With multiple companies offering similar tech solutions and services, it can be challenging to make an informed decision on which to choose. Worry not! These pointers will help you identify key differentiators to determine which provider, product and/or solution is the best for your business.
1. Business value
At this time of uncertainty and change, there is increasing pressure on IT professionals to justify IT spend, especially when the IT department doesn’t inherently bring in money. To some, your department can simply look like an expense and it can be hard to get people to understand that without new and/or improved tech, it would be harder, if not impossible, for the business to function efficiently and drive those revenues.
So when chasing technology, make sure it’s a good fit for the business’s needs, and that the wider company will be able to understand why. When evaluating business value, consider and share the following factors:
• Cost saving opportunities
• Innovation capabilities
• Operational efficiency
• Project delivery timeframe
2. Implementation: Ease, flexibility and compatibility
Take into account of how well your new technology will integrate with your current setup. Ask yourself the following questions:
• Will you need an implementation team?
• Is it easy to teach and learn?
• How long will it take to become full operational?
• How quickly do you need it to be implemented?
• How will it work with your current infrastructure?
Technologies don’t just need to work together, they also need to work with your human workforce. Anything new should be fairly easy to adopt amongst your employees and ensures optimal efficiency. The quicker you can get your team trained and learning the ropes, the more time they can save and get back to their daily tasks.
Implementing technology can be an arduous task, so it’s critical to go in with your eyes wide open and there’s no shame in needing external help.
Pricing is an integral factor to any business decision. 9 times out of 10, whether rightly or wrongly, cost will be the primary decision-making factor. It’s crucial to set a realistic budget when looking into technologies, taking into consideration factors such as current costs, potential ROI and an estimated payback period.
We recommend beginning with an initial ballpark budget and deciding your “must have” features within your price point. After this, you can determine what features will be ideal to add on and what features you do not need. Using this guide, will help you gain a better understanding on the value of your purchase decision.
4. Total cost of ownership (TCO)
Your TCO will assess the long-term value of the purchase to your business. It’s a critical part of your final ROI calculation. Knowing the direct and indirect costs as a result of purchase, will help you determine a realistic TOI over the lifetime of the solution or product. While your monthly cost for example might be £150/month, you may have additional expenses such as training, support, maintenance and upgrades.
Calculating TCO isn’t always monetary. For example, implementing the new technology may result in systems errors or downtime which further results in loss in productivity.
5. Management and support
Don’t assume that once the tech is implemented, the project is over - now is the time to think about how you will manage and maintain it. If your business already has the skillset and time to dedicate to this project, you’re good to go. But in other cases, having a limited IT team or lacking the dedicated time needed to facilitate this project will set you back. In this case, you should consider bringing in an external source who has the experience and skills needed to manage and run this for you.
This will also link back to your costs, if you require an external source to run this project for you, will this be in line with your budget or exceed your initial expected spend? As well as the cost of purchase, you will need to factor in the cost of additional services.
There are many key considerations when it comes to making a decision on purchasing technology, but our research and knowledge finds these are the most important factors. If you’re looking for advice or simply just more information, get in touch today. Alternatively you can reach us on +44 (0)207 605 7890 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.