Assuming the burden of new solution efforts
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Challenges in Automation Decisions: The Burden

I’ve been working with clients on adopting automated solutions for their organizations for most of my career.  Unfortunately, not all of them move forward.  Statistically, 40-60% won’t.

Some will say that priorities have shifted and they’re going to wait, or they’ve decided to stay with existing manual processes, or they have some other reason.

While those explanations may sometimes be valid, the three most common reasons for not moving forward actually have to do with fear of failure, burden, and value.

In my last post, we talked about Fear of Failure (definitely a big reason).  Another major reason for not moving forward is Burden.

Burden – Perceived or Real?

Whenever we talk to a new team about automation, there’s always excitement about potential efficiencies, new options, and benefits – almost a contagious, positive energy surrounding the client’s initiative.

But it doesn’t take long before the shift happens.  The excitement changes to concern – concern about what this is all “going to take.”

Statements like these seem to crop up:

  • The IT team already has more than it can handle.
  • It will be hard to win over the users – they like our current way of doing things.
  • If we have to communicate with the ERP, we’ll never get on their schedule anytime soon.

We get it.  Everyone is busy, needs to do more with less, and nobody likes change.

Traditionally, bringing in automation solutions – especially if they have anything to do with your ERP – meant that success comes with a heavy burden of time, multiple resources, and change management.

But a successful automation solution doesn’t equate to a heavy burden anymore.

The New Normal in Automation

With the implementation of any new automation solution, there are three consistent elements to the project: Plan, Implementation, and Support.  These generally create additional expenses and resource demands above normal operations – at least for the project’s duration.

In other words – projects mean Burden.

However, the solutions industry is shifting to meet customers where these burdens reside.

For us, we addressed the most vocalized concerns by completely overhauling how we deliver our mobilePLUS solution:

  • IT resource constraints: we deliver our solution in our cloud, shifting the IT administration of the solution from your team to mine.
  • Resistant Users – we continually refine the interface and flow of all functions to make them easy and intuitive so the Users can quickly get comfortable with the new solution.
  • ERP Team – we pre-build integrations to ERPs using the ERP’s own APIs and directives to eliminate the need for development time from your own scarce resources.
  • Project Disruption – the longer the project takes, the longer the people involved are distracted from their other work and priorities. So we streamlined the entire process from implementation to production so that installation can happen in a matter of hours, training as soon as the client team is available, and the first inventory can launch right after that.

While I’d like to think our approach is unique, like any other business, I also have automated solution needs to run HL Group – and have resource constraints and users resistant to change.

I understand the concerns.

We took our own concerns and constraints and built that into our approach.  After all, why would we ever deliver anything less than what we would want for ourselves?


Have you delayed starting a new project due to Burden?  Were you ever able to move past these and move forward?