The expansion of digital means of communication and processing has revolutionized almost every bit of our lives. Software is now indispensable for any business with any real ambition to grow. It doesn’t matter if it’s an accounting tool or a CRM, you’ll always find yourself looking for the latest and best software that your business can use.
The software you use should cover the needs of the department that will be using it the most. Your employee’s needs, customer satisfaction, and overall performance should all be synchronized to help you grow and maintain your business. New business owners have a hard time finding the perfect software, understandably, because they struggle to try to juggle the different responsibilities of managing a small business.
We’ve come up with a brief guide to help you understand the deciding factors of picking the right software.
Assessing Employees’ Needs
You can’t choose a software that doesn’t suit the dynamic and context of your working environment. The number of employees you have is one of the most important elements when you’re choosing software, as it’s essential for handling the right load of work. You also need to establish the environment your employees work in. Software for employees who work from home is significantly different from software used in offices, not to mention project sites and clientele meeting platforms.
Your employees are probably using different platforms to communicate and work. If you’re looking for the perfect software for your business, it has to be in sync with the platforms your business currently uses, unless you’re looking for a complete revamp. The software you buy may require other employees, namely IT, to handle its operation. But some software vendors offer to handle the technical support and operation of their software.
The phase of shopping for the right software can be exciting and overwhelming; lots of mistakes can be made. The problem with picking the first app or software you see in front of you is the headache of trying to replace it later after it’s fully integrated with your system. If you’re purchasing accounting software, you need to thoroughly consider what the accounting department’s needs. A software tasked of tracking your assets can either relieve your team from stress or become a burden, depending on your choice. No matter how sparkly the rating and scores appear to be, focus on finding something that works perfectly with your line of work, employees, and business goals.
There is no shame in scouting competitors or similar service providers, and finding out the software they’re using. Most of the time, there are software staples that are being used by a multitude of other businesses because they are simply that good. This can save you a lot of time because it will narrow down your options to a smaller pool.
Most of the time, you get what you pay for. This doesn’t mean that free applications and software on the market are useless; they can actually help you define the specific requirements of the software you’re planning on purchasing. According to recent reports, half the new startups in an industry factor in the cost as the main consideration in choosing their software.
It’s a common mistake to choose software just because it’s cheap. Some software may be out of your budget, but sometimes it’s a good decision to choose to pay for an expensive app that pays for itself in the long run rather than a cheap app that will only slow you down
Interviewing Your Vendors
Choosing the wrong software can cost you a lot in terms of money, effort, and time. Sometimes a vendor can look pretty good on paper, for them to only bail on you when you need them. You need to ask your vendors the right questions that can put your mind at ease. Their handling of major problems, consistency of quality, service level agreement and localized needs are all elements that highly matter. There is nothing wrong with asking your vendor how they handled their latest major problem or the readiness of their infrastructure to deliver high-quality performance. If the vendor you settle on is an international vendor, make sure that they have global solutions that circumvent restrictions.
The right software for your business doesn’t have to do miracles. Your own assessment and judgment are very important when you’re choosing software. Don’t fall for high ratings and leave your business’s needs unfulfilled. Take some time to educate yourself and conduct research about the type of software you’re looking to buy, so you can ask your vendors the right questions when you need to.