This article provides a methodology for selecting information management software and implementers.
In a recent CMSWire article Deb Lavoy argues that IT’s typical approach to providing enterprise software solutions is not effective. IT often buys complex enterprise software platforms and then starts a “science project”:
Most enterprise software is more like undertaking a science project than buying a product that solves a problem. Organizations buy a “platform” and have their IT departments build the “solution” on it.
Lavoy maintains that the usual IT approach to acquiring and deploying enterprise software is slow, costly, and often ends in project failure. I completely agree. But then how should you select your software products and implementers? Here’s a methodology that I’ve found to be very effective.
The goal of the solution selection process is not to end up with a chosen “tool” but no real idea about what to do next. The goal is of course to get the best solution — but also to use the process as the preseason, so you’ll be as effective as possible when the contract is signed and your implementation clock starts running. This is a different approach than most folks take, whether they are buyers or suppliers, but it’s worth the extra preparation and attention to detail.
1. Develop a “medium” list of candidates.
Many areas of information management – such as the ECM market – have been consolidating for years, so your medium list for products might be pretty lean.