I’m back again to talk about software. I don’t want to compare any application, today I want to focus mainly on the strategy to be adopted to activate a successful software selection methodology.
Which are the drivers we need to consider when we have to choose a piece of software for our businesses? The “mother of all questions” is:
DO WE KNOW ENOUGH OF YOUR BUSINESSES IN ORDER START A CONSISTENT SOFTWARE SELECTION?
I see you smiling, I know, looks a so obvious question with an absolutely obvious answer, but in professional career I’ve seen so many times, interviewing stakeholders that their global business Knowledge is generally incomplete and knowledge is “stored” in closed silos and unfortunately not fully distributed cross the organizations.
The first questions related to each software solution generally are:
- We are absolutely sure that we’ve not already available the perfect software solution already in house?
it’s not a joke, I saw many times initiatives aborted after months/years of work just because it has been ignored to ask the right person/team.
- Do we have fully analysed the requirements that the new application solution must have
- The new solution can be interfaced with my global existing application scenario?
- It scalable to manage business grow?
- Do we have consistent stakeholders sponsorships to persuade this initiative?
- Due increasing global markets: It’s able to support internalizations?
I add now some additional financial questions
- Do we have budget for this initiative
- Do we have a clear vision of the benefits and related costs of the initiative?
- Do we have clear ROI figures?
- TCO is in line with our budget?
- Do we have a clear forecast of the OP-EX and CAP-EX we will have to consider in the project?
- Do we need to add additional personnel resources like project managers, consultants, programmers, engineers,..?
The Goal we want to achieve
The goals we want to achieve, for sure is a smooth project executed on the planned time, deployed exactly like planned.
Ok, this in theory is the goal of any initiative, but between theory and practical processes we have several steps to be completed and for sure a lot of of discussions, meetings and documentation to be produced.
Keep documented, Keep updated, Stay tuned!!!
Software solutions are always more sophisticated, powerful and full of features than in the past. This requires that the methodology to analyse each solution candidate requires a consistent methodology, a common (cross organization) method to analyse the solutions, an equal solid methodology to document it and more important to adopt workflow, content management and social project management solutions in order to keep posted everybody in the project team.
Goal is to have all the most updated information spread to everybody in the working groups and it’s strongly recommended to adopt mechanisms/software task management solutions, like Asana, just for example to simplify the knowledge sharing processes.
In the part 2 of this article I’ll cover the vendor selection process and the methology to use RFI documents to shortlist what we really need!
Please let me know your thoughts, concerns, suggestions and I’ll integrate your feedback in the next parts.