Whether you’re buying software for the first time or upgrading to a new tool, we’ll guide you through the process to ensure a successful purchase.
- First, we’ll provide an overview of the steps you’ll need to take to buy software.
- Then, we’ll help you identify key challenges software can solve.
- Last, we’ll help you narrow down your options in what can often be an overwhelming sea of choices.
Follow these steps for a smooth software purchase
Buying software can feel like a marathon, and it can be easy to get overwhelmed or lose your place along the way. That’s why we’ve created this checklist to help you stay on track from start to finish.
Identify the challenges software will solve
Start by having a candid discussion with your team about what processes they feel need improving.
You’ll also want to be on the lookout for growing pains that software can help your business solve. If you’re sharing logins, or losing work because of poor organization, you might need to begin your search.
For some more information about the steps you should take, watch our short video about the topic:
We’ve created two simple surveys you can use to pick your team’s brain about what they hope to gain from new software.
- Download and print whichever template applies best to your situation, and hand it out to team members to fill out and return. Or, copy the questions into a survey tool to gather feedback electronically.
- Once you’ve collected the results, compile common themes, and set up a meeting with the team members who will use the software. Establish which software capabilities are must-haves as you start to look for vendors.
Are you a team of one? You can still use the questions in the surveys to identify your most pressing software needs.
If you think you need to replace your current software
Figure out what works and doesn’t by getting feedback from who uses it most: your team.
If you’re buying software for the first time
Start by having an open discussion with your team, even if it’s just a few people. Guide that discussion and figure out exactly what challenges you need to address by using this form.
Choosing the right software
Once you’ve identified your key software requirements, it’s time to move onto evaluating software options and talking to vendors. Approaching these discussions with a plan will keep your software search focused and set you up for success.
If you’re wondering where to start when it comes to talking to vendors, this quick video will help you out:
We’ve created a software comparison chart you can use to score the vendors on your shortlist against your requirements. Once you’ve seen demos and filled out the chart, you’ll be able to compare the options side-by-side, see which software scored highest, and decide which is right for your business.
Buy the right software quickly
Once you’ve narrowed it down to one software vendor, you’re ready to begin negotiations. Make sure you come equipped with a series of questions to ensure you aren’t getting stuck with a contract that you’ll pay for down the line.
For some information about what types of questions to ask or things to look out for, take a look at this short video:
Don’t stop once you have momentum
Finding the right software solution for your business is challenging, and the sheer volume of choices can stop you in your tracks. We’re here to keep that from happening.