No business today can exist without at least a few pieces of technology and software. It makes it easier to communicate and connect with customers, it is the easiest way to keep track of inventory, and it’s the best way to deal with budgetary needs and finances, among many other things.
That doesn’t mean all software is created equal. Today, you have dozens of choices, no matter what kind of software you’re considering. How do you know if making the switch to a new program is the right decision for your business?
Will It Make Using Other Software Easier?
One of the first things you should consider is whether or not the new software will make using other software and tech in the office easier. For example, if you and your employees regularly use Office programs, like Microsoft Word and PowerPoint, you should consider something like Office 365 intranets. Because it integrates with Microsoft programs, it makes using those programs easier, while providing you with many other features.
If the software you’re considering won’t necessarily make using your existing software easier, it should at least not make it harder. That means it can integrate easily with your other programs, and with a little training, it’s relatively easy to switch between programs, even if they aren’t integrated together.
Will You Have Support After It Has Been Installed?
Training is extremely important for every workplace. Just because you choose a high-quality software program that should improve the operation of your business doesn’t mean it will. If you and your employees don’t know how to use it properly, you won’t get the most out of everything it has to offer.
Make sure you are fully supported during the training process, which might mean having someone from the software company come to train your employees, or making sure a member of your team is knowledgeable enough to do the training. It also means making sure you have access to continued support. If you have questions weeks, months, or even years after you have installed the software, the company should be willing and able to provide you with quick and easy support.
Does It Have Everything You Need?
It may seem like a no-brainer to ask if the software has everything you need, but it’s important to dig into the details of what that really means. You need to separate true needs from wants, as it will help you narrow down your software options and ensure you get what you actually need.
Whether you’re choosing sales software, financial software, or something else, a few things you might want to consider looking for when choosing software include:
- It’s easy to integrate with the tools you already use
- It matches your business image with a professional interface that looks good
- It fits into your budget
- It replaces other software, streamlining what you have to use
What Does It Take to Maintain the New Software?
Software updates, although annoying, are extremely important to make sure your software works properly. It’s important to choose software that provides regular updates, even if it means speaking directly to the software creators to discover how often and when updates are rolled out.
If you want to get the most out of your software, there are also going to be things you need to do to maintain the software. That includes making sure antivirus scans are done regularly on your computer, as well as maintaining a firewall, deleting unwanted programs, and more. Ask the developer what they recommend in order to keep your software running in tip-top shape. If it’s too much, or if it’s not enough, for your needs, look for a different program.
How Will It Affect Your Existing Data?
Managing files and data on your computer systems isn’t easy, but it is important. The last thing you want to do is lose important data, and you especially don’t want to compromise important information and leave your company open to hackers.
Consider how the new software will affect your existing data. Will your data be integrated easily, so it can be removed from other systems? Does it access data from other systems without storing the data? Looking into how the software works with your data will help you make the right choice for your business.
Don’t just switch software for the sake of switching software! Make sure it’s worth your time and it’s worth the money before you make the switch by considering the items on this list.