If your organization is considering a replacement or upgrade for your business software solution, you will have to make two of your most important business decisions. If yours is like most firms, you’ve spent plenty of time deciding on the best solution; now it’s time to choose the right partner. Because choosing the right partner is as important as choosing the right software, here are some important recommendations.
Insist on specific industry experience
It’s crucial that the partner you choose has not only knowledge but a
Don’t judge by size
Bigger is better, right? Not necessarily. You might assume that bigger companies have the most experience and reliability. But be aware that size comes with its pros and cons. Larger companies often have more bureaucracy, and often it takes longer to get anything done. A simple request can slow down the whole process while they pursue everyone’s approval. Look for a partner that is large enough to support your needs, but small enough to be efficient.
Larger companies often have standardized solutions and don’t allow for thinking outside the box. You may be pressured to do things their way or be charged extra for a customized solution. Look for a partner that embraces your vision and thinks creatively to give you the exact solution you want.
Larger companies often have less leeway when determining cost. A nimble partner can work with you on meeting your budget, and they can make strategic decisions about their people and their clients. Look for a partner that is focused on doing what’s right for you and within your budget and for whom your success is a priority.
A large organization might offer you more than you need, and charge you for it. Does your project really need a consulting director, a project manager, a consultant, and a development resource? Maybe, but perhaps you have qualified people internally who can fill one or more of those roles? Look out for hidden, unnecessary costs.
If you’re not a “big” client (often well into the millions of dollars), you are going to share resources with other clients, and you may not be a priority. Look for a partner that focuses on working with firms of your size—and solutions required by firms of your size. Look for a partner that treats you like you are their biggest client, even if you aren’t.
Don’t ignore the human factor
You may sometime have been forced to work with someone you didn’t see eye-to-eye with or even with someone you didn’t particularly like or respect. But don’t choose someone like that as a technology partner. You can minimize stress and possible complications if you work well together as a team.
You’ll want your culture and business approach to align with those of your partner. If not, you risk the success of your entire project. Look for a partner that plays well with your team and insist on meeting with those who will work on your project. Don’t assume you know the implementation team because you’ve met the sales team. The sales team will not be working on your project.
Remember, the choice of partner can make the difference between success and failure of your software replacement or upgrade. Know what to look for and choose a partner for success.
If you’re ready to choose the right partner,