The Nuts and Bolts of Implementing State Solutions with PrimeroEdge 

There can be a lot of anxiety around the idea of straying away from familiar processes. We’ve all heard someone say, “This is how it’s always been done,” when challenged with a new idea or approach. This common conception is often used as a crutch to avoid the stress of learning something new, even if the result will ease the overfull plates in the office. Luckily, implementing something new for your organization doesn’t need to be stressful—and it can even be easy and exciting! PrimeroEdge has a broad suite of solutions for state agencies that have proven to increase efficiency and an experienced team of project managers to assist in rolling the new processes out to your staff and the SFAs every step of the way. 

Choosing the Solutions that are Right for You 

The state agency office is the nucleus of school nutrition for the entire state. Fortunately, state agencies have the autonomy to choose what software solutions best fit the needs of the state regarding population, scope, and complexity. PrimeroEdge is on the cutting edge of software that simplifies the SFAs’ meal counting and claiming processes, streamlines the many arms of the administrative reviews, makes sense of the USDA Food catalogs and truck building process for food distribution, and more. During the sales process, our team will work with you to decide what makes the most sense for your state and provide in-depth demos for anything you are interested in seeing specifically catered to you. Sometimes, biting off more than you can chew will derail a project before it leaves the station. Our solutions team will work closely with you to avoid this and help you hone in on the perfect path to start your journey with PrimeroEdge. This will increase the chances of success and lay a foundation for future opportunities for expansion within the PrimeroEdge suite.

Project Manager for Every Step of the Way 

Once an official agreement is signed and in place, we can hit the ground running! With a kickoff meeting that brings all stakeholders to the table, your project manager will present a custom approach created for your state agency. In the meeting, we will cover the detailed timeline from start to finish, delegate roles and submission assignments to get the ball rolling, and ensure that your PrimeroEdge environment is set up to begin customizing and configuring just as quickly. From there, we schedule weekly project meetings and monthly stakeholder meetings that help keep us on task and the project to plan. Our team always leads transparently and ensures the data we request to configure your environment is clear and intentional. As we find ourselves making headway in the project in the following weeks and months, we track the project in an online project management software that your team can access at all times. You can see in real-time where the project has been and where it is headed. You can also find contact information for all project stakeholders, a complete list of project milestones specific to your state’s account, all recorded training sessions, and much more. At any time, your PrimeroEdge project manager can assist with anything you may not understand and provide answers to questions about the project—large or small.

Approaching Your Unique Operations 

The software requirements for nationwide school nutrition programs may be as unique as the 50 states. While our product and development teams have worked hard to create off-the-shelf products that work for most states, there will inevitably be a point in the project’s implementation when your state wants to add a report, change some verbiage or something else that will help to make the software feel more useable and your own. In that event, we have a simple change request process that will allow you to detail your desired change and receive back a full assessment, including the associated price, time to develop, and implementation goal date. Once approved by both parties, these change requests are built into the existing project plan and can be tracked by all parties from start to finish.

Customized Training and Continued Care 

Regardless of the software solution we are implementing, PrimeroEdge will create custom training sessions for all functionality required by state agency staff. These trainings are held virtually and recorded for posterity so anyone who joins your team mid-implementation can review them and catch up to speed. We also create custom Train-the-Trainer sessions for any functionality to be used by the SFAs. These sessions are meant to help the state agency create training sessions for their SFAs so all anticipated questions can be easily answered. After implementation of the software is complete and users have completed all assigned training, PrimeroEdge transitions all future support to our Customer Care Specialists.

If there is one thing you can bet on, it’s that forging a relationship with PrimeroEdge for a state solution will surpass all your expectations. Our team consists of many former state agents like yourself who know how hard juggling all the moving parts of school nutrition can be. It’s never too late to leave the “way it’s always been done before” in the past. Let us help you into an easier tomorrow! Contact us today for a demo of any products you are interested in.

About the Author: Benjamin Wetherbee

Benjamin Wetherbee received his Bachelor of Arts degrees from the University of Wisconsin—Stevens Point in 2012 prior to relocating to Denver, CO. He spent eight years working for the State of Colorado in different facets of School Nutrition, most recently as a Senior Consultant specializing in School Meal Eligibility and Provision Programs. He joined the PrimeroEdge team in July 2022 as a Project Manager for State Solutions. He finds the best way to assist school nutrition professionals in easing the administrative burden is bridging the gap between the student and the meal benefit through efficient use of technology.