Think about the experiences that you’ve had with technology improvements. Did the IT projects you’ve been involved with interrupt business operations? Did they finish on time and on budget? Did they bring you the results that were promised?
If these questions are stirring up some bad memories, you’re not alone. Technology projects are notorious for running late, spilling over budget, and causing frustration for employees and customers alike.
The good news is that it is possible to get a great project experience that brings the outcomes you expect AND is covered under a flat fee.
Yes, that’s right -- a flat fee for IT projects. If you’ve had bad experiences with IT projects in the past, you might be wondering how a flat fee is even possible. It all has to do with the process and that process begins with IT strategy. Here’s how we accomplish this at XPERTECHS.
Technology Project Process
The XPERTECHS project process includes five main steps:
1. IT Strategic Planning
Every XPERTECHS client is on their unique path of IT improvement. Investments aimed at creating a solid IT foundation and leveraging new technology are identified and planned through consultation with their XPERTECHS vCIO. The vCIO meets regularly with clients to learn about their business and connect technology solutions with their goals. Most projects are planned out months in advance.
Related: What's a vCIO and Why Do I Need One?
2. Project Scoping
When it’s time to start planning a project, the XPERTECHS team gathers all the details so that they can start planning. The project team is identified at this stage and pulling these individuals together early allows the team to think about every aspect of implementation. Contact is made with any third parties that will be involved, like a software vendor or internet provider.
As the project design is drafted, pricing for hardware and supplies, and labor is determined. If the requested hardware is not available in an acceptable timeline because of supply chain issues, an alternative is identified. Software licensing is addressed.
Related: Plan Ahead to Avoid Computer Equipment Supply Problems
By the time the project gets to the proposal stage, it has already been planned out in detail. This is what makes flat fee pricing possible. Generally, the only thing that could change a project quote would be a change in the scope of work.
The client’s vCIO presents the proposal, sometimes along with the Project Manager, both of whom are familiar faces to clients. There’s really no formal handoff as you might expect from Sales to Project Management because everything is accomplished through collaboration, from planning through to cut over.
4. Project Implementation
When a client signs off on a proposal, it’s time to get it on the schedule and get everything kicked off. We have regular meetings with the client point of contact so they know how the project is progressing and when milestones have been achieved.
Contact with clients usually increases as the cut over date approaches, and the time arrives to prepare staff for the change.
5. Cut Over to the New Technology
A primary goal of project implementation here at XPERTECHS is to NOT disrupt client businesses. That’s why we do many cut overs on an evening or weekend. Even with an off hours switch, it’s our practice to have an engineer onsite at the client’s location to quickly take care of any questions or issues.
How the IT Project Magic Happens
Although this summary of our project process gives you a high-level view of what’s happening, have you recognized exactly what it is that creates a great IT project experience? It’s planning. Planning that has a lot of experience behind it.
We’ve been improving IT systems and helping clients adopt brand new technology for decades and we only do projects for managed IT services clients. If you’re longing for an IT provider who can bring you all the specialties you need – from IT and cybersecurity management to technology improvements – we should talk.
Ready to up your technology game? Get in touch.
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