Purchasing software is mandatory, and knowing what you need to before you go into the deal is essential. Everything that sounds good isn’t necessarily so. The thing that you need to know about procurement software is that it is not straight forward. There are different companies, different options, and different levels of service. So wise spending for SMBs is important. Here is where you decide whether or not you will buy or build. It is going to function how you want it to. Still, having all of the details that need to be involved is important too. There are definitely a few rules that you need to keep in mind.
#1 Rather than focusing solely on the initial price look at the price for ownership in general. There are integration fees, maintenance fees and variety of potential costs to evaulate. These long term sums have to be considered. Your immediate needs seem more important now, but not focusing on the big picture can really cost your company down the road. This is definitely one of those “you get what you pay for” scenarios. You could end up with a lot of unexpected cost as well as awful integration.
#2 Buy what you need now, but make sure it will evolve with you as your business grows. If you are not focusing on the future of your business, then you are throwing away money. Do not use the software as a temporary fix. It can work for you for the long haul. Think of it as an investment. No matter what your budget, it only makes sense to get something to last. Once your customer base has expanded your needs will still be there. The last thing that you need is to be running multiple systems or to have no system at all.
#3 Many times you hear that first impressions are everything. Well in this case don’t count on it! A lot of things can be dressed up in a fancy box and be very disappointing once the full realization of what it contains is revealed. Your purchasing manager or other staff that will be using the software may not have an IT background so the appeal of simple, user-friendly software may weigh heavily in your mind. You have to know the software is going to work for you both now as well as later, even if it means going to the more expensive options. You can have a balance between user-friendly and complex expansion capabilities.
#4 What about training and tech support? That is as essential as the software itself. That is one downfall of software you buy off the shelf. You are not getting this essential support. You will end up spending more than you wanted through having to outsource training to another provider. The long term results are not good. Organization suffers and eventually you are back to square one. It is always the best choice to deal with a professional who can support all of your needs both now and in the future.