Software is a crucial component of many businesses, enabling the efficient management of everything from payroll to stock. Whether you’re upgrading your solution or looking to implement one for the first time, this article will provide you with an overview of some of the important considerations. It’s a big investment that will have a big impact on your businesses, so expert advice from a business-focused software developer like GlobalX might be of value.
Buy for the Future
Businesses generally use a software solution for around three years before upgrading. Consider your staff numbers, inventory, customer base, billing systems and all other aspects – how will they grow and change over the next three years? It’s important that you select a software solution that can enable this growth. Choose a solution that can be scaled easily. Investigate the available extensions, add-ons and plug-ins. They might not be necessary now, but may be invaluable in two or three years’ time.
In theory, most business software solutions do the same thing. For example, all accounting platforms will help you manage your accounts. What will differ between these solutions is how the user works with the software to get the result. Chose software that your staff will find easy to use. A user-friendly interface can improve productivity and actually save you business money, so it’s worth considering this at the purchase stage. Ask the provider if they will provide you with a trial. This will enable you to see how you like the interface before you invest your money.
Reputable software companies continually update their solutions. These updates improve performance, add extra features and increase security, limiting the potential for hacks and information leaks. Check the update record for the solution you’re considering – this is often available on the provider’s website. How often are updates made available? What issues are being addressed in each update?
It’s very rare that a software solution will operate without issue. While the provider will generally include customer support, it is important to check the extent of this support. For example, the provider may assist in the installation of updates but consider integration with other software outside their scope. You should choose software that your IT support staff are also comfortable with, as you might be calling on them regularly!
Purchasing software has changed dramatically in recent years. Traditionally, businesses would buy a license that gave them a copy of the software and the right to use it. Many software companies are now employing Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) strategies, where the software remains on the Internet and the business accesses it from there. The provider is at less risk of losing its intellectual property with SaaS, so it is generally cheaper than a license. SaaS is very flexible, allowing business to pay per user (usually on a monthly basis) instead of paying an outright fee. There are benefits to outright purchase; however, you should talk to your IT support team for further insight.
What tips do you have when it comes to finding the right software option for your workplace? Have you had negative or positive previous experiences? Share your thoughts below.