clear. The customer could have an example of how to structure their project plan.

Each stage of the pilot has a nice list of deliverables and choices. Usually, the organization wants to do a bit of research to determine if RoutineFactory is effective. So I added surveys for before and after the pilot that can be distributed with Google forms.

Providing this project plan has had some interesting and unexpected benefits:

  • The customer is thankful that we make their job a lot easier.
  • Showing that we have thought this through builds a lot of trust instantly. Instead of only being the supplier we are an active partner in the project.
  • The project plan makes it very easy to help the customer make the right choices for a successful outcome, like setting expectations and a proper scale of the pilot.
  • Eliminating uncertainties and not having to write a project plan and surveys reduces the lead time immensely.

It has only been a few weeks that we have been using this project plan but I am astounded by how well it works already and how well it is received by our customers.

I would really encourage you to think if you can do something for your customers to make their job easier by doing part of their job for them. It is highly beneficial to have some influence over that process and it is likely that your customer will thank you for it.

Thanks for reading, please let me know if you have any ideas for your business or mine. I would happily explore them with you.

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