6 Ways to Select the Right Business Software

We have entered the zettabyte era, an astonishing fact that represents the vast amount of data being transmitted, connected and consumed. Companies and organizations are being challenged to analyze this massive consumption of information – it’s extremely hard to do that manually, in most cases, even not possible.

That being said, the importance of using the right business software for managing daily operations, monthly or yearly reports, gaining insights on strategy development, or monitoring key performance indicators that can directly affect a company’s profit – is becoming an invaluable asset for any sustainable business effort.

In this article, we will discuss the most relevant ways to choose the right data analysis tool, which can help companies gather and leverage their data in the most productive way.

1.) Ask questions

As with any crucial decision, asking the right questions is the first step to take and examine. Why a business software should be implemented is the first question a company should ask. In today’s digital economy, online tools have become a standard for carrying almost every business operation. It is no longer important if software should be implemented, but which one, and how to choose?

Depending on how much data a company manages, which departments will have access to the software, what are the essential growth objectives a business wants to achieve – all of these questions play a crucial role into choosing the right business software. Since data management has become an invaluable business process, it is crucial for any company to assess the values that the implementation can achieve. Whether the software is intended to use as an umbrella tool for collecting data, creating management reports or financial monitoring – the goal must be clearly defined before taking the next steps.

2.) Gather data

When all the crucial questions are answered, the next step is to gather important data. Comparing different vendors should be of utmost importance since the implementation of the right software will take a certain amount of time.

The ease of integration and customization to the business’ operational needs to complement and upgrade the company’s strategic and operational objectives, should also be considered since it can provide valuable and cost-efficient solutions. The software is frequently implemented to gather important data on which business owners and employees can create actionable insights. The interpretation of data should be considered as a mean of investigating which crucial points and foresight a software can improve.

Using free trials as a mean of research should be also on the list of priorities. That way a business can identify if the intuitiveness or the offered features accompany organizational goals and bring the desired outcomes.

3.) Calculate costs

By calculating costs, a business can easily filter which financial focal points should be implemented into choosing the right software. As mentioned earlier, when gathering data, different vendors offer different solutions. In the cost-calculation phase, gathered data must be compared to the financial costs a business can afford. A part of that is the value a company can get – consider costs, but pay for value.

4.) Inspect the market

Once all the key factors are taken into consideration, the offer on the market is one of the final steps a company should consider. With many options, be it accounting, business intelligence or project management, different vendors offer different packages, solutions and special features that go hand-in-hand with their price levels. Compiling a list of software tools that seem to match business goals and identifying the exact features will make sure a company doesn’t invest in “shelfware” (software that is bought, not used and end up on shelves).

5.) Communicate with the team

The future users of the software should also present their opinion. This is also another powerful method to help to make the final decision. Getting external opinion (even if they won’t use the software) can provide invaluable perception and insights on features or intuitiveness level that would otherwise stay overlooked.

6.) Decide!

The final step is simple: decide! Once all the crucial information is gathered and analyzed, pros and cons listed, features tested and all the decision stages are taken into a holistic view, the final decision should be made much easier and faster. Being comfortable with the vendor as well as the product should be the final factor important to consider.

Getting valuable insights into your business, visualizing data, establishing benchmarking and eliminating guesswork, business software can help companies to utilize their big data in the most effective way. Since big data is becoming “less an experimental endeavor and more of a practical pursuit within organizations,” with an exponential increase every year, the benefits of implementing software solutions are invaluable in comparison to traditional means of reporting and managing data.

 

Author Bio: Sandra Durcevic is a dedicated writer, content manager, and online marketer at datapine. Passionate about business intelligence, technology, big data, and analytics, she is working in the buzzing startup scene in Berlin, Germany.

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