What is PSA Software?

June 1, 2020 Matthew Corey

professional services automation (PSA) software

PSA software can help smaller firms to compete on an equal footing with larger firms, even in a troubled economy, but you might not yet understand what a PSA is. Let’s take a closer look at what a PSA does, and why so many firms have grown to depend on their PSA solution, not just for day-to-day management but also for revenue growth. 

What does professional services automation software do?

PSA is a kind of software that helps run your firm. It’s short for professional services automation software. A PSA oversees your staff’s time and resources, as well as your revenue, managing operations in your firm’s back office and front office. When you use a PSA, you no longer need multiple software packages to track time, billing, and projects, all of which is bundled into a PSA solution. Across many different industries, firms use PSA software to streamline their existing business processes, using their staff and resources as efficiently as possible. 

In short, PSA software lets you see how your firm uses its current and future resources, whether that’s time, people, or money. A PSA manages your resources by showing you a visual representation of your firm’s projects and processes. From there, you can see how making changes to those projects would influence your firm’s bottom line. You should know that PSA tools are built to give you more granular control over how your firm operates. In fact, for many firms, using PSA software is the first step to becoming more profitable. 

Why do professional services firms use PSA software?

Firms invest in PSA software because it’s a single tool to manage all your processes for time and expense, for billing and invoicing, and for resource management. Before PSAs, a firm would need multiple tools for all of those processes, while a PSA can do all of things in one software solution. That gives you a lot of insights into what’s happening at your firm. Any good PSA will give you business insights, at a glance, into what’s happening in your firm. But the best PSA software does much more than that. The best PSA tools will show your firm where to make improvements.

When your PSA software has information about your staff’s hours, tasks, and projects, you not only see how efficiently your firm operates, but you can also see where your firm can do better. You see, a lot of PSAs include a tool called a Gantt chart, which enables you to rearrange tasks, projects, and processes so that your firm operates as efficiently as possible. If you need to make changes to your firm’s operations, a Gantt chart shows you how those changes would impact your available resources, and you can make changes directly in your PSA software.

How exactly do firms use PSA software, every day?

A PSA software needs your firm’s data to perform at its best. Thankfully, your firm already has a lot of available data that would help a PSA to understand your business processes. That includes data about what people are working on, who is working on what, and which resources their work is consuming. Once you’ve integrated your PSA with your financial software (like Quickbooks, Sage Intacct, or Lacerte), and with your CRM service (like Salesforce), you’ll have a global view of where your money is going––and why. That’s a degree of control that other tools can’t give you.

The best PSAs will use your firm’s data to help you plan projects, assign staffers to those projects, and see the financials tied to each project, staffer, and resource. From there, a PSA helps you make changes to how you allocate project resources, and shows you the potential value of making those changes. What’s more, PSA tools live on the cloud rather than on a computer in your office, so all of your critical data is stored safely online, and so you can manage your firm from anywhere, even if your staff is working remotely.

What should your firm expect from using a PSA?

As soon as your PSA is connected to your accounting software, then you immediately have more control over how your firm manages its resources. You can see all the way into the core of what makes your firm work at peak efficiency. So your firm should expect a PSA to be your firm’s singular tool for deep insights and managerial control. You can even use a PSA to give your clients a window into your firm’s processes, providing them with a great reason to trust your firm, and to build a long-term business relationship.

But the simple fact is that a PSA can reduce the cost of doing business. Since a PSA software is made to automate many of your firm’s manual processes, it helps you save your staff’s time, and it minimizes your expenses. Look for a PSA that can communicate with the accounting software you use, that can be customized to fit exactly what your firm requires, and that can give you the business insights that your firm demands. When you have the right PSA that can make the most of your resources, and that is the best fit for your firm, then you can make the best decisions for your firm to grow.

To see all the features that PSAs have to offer, check out our PSA 101 guide, and start making plans to improve your firm’s profitability.

What's inside the guide: 

  • Key benefits of PSA software
  • Difference between PSA and Project Management tools
  • KPIs uncovered with PSA software
  • Strengthening workflows through consolidated tech
  • Steps to finding the right PSA software for your firm

Ready to get started? Request a demo of BigTime’s PSA software, today, and see just how far your services firm can go.

About the Author

Matthew Corey

Digital Marketing Specialist

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