Analysis | Software Selection
New software, different problems
Choosing any new application is fraught with difficulty. Aside from the cost, the change to ways of working can be significant. The last thing you need is to end up with a different set of problems.
Beware Solution vendors
The arguments to buy software can quickly stack up:
- Save time
- Increased data
- Data produced more quickly
But without the correct due diligence, the returns on investment may materialise a lot later than anticipated. It’s only afterwards that some things may have been missed in the procurement process.
What gets missed?
What the vendor is selling and the problem you are solving won’t exactly match. There can be differences in understanding about:
- Functionality – maybe it does 80% of what you need, but you thought you had 100% covered.
- Data – different data structures across systems mean that updates in one system can’t be replicated across other systems.
- Process – inadvertent bottlenecks created which require attention.
- Costs – maybe the OpEx costs for a cloud solution weren’t clear at the outset.
There are lots of areas where a product’s ROI can be scuppered without some clear objective way to evaluate it.
A formal procurement procedure
By having a formal process in place you have a more objective chance to evaluate the different options available. Our selection process has the following steps:
- Define the scope of the problem
- Requirements elicitation
- Produce an RFP (with weightings)
- Manage vendor proposals
- Present back results