Business software is an essential part of your operations. These tools keep track of your finances and help you to manage projects, tasks, inventory and budgets. They also automate the most time-consuming processes in the business, improving your underlying productivity so you can grow and scale up.
But with so many different kinds of software and vendors out there, how do you know which ones are the right fit for your app stack? Here are some tips for selecting the best business software for your needs.
We’ll explain how to:
The first step in choosing the right business software is to figure out the particular needs of your business – and where specific software tools are needed in your organisation’s toolbox.
Start by asking these questions:
It might be that you need an accounting solution like Exact Online, Xero, NetSuite, QuickBooks, or Sage to enhance your financial reporting and management. The business may need a project management system such as Trello, Monday and ClickUp to help certain teams track tasks and timelines. If you need greater visibility and control over company and employee spend, then it’s worth looking into an expense management platform like Soldo.
In short, it’s about knowing where you need software support, and how the features and capabilities of an app will help you become a better and more efficient business.
It’s also important to think about budgetary constraints and whether you have the cash to invest in new business software. Any tool you choose has to get the job done in the most effective way – but without subscription costs that end up breaking the bank.
You’ve decided what type of business software you’re looking for. And you’ve mapped out a budget that allows you to purchase the most important tools. The next step is to start researching the different solutions that are currently available on the market.
Read through reviews and customer feedback to get an idea of which products may be worth investigating further. Talk to peers from your network to see if they have any recommendations. And visit tech conferences to get demos and hands-on overviews of the apps in your short list.
Make sure to research:
By doing your homework, you get a clear overview of each product. This makes it much easier to compare each solution side-by-side before you make any purchase decisions.
You wouldn’t buy new clothes without trying them on for size. And the same applies to the business software you intend to sign up for. Getting hands-on with the product before you buy is essential, and can stop you making a purchase that fails to deliver on its promise.
Most software vendors will offer free trials or demos of their products. This is your chance to get familiar with the features, the user interface (UI) and the user experience (UX) before committing to a subscription plan. Take advantage of these opportunities.
Test driving different solutions helps you see:
Doing your research and getting some hands-on time with the product is all time well spent. But, eventually, there’s a decision to be made – are you going to buy this software or not?
Deciding whether to sign on the dotted line is a big decision. Ultimately, it’s about weighing up two different sides of the scale:
If the advantages the business software delivers outweigh the monthly costs and onboarding time, you’re probably onto a winner. But, as with all changes to your operational systems, there’s only one way to find out if this is your new software saviour. That’s to put it to use and gauge what return on investment (ROI) you get on a day-to-day, month-by-month basis.
Selecting the right business software takes patience, research and the correct due diligence – but following these steps should put you on the path towards finding the perfect fit. When you have the right tools in your app stack, you give your organisation the best possible chance of creating a meaningful competitive advantage.