Race to the finish line: How to implement a new software solution or project before Christmas and start fresh in 2020

Starting to see the Melbourne Cup promos and Christmas party date claimers come through and feeling like the year is already coming to a close? Before you start fretting about how you’ll get through it all (or before you put your feet up prematurely) – take 2 minutes to read our top tips to make more time for yourself in 2020 – by implementing a new software solution before Christmas! Yes you read that right, it is possible to get through one more project before the year ends. Whether it’s new software / technology, a practice or process improvement, or even a DIY job at home, following these key steps will have you saying “New Year, New Me” when you come back to 2020.

Here’s how:

1. Identify the quick wins and low hanging fruit.

What would you love to not have to do or worry about then you walk into the office in 2020? Make a quick list of all the things driving you crazy, then plot them on this simple graph to assess the effort required to implement a solution, and the impact of making it happen.

2. Make an action plan with dates and helpers – and pencil in progress stand-ups (to keep meetings to the point – the year is ticking by after all). We’ve all heard the saying – if everyone owns it, no one does. When many hands make light work of a bigger project, make sure everyone involved understands what they can contribute and what they need to do to support success. Set hard deadlines and communicate regularly on how you’re tracking! 




3.Celebrate the win!
Regardless of how big or small it was, making changes now and getting things done before Christmas closure will ensure you hit the ground running in the new year, so do make sure you celebrate when your project comes to fruition. While it might seem like a crazy time of year to add in even more lunches, appointments, or parties, even a quick update at the start of an all team meeting (including thanks to the helpers) will make sure everyone is across the change/s, understands how it will impact them, and might even get a bit excited for the next project in line!

4.Plan ahead. So you’ve implemented a change or two before close – why stop there? Start researching and make a shortlist of projects / action areas you are interested in exploring in detail so you can hit the ground running in the new year. Take it one step further and pre-book discovery calls so you turn those plans into reality! We’ll give you one to keep an eye on – our very own HowNow X will be arriving early in 2020. Want to learn more? Click here to book in a time for a chat.

By the way – if you’re hosting Christmas this year – these tips can definitely help with that!

Stumped for ideas on what you’ll implement this side of Christmas? Here are some great easy-to-implement process and software improvements that can have a big impact with little effort across your office.

1. Syphon off emails you’ve been CCd into or that contain the word “unsubscribe” in the body. Create sub folders for these and review them weekly. You can even set an auto responder on those with a CC to let the sender know there might be a delay. While this might not fit the description of a new software solution, we guarantee it will help keep your inbox that little bit more manageable over the Christmas holidays, and if you get your whole team on board you won’t hear about everyone needing to “clear their inbox” on day one!

2. Schedule software reviews with your providers. Reach out to your relationship managers or sales contacts to pencil in 30 minute power sessions – let them know you’re keen to make sure you’re using the solution to its full potential and want to hear how they can help you work smarter in 2020 (by the way, you can book a time with the business fitness team HERE to do just that).

3. Look for lightweight, easy to implement solutions that streamline key business processes like Reportance, our practice ledger program that seamlessly handles the end-to-end process of preparing workpapers and instantly generating polished & professional, branded statutory reports and can stand alone or integrate with Smart Workpapers to really ramp up your productivity.

What project, solution, change, or process improvement will you implement before you sign off on 2019? Let us know – we’d love to hear how it goes.