Project Management

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Getting PSA off the ground
Professional Services Automation (PSA) applications can indeed revolutionize
the way project-based organizations conduct business by making them more
efficient and profitable. But the hardest part is often getting started. A
PSA solution should be fast to implement, require little upfront cost and
work with existing business processes.
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Hi Jeff,

Your PSA solution recommendations are good. I have a couple of related questions to help me understand more clearly what is involved.

What roles in an organization are typically involved in a PSA imlementation project? What are their activities and time commitments?
John, implementing a PSA solution is most often a collaborative process among employees from several functional areas in an organization. Generally it involves representatives from HR, Finance, end users (service professionals or internal project teams), and the IT department. The role of the first three functions is usually in specifying exactly how the PSA solution will be used, and how it needs to work with existing systems. The role of IT varies enormously depending on which solution is being implemented. At one end of the spectrum it can be a multi-month installation and training process involving consultants from the software manufacturer and demanding extensive involvement from the IT staff. At the other end of the spectrum, an implementation can require almost no drain on the IT department. For example, OpenAir offers a pure ASP implementation option, which lets an account administrator open an account online and configure it through about an hour or so consultation session with an OpenAir professional services representative. With the OpenAir Internet Appliance option, an OpenAir representative can implement the solution at the client office in less than an hour with virtually no involvement of the IT department.
OK, Jeff. Thanks - That is helpful.

I understand that your product allows some kind of customization to your client's business process and cycle. This should be of particular interest to many Project Managers. Can you describe this process in a little more detail?

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