Software as a Service

When you’re trying to choose and implement the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system as well as Customer Relationship Management (CRM) HR/Payrollor another system for your business it is important to keep these tips in mind to make the selection process more effective.

1.) Create a Long List If a particular software program isn’t included on your Long List, it will never be considered! Include as many software options as you can at the beginning your process. You will want to include general ERP software vendors as well as those who specifically target your vertical industry. Vertical market software is likely DevOps metrics to offer greater functionality in a specific field than other vendors. Many organizations fall into the trap of taking a look at just a few of the big name vendors without taking into consideration other ones which aren’t as well known but have great products suitable for the specific situation.

2.) Focus Requirements on the differentiating Criteria – Although there may be hundreds, or even thousands of functional requirements, the criteria that make the difference between eliminating and selecting the software provider can typically include on two or three pages. We refer to these requirements as “Differentiating Criteria.” Use these criteria to eliminate Software from your Long List quickly and objectively. This will make it easier to save time and help you focus on the essential requirements.

3) Select the Value Added Reseller/Implementation Partner – Many of the major mid-market software vendors sell their software through local and national Value Added Reseller’s (VARs) including Microsoft, Sage, Infor, Epicor, and others. These VARs will demo or sell and then implement the software. Since they are not tied to the software maker It is possible that there are many VARs in your geographic area which sell the same software. They each have strengths and weaknesses. In fact, the selection of the right VAR can be the difference between success and failure of your plan.

Larger Tier 1 and Tier 2 vendors like SAP, Oracle, and Lawson provide direct implementation support and also have independent implementation partners you can use. These partners could be more familiar with your industry , and also have lower rates for billing than the vendor’s internal implementation team. Make sure that you consider all of your implementation options.

4.) Hold Scripted Demos Once you have narrowed down to a limited list of three software vendors, it is recommended to use a scripted software demonstration procedure. The scripted demo will force the software vendor or VAR their demo to show how they will solve your particular business requirements. This also lets you compare the vendors equally. It is important to allow enough time for the vendor’s presentation of some of the bells and whistles which might be interesting.

5) Negotiate the Contract When you make your decision to purchase the software you’ll have to sign three contracts with the vendor: Software License, Implementation Services, and Maintenance. If you decide to purchase a application that operates on the Software as a Service (SaaS) model you will have an Service Level Agreement (SLA). It is important to negotiate the price, but be sure to negotiate details of the business aspect in the agreement as well. The software vendors write the contracts to protect their interests You must bargain to protect your rights in the agreement.

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