SMXi: Is your software up to scratch? - Systematic Marketing Ltd
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Is your software up to scratch?

So many organisations invest in software, but don’t always end up with systems that do what’s needed. This might be because:

  • The company has outgrown the capability of a particular software
  • There are several systems, which aren’t all compatible
  • Someone in the company who sold the software didn’t ask the right questions
  • Someone in your company didn’t ask for all the things they needed the software to do

These are all very common issues. The first issue is one that happens – what works for 20 staff, won’t be as effective for 100. If the original software doesn’t have the option to upgrade, it’s often the cause of the second issue.

If someone sees that operational requirements are not being met, they go looking for a solution. The problem is that the solution they’re looking for is often only to address what’s missing, not a complete and integrated solution.

Often this has to do with budgets. However, short-term savings can result in long-term costs as mistakes happen, data has to be input in more than one place and information slips through the gaps.

For example: the sales team enter their data about a discount in the sales software, but the finance department doesn’t see that, so information that would inform the invoicing – and then have to deal with queries and friction when the customer feels something promised has not been delivered.

Starting from scratch

The last pair of problems (above) are interconnected. You would think that the sales people would have the experience to ask the right questions, unfortunately, they’re often only focused on what their package will do – not what it won’t.

In these technology-driven times, you’d also think that the managers and staff in the organisation know to ask for what they need. But often they make assumptions about what is possible and what isn’t. It may even be that someone has already told them that this particular software won’t do certain things, but it’s AMAZING at everything else, so they just accept the shortcomings.

This is a back-to-front approach. New software should always be purchased AFTER the requirements have been laid out and anything that doesn’t tick ALL your boxes should be rejected.

What if there isn’t a solution?

There is always a solution!  It may not be found in an existing software package, but that’s where bespoke software development comes in.

If you’re backing up and thinking about the cost – just take a moment.

  • How much time is wasted inputting data more than once?
  • How much time is wasted dealing with problems that arise from that?
  • How frustrated do your staff get from systems that don’t function as they would like – and does that contribute to work-related stress and sick days off?
  • How many customers who experience a problem as a result of data inaccuracies go to a new supplier?
  • How many frustrated customers relate the tale of their issue to others? And what does that cost you in terms of your reputation?

When you factor all this in, bespoke software stops looking so expensive and can actually end up being much more cost-effective than off-the-shelf packages.

For more information on bespoke systems for your organisation contact us on 020 7100 6010 or email us for more details.

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