Software Purchases (continued)
Usually, you end up
with two things:
A list of
A set of
examples for how the processes are expected to be supported by the
that you know what the issue is and how you would like to solve it, you go
out and obtain information on the available products in the market and
match their capabilities to your desired solution. You will end up with a
short list of say 3-5 products that solve your issue to various degrees of
satisfaction, which you can use as initial grading criteria.
next step is to look at the financial feasibility of each solution for
your company. This is where additional considerations come in that vendors
don’t necessarily alert you to. In particular, you want to know:
cost is associated with the solution? Do you need new hardware and
expensive operating systems to deploy the solution? Do you need to
purchase other third party products, like Database servers, that are not
included in the software’s purchase price?
vendor support the entire solution or just part of it? For example, some
vendors may not provide database support.
does the solution fit into your current IT environment? Do you need to
implement new technologies that the vendor does not support and your staff
does not have the expertise to maintain?
does or can the solution be integrated with your current solutions?
significant overlap between the new solution and one or more of your
existing ones (i.e. forcing you to re-invest)?
end result is a matrix of decision criteria that helps you make a
qualified choice based on objective views and comparisons between the
may prefer one vendor over another based on previous experiences, you may
like the look and feel of a specific product better than that of another,
you may even like the sales person of one vendor or their expertise better
than the others. These
preferences should, however, take a backseat to the previous list of
criteria. Making software decisions is all about balancing the “must
haves” with the “cool” features and the business need with the
personal preferences. Many companies implement solutions based on the
principal that “if lots of companies have it, it can’t be wrong”. As
a result, they have invested so much into solutions that don’t really
work for them that they are unable to evolve their environments.
best solution is not the one that has the best marketing budget but the
one that fits your business needs the best.
interested, here is a reference to how the big guys do it: http://www.opengroup.org
Copyright (c) 2008 by In Scope-Solutions,