Selecting S1000D software is an area where we spend a tremendous amount of time here at Tech Data World.
Often our clients are not sure of the questions that they must ask any potential vendor, nor do they know where the hidden pitfalls lay and then potentially ending up with the software that is not right for them or their projects.
I always kick-off with telling my client to set to one side budget discussions, at least in the early phase. We should not be basing our decision wholly and solely on a price tag. Whilst essential, there are ways we can drive down ownership costs of software.
I like to break down the discussion topics into four main categories. This way, we can focus on what we must have versus what is nice to have —kicking off with features and functionality, developing a matrix and score-card of what is a much and what is not so important.
We are then moving into the technology stack and architecture of the software landscape. We need to understand any reliance on Open Source or third party components that may not be obvious when we cut a Purchase Order.
Commercial & legal items come in third, what are we going spend on this software and how much will it cost us to maintain over the life of our projects and products? We will find ourselves spending as much in support and maintenance as we did on the initial purchase in a short period.
Finally, we must ask for references and understand the company itself. Are they able to support us? Are we being supported via a third party? Is it someone with whom we wish to do business? Understand their culture, their vision of the future and product road-maps.