Author: Bailey McCaffrey
When you are evaluating a sales performance management (SPM) or configure, price, quote (CPQ) solution, be sure to keep these important factors in mind to ensure your purchase the best possible solution. Don’t find yourself making one of these harmful mistakes:
Ignoring other stakeholders
You will need buy in from everyone using the solution in order to have it function at full capacity. It may be beneficial to make a list of every stakeholder and what is most important to them, for example:
- Executives - Aligning sales reps goals to corporate goals
- Sales Admins - Reduce disputes with accurate and timely reporting
- Sales Reps - Pay transparency and ease of use
- IT - The solution will result in more self-sufficiency and less tickets
Forgetting your “short-list” of most important features
Throughout the vendor selection process, it can be easy to get caught-up in the bells and whistles of a potential solution. By keeping your most important features front of mind, you make sure the solution you choose will achieve what you set out to accomplish in the first place. Don’t miss out on what is most important because of other distracting elements.
Not doing enough research
Selecting an SPM or CPQ vendor can be a time consuming and tedious process, and it should be. You are making a decision that will (hopefully) impact your entire sales processes for the better. Stock demo reels are a great way to see a solution in action, but should never be the main deciding factor when choosing a vendor. Standard demos are often focused on the strengths of the solution - insisting on a customized demonstration that is fitted to your priorities and your business will ensure that the vendor shows you the capabilities that are most important to your goals and your challenges.
Fully do your research, compare similar sized companies within your industry, and don’t limit your inquiries. (Hint: we are here to help if you need it!)
Neglecting your implementation process
In many ways, the implementation of a software solution is more critical than the software itself, yet this process is often overlooked when going through a vendor selection. You can set your solution up for success by putting just as much thought into your implementation partner, as you do your software.
Review possible implementation partners by asking these key questions:
- How many implementations have you completed for the vendor?
- Are you a certified partner?
- What are some benefits that prior customers have experienced?
- Are you competitively priced?
Underestimating the operational support effort
It’s one thing to pick the solution with the right capabilities. It’s another to ensure that you understand what it will take to stand up the solution. But equally important is what happens after the solution is up and running - specifically, what will it take to operationalize the solution? What can you do by yourself versus what things will require additional expertise or consulting services to support? Not thinking through the operational support model and the cost and resource implications can be a serious impediment to SPM or CPQ success.
Thinking you know the full story
Researching solutions can become confusing when every vendor is trying to convince you why their option is the best. Don’t get caught on your heels thinking you know the entire story when in reality every solution can be more complex than you're aware of. Don’t be afraid to ask for expert help from an unbiased third party who has seen multiple softwares in action.
Canidium wants to help you select the best SPM vendor for your company. To learn why you should use a consultancy for your vendor section, click HERE.
By avoiding these common mistakes during your SPM vendor selection, you will be on the right track to purchasing a successful software solution! If you want to talk to an SPM software expert, or have other questions about the process, just click the button below and send us a message.