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5 Ways People Can Be The Problem in Software Failure

Updated: Jun 10, 2022

Depiction of people sitting around table discussing a technology project

Yes, this is one of George Constanza’s, from the TV show Seinfeld's, most famous one liners which many of us have heard before. In this article, we wanted to underscore the importance people and personalities involved in software projects play in achieving success with nonprofit software engagements.

But, before we dig to deep, review the below for a little humor to get into the mood:

Yes, old George was continually finding ways to blame everybody except himself for his lack of success, wasn’t he?

Let’s face it. It’s easier to point to the software as the culprit in your failure to reach your goals with automation. And, it’s equally easy to think that a new database is the answer to all the challenges in your association.

It may be, but the successful implementation of a new Association nonprofit engagement system requires people. And, People, the good, the bad, and the indifferent are the ones who will make the software a solution or a failure in most scenarios.

5 Ways People Can Be The Problem in Software Failure:

  1. Expectations: Piling all of your hopes onto the new software. It is our silver bullet, our knight in shining armor. Our faith in it is so deep that we just know — to our core, in our heart of hearts — that it will do absolutely everything we have or will ever need it to. And, if it does anything less than that, we are justified in hating it with a vengeance.

  2. Customizations: By agreeing to change software, but not business practices. Let our protective mantra be, “But that’s how we’ve always done it”.

  3. Project Management: By agreeing to do our part and to meet our deadlines, and never doing either.

  4. Monkey Jumping: By returning back to old software as soon as there is a snag instead of getting help.

  5. Fooling Ourselves: By saying we agree to change but not really meaning it.

Even though most nonprofits are not spending the thousands of dollars they once did to acquire a new system, it doesn’t matter. Whether you spend one dollar or hundreds of thousands of dollars, your investment is critical to the success and reputation of your executive team and your association.

We don’t mean to sell the software short or give it a pass in responsibility with failure. But, If you haven’t upgraded in the last five years or so, customer relationship management software for nonprofits has come a long way. Most leading Association Management Software providers today are all good and if you choose a product that aligns with your association’s needs, you can see a vast improvement in productivity and effectiveness.

The less hyped reality is, the software is only about 15 percent of the solution.

The technology is important, but in terms of its impact on the overall success of the implementation, it’s a very small piece .

The simple fact is that most of the problems that occur during a software implementation are not related to the technology, but how the project is being managed and how leadership views the importance of the project.

Finding a good vendor partner is critical to the success of any software you decide to move forward with. You should be very cautious on who you partner with to deliver the solution. And, we can help you find the right one to meet your needs.

If you would like to discuss, give us a call or leave a reply below.

Until then, keep SmartThoughts in mind.


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