A successful demonstration is one of the most important steps when implementing a new HR software. It’s the difference between the software supporting employees and minimising workload, or contributing to software fatigue and eventually getting lost in the mix.
It’s crucial that the person leading the project is as expertly prepared, to ensure everyone gets as much value as possible from it. Implementing a new HR software requires knowing all the features and the benefits before going ahead with a decision, so ensuring that key stakeholders can attend the demo is number one priority. The project leader should also have questions prepared, in case the HR software vendor doesn’t share all of the necessary information. This way, the demo is as valuable as it can be, and key stakeholders can make a well-informed decision.
Given the gravity of a HR software demo, we’ve put some tips together to ensure it’s a successful one:
- Carefully select vendors
HR software demos are time consuming for everyone attending, including the vendor. As a project leader, you should do sufficient research so you know exactly how this vendor’s offering matches the requirements of your company.
If key stakeholders make time for the demo and then it turns out to be completely irrelevant for the company, they might feel begrudged for having their time wasted. Try to avoid this as much as possible. Project leaders might want to request a proposal as part of the procurement process, to really do a deep dive into the software.
Some of the larger HR software vendors might be too expensive for a company of under 100 employees, so project leaders should also take pricing into consideration when researching.
- Invite all the necessary people
Project leaders should be sure that at least one person from the key departments is represented at the demo. Departments such as IT, Finance, HR, Payroll, would all benefit from coming along. In some smaller organisations, Managing Directors or Operations Directors might want to jump on too, so ensure that the people who want to be represented are. Having people from different departments join the call is beneficial to the decision making process as everyone will have specific requirements to their department, so can ask the relevant questions. If the HR team selects a HR Software system on their own, they could be isolating other groups and not taking their needs into account.
With several department representatives joining the call, it might be difficult to pin down a time. Avoid going back and forth with conflicting schedules and schedule demos far in advance.
- Schedule a discovery call
As part of the research process, a discovery call helps the project leader and the vendor determine if this is the right route for the company. This saves everyone’s time. It avoids the vendor needing to pause the demo to ask questions about the company and prevents a generic demo that doesn’t specify how the HR software meets the company’s particular needs. The vendor should understand which of the system’s features benefit the company, to help inform the decision. This is an essential part of ensuring a seamless, successful demo.
- Obtain feedback
After the demo, it’s a good idea to reach out to people who came along to get their feedback. Ask if they felt anything was missing, what they liked, and what they would like to see in a potential second demo. Encourage complete transparency when sharing any concerns, so that they can properly be addressed. This helps to make further decisions about selecting other HR Software systems, if this one isn’t quite right.
- Share the feedback with vendors
Take the feedback to the vendor and share what the wider team’s thoughts were. This gives them the opportunity to provide more information and address whether the feedback was accurate. For example, one of the stakeholders might hold reservations because it seemed there were certain limitations in the software. Sharing this feedback with the vendor allows them to say whether this is true or not, and provide further explanation.
- Consider a second demo
After receiving feedback from the stakeholders, it might seem like there were a lot of questions unanswered. In this case, a follow-up demo would be beneficial to everyone. The team gets to understand the software more and address concerns. Similarly, the vendor can answer questions and share more features that they might not have first time round for lack of time or other reasons.
- Make a decision
Once all the demos have been done, the project leader should obtain final feedback from the stakeholder team to come to a final decision. They should update the HR software vendor with any further feedback, and let them know the company’s decision.
Following these steps should result in a complete understanding of the functionalities of the software, and how they meet the requirements of the company. It’s also beneficial for the vendor, as they spend a lot of time preparing for and delivering demos. Ensuring time isn’t wasted and providing comprehensive feedback helps everyone.
How Phase 3 can support you in running a successful demo
As HR software consultants, we understand the gravity of demos. If you’re looking for support on researching and preparing for a demo, we can help ensure that it is as valuable as possible for everyone involved. We work with you to ensure that you get the most of your investment, and help HR and Payroll teams streamline their processes and save time. To find out more, reach out today.