4 ways to check a software package is designed for your business
Digital transformation often entails purchasing software solutions, no matter whether your business is big or small. And since every company has its own set of needs, it’s not always easy to decide whether a technology is suited to your situation.
Did you know that you can ask for a preview of a new software package or solution to help you in your purchase decision? Of course, each company has its own policy on previews. That is why it is crucial to find out the ins and outs of making such a request. What should you expect? Is it normal to pay for a sample at a preliminary stage? The information below can help you get the most out of taking this approach.
4 ways to get an preview of a software solution before buying it
- Demonstration: This step is fairly standard among solution providers. It’s a generic presentation of a product’s features. A success story or fictional case is used to show the solution’s capabilities under specific circumstances. Some companies offer personalized demonstrations, using a sample of the customer’s data.
Generic demonstrations are usually free, but you may have to pay for the personalized type.
- Proof of concept: Proof of concept is aimed at showing the feasibility of the chosen solution to persuade the customer to buy it. In contrast to the demonstration, the proof of concept uses the client’s data or environment. So it may require more work, especially for developers, to produce a personalized sample based on what the customer is asking for. For example, if you wanted to digitize your invoices, you would get a sample of a digital invoice based on your data.
There are no general rules when it comes to paying for proof of concept, as it depends on the customer’s initial request and of course the company supplying it. But it’s not unusual to have to pay for proof of concept.
- Prototype: The prototype goes a step further than the proof of concept. In addition to demonstrating the feasibility of the solution, it also shows how to use it. In most cases, you would get a chance to work with the tool.
Since this stage tends to be more advanced than proof of concept, the prototype—or what is also referred to as the pilot project—is typically a user-fee service.
- Workshop or support: After getting the proof of concept and feeling confident that the project is feasible, the customer can request a specialized consultation to ask any questions about the process that was set up. It’s an opportunity to discover the technical challenges and to determine the scope of the project. The customer can also get recommendations on the tools to apply and how to go about it. But this stage still precedes the final solution.
Since consulting is involved, there’s a fee attached in most cases.
As you can see, several tools are available to help you make your decision when buying new technological solutions. At Objectif Lune, we’re well aware that there’s nothing better than getting an actual sample to make the best decision. That’s why we’ve listed all of our options in a brochure in order for you to confirm your purchase decision.