How Do You Know When You Are Asking the Right Questions?

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About The HRIS World Project Insights Series™ #thwCES

This series is focused on approaching HRIS Project Management from outside of the box as experienced and documented by Garrett O’Brien of CGServicesUSA Inc as well as Lauren Gander of HR Software Solutions, Inc.

Let’s be clear right up front that we are not ditching any of the methodologies of Project Management. Instead, we are taking a look at just why some projects go so well while most others do not from our own experiences as well as those documented elsewhere. From there we are focusing on the successful elements that seem to be missing from most Project Management methodologies. The projects that do not go so well happen more frequent than not and it seems most Project Managers just give in to timeline extensions and over budget occurrences as being part of the learning curve to gain for the next project as well as being part of the job.

Garrett did as well until his 5th project and decided there was more to making a project come in on-time and within budget than just luck and more likely the cause of missing skills as well as incorrect perceptions. If some Project Managers could run most if not all their projects on time and within budget while most others could not, then we sought out to find out why some could consistently do so well.

We look into what contributed to those consistent successes in our entire content series The HRIS World Project Insights Series™ with the first 6 posts sharing the professional experiences of Garrett O’Brien. These 1st 6 posts are the foundation of most of this series and it is highly suggested you give them a good read. They are easily found with the short URLs to /thwCESintro6 as well as in the listing of related content in the toggle box at the end of all posts related to this series.

All other content arrives from contributors like you as well as the sharing of experiences from Lauren Gander’s company. Feel free to reach out to us if you wish to contribute some your thoughts via a post by clicking the contact us button on the lower right of any page.

Feedback, debates, discussion, collaboration and conversation are always encouraged in the comments section below... For more information about this series, use the blue contact us button on the lower right of your screen to contact us -- or if you are reading this by our newsletter, then hit the reply button to get back to us!

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With the economical challenges every business is facing, trimming costs and maintaining a watchful eye on overhead and project costs is paramount for all businesses, whether SMB’s or international enterprises.

The economics landscape is changing drastically — and ideas, innovative or not, need to be focused on providing more return for their investment…

This includes an increase in efficiencies, cost-effectiveness, a well-defined ROI is imperative to keeping costs under control and effective training that reduces the learning curve after the implementation.

The Real Goal of Your Investment

Obtaining a new HRIS system for many will assist in consolidating business processes, information storage, task management and recording of time and attendance – for large companies and enterprises the list is extensive as the economies-to-scale kick in.

Whether the new system is replacing a legacy system or replacing several labor intensive business processes, the goal is to not only to have your investment returned in short order but also increase your efficiencies and effectiveness after the system has been implemented.

A Need for Comparisons

HR Software Solutions, Inc., seen at, owned and managed by Lauren Gander and is one of our Preferred Vendors provides a great start in determining which systems to take into consideration as well as project management considerations

Equally so is HR Tech Advisor, seen at, owned and managed by Ward Christman who can provide you with some thoughts and considerations for software and system selections.

Place Value to Your Selection Process

But which systems should you be taking into consideration?

At first it may appear that the choice(s) is obvious…

But is it?

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The value you place on this selection process will be evident through the implementation process as well as the life of the system…

You can’t divorce your system once the implementation passes the engagement…

Well… you can but you may be broke afterwards!

There are always cases of a company choosing what they thought was the right system – only to have one unnecessary challenge after another domino throughout the selection and implementation process.

Once the dominoes start, there are only two ways to stop them – either putting a brake on everything or just let it all play out, guiding everything towards your intended goal and hoping as much as possible arrives there as well.

Either way you have to start rebuilding from the beginning as the implementation (and in some cases production) continues…

Fit Your Selection to Your Immediate Future

Each system has their own sets of strengths and weaknesses – whether SMB, large company or enterprise level systems.

Inadvertently choosing a system that has a weakness where you need your system to be strong – now and in the future – is the worst case scenario.

