Picture this: you’ve just signed up for the new, state-of-the-art gym in town, complete with cutting-edge equipment and world-class trainers. But if you’re not breaking a sweat there, all that potential (and your hard-earned membership fee) go to waste.
The principle applies to onboarding new technology. Simply acquiring the latest gadgets, software, or systems isn’t enough—active engagement in the onboarding process is crucial to drive results and maximize your investment.
As a Senior Implementation Project Manager at Paperless Parts, I’ve had the privilege of working with shops of all sizes and backgrounds. Through my experience, I’ve noticed that some shops truly embrace the onboarding process, intentionally prioritizing efficiency, engagement, and proficiency during training so they can maximize their investment and minimize their time-to-value. Here are 7 things that set those customers apart:
1. Setting the Stage for Success
To expedite the onboarding process, be sure that anyone who will be interacting with the platform truly grasps its purpose and value before diving into onboarding. Identify those stakeholders early on, thinking beyond just the estimators—individuals from the administrative team, anyone who receives orders, the outside sales team. Briefing these stakeholders ahead of onboarding will help familiarize them with the upcoming changes, even if they were not part of the initial sales process. By taking a holistic approach and involving everyone who touches the quoting process, you create a comprehensive onboarding strategy that stands the test of time.
2. Committing to the Process
Similar to committing to a gym membership, carving out time in your jam-packed schedule can feel overwhelming, and it’s tempting to revert to old habits or cling to the familiar mantra of “this is the way we’ve always done it.” The constant demands of extinguishing fires, meeting tight shipping deadlines, and promptly attending to customer inquiries leave little room for change. Yet, embracing a new approach requires a collective mental commitment from your team to overcome inertia and launch the process successfully.
3. Strong Communication
At Paperless Parts, we understand the importance of open and frequent communication. Throughout the onboarding journey, we’re committed to providing you with guidance, supplemental materials, and daily updates. It’s no surprise that our most successful onboarding experiences occur when customers actively engage and invest in the success of their teams; by maintaining seamless communication, you ensure that everyone involved is aligned and empowered to overcome any challenges that may arise.
4. Adopting a Partnership Mentality
When you choose Paperless Parts, you’re not just buying a product—you’re gaining a dedicated team that becomes an extension of your own. We’re here to follow through on our commitments and help you achieve your goals. By embracing this partnership mentality, we eliminate barriers and establish a strong foundation of trust. Whether you need assistance in training, finance, or any other area, we’re with you every step of the onboarding process and beyond.
5. Appointing a Strong Champion
Having a solid champion within your organization to lead the way during onboarding can make a world of difference. This individual serves as a project manager, acting as a cheerleader for Paperless Parts and driving enthusiasm among team members. Even in the face of skepticism or resistance to change, a confident and excited champion can rally the troops and ensure a smooth resolution.
Nikki with Paperless Parts customer Stacy Peverly. Stacy was awarded the Paperless Parts Accelerator award for her ability to champion her organization, EPTAM Rapid Launch Center, through their onboarding experience.
During the onboarding process, it’s important to assign at least one person responsible for holding your team accountable (this ties back to the role of the champion). Instead of passively exploring the platform, this person can provide targeted assignments that feel purposeful and less overwhelming. For example, after a training session, they might ask everyone to quote a part in the system and bring their feedback to the next session. This approach fosters engagement, ownership, and active participation.
7. Embracing the Value of On-Site Visits
While digital communication is essential, we shouldn’t underestimate the value of face-to-face interactions. On-site visits allow us to accomplish more in just two days than what could take months of remote communication. We can collaborate in real-time, and these visits also help forge strong and lasting relationships between our teams. By spending dedicated time together, we establish a foundation of trust, strengthen our partnership, and truly align our goals.
If you’re interested in having our team visit your shop, don’t hesitate to ask!
Nikki and Paperless Parts team members Colin and Dakota at a recent on-site visit with new customer RCO Engineering Inc.
A Personalized Partnership
We understand that implementing a new system can be daunting. Rest assured, we have meticulously planned the onboarding process to accommodate your schedule and minimize disruption. We’ll work closely with you to create a personalized calendar, allowing you to allocate a few hours each week for the transition. Our goal is to ensure that onboarding doesn’t monopolize your work life; instead, it feels manageable, meaningful, and achievable.
Embracing technology and overcoming associated fears is no small feat. But luckily, you don’t have to face the onboarding journey alone. Our dedicated team is here to guide and support you every step of the way.
To learn more about Paperless Parts’ implementation and onboarding process, visit our website today.
Nikki Champagne joined the Paperless Parts team in early 2022. With a strong background in guiding organizations through the onboarding process, Nikki has demonstrated her expertise in driving efficiency, engagement, and proficiency during training to maximize investment and minimize time-to-value. Her ability to foster strong partnerships and ensure seamless communication has led to numerous successful onboarding experiences for our customers. Nikki’s dedication to helping shops achieve their goals makes her a trusted partner and invaluable resource.