In college, there was an introduction to Marketing class that required all of us to give two presentations during the semester. Presentations are a lot of work to prepare for, and were over with in a very short period of time. I hated the preparation, but I was always happy to have the presentation completed, because that meant I would have a couple of classes where the rest of my classmates were giving their presentations, and I didn’t have to have any assignments due in the class. It was time that I could use prepping for other classes or just enjoying the break.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way with an ERP demo. You may not be the one giving the presentation, but there is still plenty that will need to be done before, during, and after the demo. The vendor software demonstration is a critical part of the ERP software selection process, according to Rick Cook of erpsearch.
Here are some tips on navigating the ERP demonstration process:
1. Create a Vendor Short List – Determine the top three vendors whose ERP products most closely fit your company size, company needs, and budget. Invite the three finalists to present software demonstrations to the ERP selection committee.
2. Communicate Your Requirements – Use a “Request for Proposal”, memo, or some form of written communication to outline your company’s needs. Also, make sure you let the vendors know if there is something you really want to see in the demo.
3. Schedule Site Visits – Allowing your top ERP vendor choices to visit your facility will only enhance their understanding of what you need. This is also a time for your ERP selection team and the vendor to have some dialogue about what you need.
4. Analyze the Gaps – Take the time as a selection committee to address the ERP software’s functionality, and determine if there are gaps in what you need the software to do, and what it says it will do.
5. Scheduling – Everyone is going to need ample time to prepare for the software demonstration. You will need time to continue analyzing the software’s functionality, and the vendor will need time to prepare a software demo that is tailored for your company. Be realistic about how much time is needed.
6. Allow Enough Time for the Demonstration – ERP software demonstrations are an opportunity for you to see the software in action. It will take some time to go through all the features and ask questions. Don’t schedule multiple demos in one day.
7. Let the Vendor Lead, but Remain in Control – Make sure your list of requirements is addressed, and the specifics of the software that you have questions about are answered. Also, it is highly recommended that the vendor uses your data to prepare the demo, as it will create a much more meaningful demo.
Once you have had the opportunity to see the software demonstration, now is the time to thank the vendor for coming, and meet with the selection team. It is important that the selection team meet and give their impressions, as well as discuss whether or not all their questions were answered. You shouldn’t allow the vendor to be a part of this process, as it is an opportunity for the selection team to have honest dialogue about what they saw. Record the conclusions, and follow up with the vendors regarding any questions or decisions.
For more videos, training and ERP help, visit www.Godlan.com