Buying software is easy. Living with the wrong choice is hard.
Selecting software in today’s interconnected and dynamic world presents challenges that only some organisations are genuinely prepared for.
In the past, software applications mainly operated independently of other systems. However, evaluating the suitability of software today often extends well beyond the core application and into its eco-system of connected apps, operating environments, support structures, security, and numerous other considerations.
Organisations can only expend so much energy on changing software applications. Outsourcing the selection process reduces the time lost from client-facing activities. While a successful selection means the process only needs to occur once.
Unbiased advice. Everyone has an opinion based on experience and personal bias. Employing a proven software selection process through a vendor-neutral external advisor can help all stakeholders see the bigger picture more clearly.
Skip some iterations. Changing software platforms can be evolutionary, but this takes time and money. Short-cut the process with experienced advice, so you can save time and focus instead on embedding the change and leveraging it to make a difference to your organisation.
Expertise. If your team is unfamiliar with the software selection process, it may be beneficial to outsource the project to a consultant with experience with different software types. This way, you can be sure that you are making the best decision for your organisation.
While outsourcing the selection process is great for some companies, it’s not always a perfect fit. Outsourcing the selection process has its ups and downs. They include:
There are a few key factors to consider when deciding whether to outsource your software selection process or keep it in-house.
Sometimes, it makes more sense to keep the software selection process in-house. These considerations include:
Project size and scope – While outside consultants may suit large or complex software selection projects, you can keep smaller projects with fewer moving parts in-house.
Budget – Outsourcing can be costly, so keeping the selection process in-house may be better if you’re rich in time but low on funds.
Funding requirements – Outsourcing software selection means giving up a chunk of your budget to an external agency. Your organisation needs to decide if it is comfortable with that arrangement.
Time frame – You’re on the clock when you outsource software selection. You have to pick a solution and get it implemented. If timing matters, in-house teams can take their time to find the perfect solution and get it implemented on your schedule.
Expertise – Outsourcing software selection means finding the right experts. In-house teams may have the networks you need to find top-notch solution providers.
The decision of whether to outsource or keep software selection in-house is a challenging one. There’s no one-size-fits-all solution to choosing the right software for your organisation, as many different factors go into the decision.
However, there are some key factors that you can consider to help you make the best decision for your company.
When making this decision, consider the size and scope of your project, as well as your company’s budget and timeline. Keep the process in-house if you have the time and resources to select software. However, outsourcing may be the best option for you if you are short on time or resources.