For security guard firms, workforce management can be a complex task. Not only are firms servicing multiple customers, but for each customer there may be multiple locations. Even within the locations, there are different posts, and each post must be staffed with employees that are qualified to tour that post. So, there are a lot of moving parts to the security business. In addition, with a combination of turnover, qualifications, wage rates and bill rates, the ability to maintain profitability is a constant risk.
And yet one of the most overlooked components to a workforce management solution provider is the experience that sits behind the technology. Investing in a solution to help manage the workforce requires a partnership between the provider and the client. That is why it becomes extremely important to select a workforce management provider that will be a partner in your journey to automation. There are 4 major questions you need to address when selecting a workforce management solution provider – that go beyond technology.
Does the Workforce Management Solution Provider Specialize in Servicing Security Guard Companies?
Technology, especially technology such as workforce management, can come in many forms. Solution providers will often create technology that is agnostic and generic to many industries. However, as we stated above, Security Guard firms are not generic; there are many unique facets that make it highly critical to have specialized best practices.
The main thing you need to address is whether the solution provider is solely or primarily focused on your industry. You want a provider that knows your best practices and has built a solution to match them.
Does the Workforce Management Solution provider have the processes and expertise to help you succeed?
Solution providers always want to provide a service that will scale. However, as they try to scale and create ways to implement you, there can be a trade-off on the “personal touch”. You are investing in a solution, but your investment should not be considered a commodity in the company’s model.
Since you’ve invested your time and money into automating your workforce, it’s important that the provider invests in the relationship with you as the customer. You want to ensure that the workforce management provider is giving you a resource you can count on to take you through the process at every step.
How does the Workforce Management Solution Provider help you with Lessons Learned?
Think about the last time you implemented a software solution. It’s unlikely that everything went smoothly, and lessons you learned from that experience can be a huge help in setting expectations for the next implementation. If you haven’t implemented software before, you want to have a discussion with the solution provider on lessons they’ve learned in implementing over time.
You want to identify a workforce management solution provider that will not only listen and respond to your concerns, but also offer any advice for the implementation. How have they managed challenges, and how has it shaped their process? This is also where having a provider with a history of implementing like-minded companies help. If they have encountered any challenges before, they most likely are prepared for them and can help walk you through them.
Is the Workforce Management Solution Provider a Consultant and Adviser for you on Best Practices?
This is probably the best and most beneficial question to ask, since in many ways, it provides you with an added value resource. There are many providers that may not know the industry well, may not have a history of implementing like-minded business, or don’t have the time to work with you in detail.
This is where industry experience, coupled with implementation pedigree come in handy. But moreover than that, the solution provider becomes a trusted adviser on best practices. There is a wealth of knowledge you can tap into and make an impact on your process from that knowledge. Look for a workforce management solution provider that has the experience, the team, and the best practices to partner with you on advising your implementation in every step.
Do your Homework: Look beyond the Technology to the People behind it
Technology and features are important to automating your workforce. However, it is only one component of the total solution. The total solution is the software PLUS the implementation.
So, to avoid any issues with implementation and rollout, the key is to look for a workforce management solution provider that puts as much effort into the implementation as the software itself. Providers that are focused on your unique business needs, have experience in your industry and bring a history and proven experience with addressing and advising client are far more likely to help you succeed.