Glasgow-based Southside Housing Association (SHA) marked a key point in the launch of their new housing management solution with a lively workshop day, held at their head office in Cardonald.
Southside Housing Association selected Orchard ERP partner last year after a competitive tender process, and will implement Orchard’s Housing, Asset and Finance modules. Since then, SHA have been working closely with Orchard consultants to develop a detailed implementation plan, designed to increase efficiency and reduce administrative load across all areas of the organisation.
As part of the launch event, around 70 SHA colleagues and 13 Orchard implementation team members took part in a series of meetings, presentations and workshops to introduce the new Orchard solutions, familiarise staff with its features and benefits, and provide an overview of the planned changes.
Effectively managing change as they shift to Orchard is a key priority for SHA and the workshop day was designed to engage and introduce colleagues in all departments to some of the new Orchard modules early in the implementation to increase familiarisation and comfort with functionality and look and feel.
The event started with a series of presentations from both Orchard and SHA team members,covering the reasons for moving to Orchard, the stages of the delivery process, the expected benefits to SHA colleagues and customer, and the measures being put in place to ensure that the change is implemented effectively and to plan.
After the presentations, colleagues from SHA were invited to attend breakout sessions with Orchard consultants, who they’ll be working with directly during the implementation, who demonstrated some of the Orchard modules they’ll be using in the near future These sessions were incredibly well attended, with a high level of interest for all of the sessions, demonstrating a high level of engagement and enthusiasm among colleagues.
The launch was then brought to a close with a quiz, giving the SHA and Orchard team a chance to celebrate a successful day.
The workshop day was designed to provide as many opportunities as possible for teams to ask questions and begin discussing any worries or concerns about what is set to be a transformational change at SHA.
By combining presentations, breakout sessions and a quiz, SHA provided colleagues with several opportunities to talk to Orchard consultants both on a formal and more informal basis, with many conversations started that will continue throughout the implementation process. The event delivered on it’s objective to begin to generate anticipation , address early concerns, and build momentum to help deliver the project.
Feedback from SHA and Orchard colleagues about the event has been extremely positive, with a common theme being excitement the amount of time and manual effort saved by Orchard’s efficient functionality, automation features and faster workflows.
By focussing on building engagement and confidence from the start, SHA’s hope to have built a strong foundation for the ongoing Orchard implementation. The event also ensured that Orchard’s consultants are now familiar faces across all of SHA’s departments hopefully easing the transition, building the relationship and ensuring a strong partnership between SHA and Orchard. .
Jay Dudley, Regional Manager at Orchard commented on the success of the event, saying: ‘This ERP project launch sets the scene for what is often a huge undertaking and often can be daunting and disconcerting for businesses and their staff. How Southside approached the day was a revelation and well thought out, combining humour with sensitivity and tact. I was also extremely proud of my Orchard colleagues and how the day was approached in true partnership. We’re absolutely over the moon to have Southside on board and look forward to working closely with them over the years to come.’
This positive start is set to be followed up continuously throughout the implementation stage with regular updates, events and opportunities for SHA colleagues to engage within the specification, configuration and build SHA’s new Orchard system.