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How Do You Properly Compare Software Vendor Quotes?

Written by Laura Schomaker

March 10, 2023

It’s time to implement an ERP solution at your company. You’re excited by the possibilities and you’ve received a pile of ERP quotes from vendors. How do you properly compare software vendor quotes to ensure you get the best solution at the best price for your company? Here are some tips that can help guide the process.

Know Your Business Needs Inside and Out

As a starting point, ask yourself: What exactly is it that my business needs from ERP? If you don’t have this information, you can’t make an accurate assessment of the ROI you can get out of any solution.

It’s a good idea to bring together your team and/or departments and start identifying the gaps you are currently experiencing in workflows or with existing solutions. These can include:

  • Lack of collaboration
  • Lack of data visibility
  • Unclean or inconsistent data
  • Analog workflows that lead to human error and inconsistencies

With this information compiled, you will assess every ERP solution on your list properly. One ERP solution may look more affordable, but it may not be worth it if it doesn’t give you what you need to excel.

Know What Goes into a Quote

Of course, if you’re looking at a quote and don’t know what should be there, you’re setting yourself for failure from the start. Make sure that you understand the key points vendors should include in an ERP quote. These include:

  • Pricing/subscription models
  • Details on the ERP solution
  • Details on implementation, including timeline
  • Scope of training and any associated fees
  • Ongoing maintenance, and any associated fees

If it appears a vendor didn’t include something, check the fine print!

Run a SWOT Analysis on Vendors

Just as you may have done when drafting your own business plan, you can run a SWOT analysis to compare key data points between vendors. Points to look at can include:

  • The solution’s cost structure
  • A solution’s strengths and weaknesses
  • Which industries or niches a solution/vendor serves
  • How flexible and scalable a solution is

Visualizing these pros and cons in a matrix or chart can make it much easier for you to understand what value you will get out of a particular ERP solution.

Talk to the Vendors

A great last step is to chat with all the vendors. If one doesn’t ‘play nice’ and isn’t focused on collaboration, that’s a red flag right there. An ERP vendor should be ready and willing to work with you to find the right solution for your business and even customize a solution directly to your needs.

Now that you’ve demystified that stack of ERP quotes and singled out the one you want to go with, you’re almost ready to begin your all- important implementation project. Congratulations! Here are 10 expert tips to keep everything on budget

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