You may end up needing to create workarounds that could end up being high maintenance and labor intensive, or worse needing another system to fill in the gaps…

Business Processes Efficiencies and Effectiveness

In order to keep the economics maximized, the message is clear – you have to do your homework based upon the information needs of your company as well as your present business processes.

Keep in mind that even with the best-fit system, you may still need to consider redesigning your business processes in order to maximize effectiveness and efficiencies.

This also encompasses knowing without a doubt what your employees will need for reporting based upon company policies and protocols.

Questions Lead to Your Answers – Right or Wrong

Do you really know what questions to ask?

Are you sure you have the right questions?

Have you taken into consideration the normal work load each user of the system will have as well as all your reporting needs?

Did you know approaching the discovery process and your needs assessment from the correct angle can take less than 3 weeks to accomplish?

Did you know that the wrong questions could double the cost of your implementation – even if they seemed to be the right questions at the time?

Where You Focus is Where You Will Go

Proper planning and perspectives from the very beginning is essential.

There are processes that may seem tedious and unnecessary – until the 20/20 vision of hindsight kicks in and you realize what was missed.

So this leads to a whole new set of questions revolving around one focus – what will it take to get from thinking you need a new system to having a system that is the best fit for your company?

A system that works for one company will not necessarily be the best fit another company even if they are in the same industry


But knowing where to look and what answers you are seeking are more important than having the right questions.

Over the next several installments, we will discuss the approach needed to provide a methodology that will guide you to a system that is the best fit for your company.

We will look at how to increase your ROI, your efficiencies as well as your business processes effectiveness.

The end result will be to help you develop a well-designed strategic vision and the processes required to choose and implement a new system.

You will find this will reduce the pain involved in knowing what to seek and what methods to use in acquiring a new system, if a new system is indeed needed.



Editor’s Note: Would These 2 Things Make a Difference in Your Projects?, Continues where this post left off…

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Garrett O'Brien

CEO, Chairman, Publisher, Editor at The HRIS World Research Group

Garrett is the publisher, editor, writer forThe HRIS World Research Group, which includes The HRIS World, The HRIS World Research, The HRIS World Jobs, The HRIS World News, The HRIS World NewsMagazines, and The HRIS World Videos

With more than 20 years in roles as a client executive sponsor (#thwCES), project manager as well as functional/technical lead, Garrett is sought for his expertise for project insights, thought leadership, and team management globally.

He has been involved in large-scale and complex implementations since 1991 and has recently moved his operations to be with his wife in Brazil.

Garrett has had the pleasure of working with some of the greatest talents in the industry, and constantly shares his experiences and knowledge through content and webinars.

He maintains his fluency in Portuguese, German, French, and English with his various endeavors and contacts..

When not working, you will have to be adventurous to stay up with him as Garrett loves motorcycling, gunnery, boating, sailing, flying, and sports fishing -- and accompanying his wife on her various likes

About The HRIS World Research Group

The HRIS World blog, which is read by more than 50,000 from more than 160 countries monthly, manages to have more than 550,000 pages viewed monthly. 40%+ of the audience are decision-makers in their organization (and about half of that being C-levels!).

As CEO for CGServices USA Inc, he focuses on multi-provider, multi-line implementations consultation for HRIS systems

Council and Education Member of Gerson Lehrman Group Council, helping institutions of the world leaders meet, engage and manage experts across a wide range of sectors and disciplines.

Your Invite to Inspire Others

If you'd like to provide a post, a series of posts, or become a regular contributor to The HRIS World, click the blue contact us button on the bottom right of your screen to send us a message or reach us through our social media for details...

You can always contact Garrett via email, social media, or by leaving a comment below...

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Posted in best practice, business, columns, CXO, HRIS bp, Leadership, needs assessment, project management, strategic planning, The HRIS World Content Series™, The HRIS World Project Insights Series™, The HRIS World Research and tagged , , , , .

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