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There are many factors to consider when investing in new software – especially when it comes to a new CRM system for your entire organisation.
If you’re anything like us, you’ll want to understand the product or service in its entirety before you commit to purchasing. Regardless of the CRM you’re considering, there are key questions to ask your vendor to maximise value and future-proof your organisation.
It’s best to find out up-front if the system you’re considering to purchase can match your ambitions. Is it flexible enough to accommodate the new service you’re working on? Is it scalable enough to continue performing when your business has grown because of the excellent work you do?
Perhaps the system does not currently accommodate for the new service you’re working on, but will it in the months to come? You can discover the answer by asking your potential vendor to see the product roadmap which will show you the upcoming upgrades and continual improvements.
Does this include up-to-date dashboard reporting, will the reports be suitable for your Board of Trustees? Ask for a demonstration of the type of reports you will want from the system.
Does the solution provide native integration into your email, marketing tools and finance system, for example? Ask for a list of available connectors that would be easy to switch on if needed.
At TES, we work to develop long term partnerships with our customers, and we’ve worked with some of our customers for over a decade. Having said that it will give you peace of mind to know that other partners could support your system if required in the future.
On-premise software can often have pricey and lengthy upgrades. Cloud-based technology such as Dynamics 365 offers Software as a Service (SaaS) meaning that you get all upgrades included in your subscription.
It’s important to look out for hidden, on-going subscription or support costs. You don’t want any nasty surprises once you have been through an initial implementation. TES always present a full cost breakdown to ensure that it all makes sense. Always ask if you are not 100% sure of the costs involved.
Will your employees or colleagues across the company like using this system? Sometimes change is not easily adopted so it’s important to consider how your team will respond. Consistent software appearances such as Microsoft’s Unified Interface can really make a difference.
What is the proposed implementation methodology? At TES we always present a clear picture of how your project will work and collaborate with you so that you are happy and confident in the process.
What ongoing support will you receive? Can you get vital support when you need it? Understanding your support package is something that shouldn’t be overlooked.
Total Enterprise Solutions are a Microsoft Gold Partner and we have been working in the charity and non-profit sector for over a decade. We can, of course, share details of how TES can work through these considerations with you so that you can gather a clear understanding of our offering and how we can tailor it to you.
As part of this series of blog articles, we are running a webinar exploring all the elements of the buying journey for a charity focused CRM system as well as a look at our solution on the Microsoft platform. You can register for our upcoming webinar.