Top 54 Fund Accounting Software (Feb 2023)

2023's Best 55 Fund Accounting Systems

Shlomi LaviShlomi Lavi / Feb 03, 2023

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1. Xero

  • Best for: Small businesses and start ups
  • Price: starts at $12 per month
  • Mar 09, 2022
Compare Xero Vs. Xero

Xero is a cloud-based accounting and finance software for small, start-up, and growing enterprises. It has invoice management, purchasing, bank reconciliation, and bookkeeping features which help businesses boost their cash flow.


2. Multiview

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $150 per user/year
  • Mar 11, 2022
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Multiview Financial Software is a cloud-based modular financial management system that incorporates accounts payable, accounts receivable, purchase order management, a general ledger, inventory management, business intelligence, order management, document management, and more.


3. Denali Business

  • Best for: Small businesses and start ups
  • Price: starts at $1,999 per license
  • Mar 10, 2022
Compare Denali Business Vs. Xero

Everything you expect from a leading business accounting solution, plus the tools to manage cash flow, monitor profitability, analyze trends, track inventory, and Denali Business by Cougar Mountain Software is a modular accounting solution which provides customers with reliable and accurate financia...


4. BillQuick - Integrated Project Management and Accounting

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $7.95 per user/month
  • Mar 20, 2022
Compare BillQuick - Integrated Project Management and Accounting Vs. Xero

BillQuick is a cloud based and on premise integrated project management and time and billing software that is designed for users in various industries including architecture, construction, accounting and consulting and more.


5. Fusion Accounts

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $14.95 per user/month
  • Mar 02, 2022
Compare Fusion Accounts Vs. Xero

Fusion Accounts is an online accounting and finance software developed for all business types and sizes. It has billing and invoicing, payroll accounting, fixed asset accounting, bookkeeping, fund accounting, and core accounting features.


6. SAP Financials On Demand

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price:
  • Mar 04, 2022
Compare SAP Financials On Demand Vs. Xero

SAP launched Financials OnDemand in late 2012 as a stand-alone financial management solution designed exclusively for the cloud. It tracks end-to-end financial transactions from order to cash and procurement to payment, provides rich embedded data analytics focused on KPIs, and supports mobile devic...


7. Sage Intacct

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $15,000 per year
  • Apr 12, 2022
Compare Sage Intacct Vs. Xero

Intacct Financial management software (now Sage intact) is an integrated, cloud-based financial and accounting management solution for small, mid-market, and big enterprise businesses.


8. SAP Business ByDesign

  • Best for: SMBs
  • Price: starts at $20 per user/month
  • Apr 13, 2022
Compare SAP Business ByDesign Vs. Xero

SAP Business ByDesign is a cloud based ERP software suite, designed for small and medium sized enterprises. It deals with all your business branches, and does so through the use of a centralized system presenting all options in one interface. The program is also located on cloud storage and processi...


9. TB Works

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $299 per year
  • Feb 12, 2022
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TB Works is a trending cloud-based Accounting-Finance software, it is designed to support small, medium and large size business. TB Works received a rating of 3.7 from ITQlick team. The software cost is considered average (2.6/5) when compared to other solutions in their category.


10. Navigator

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $250 per user/month
  • Jul 13, 2022
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Asset Vantage Accounting & Finance is an on-premise accounting and finance solution that is suitable for use by professionals as well as businesses ranging from family offices, CPA firms, trusts & estates, partnerships, and private foundations


Pricing Guide - Fund Accounting Software:

Accounting & Finance Software products Price Range

An SMB size company should expect to pay between $0 and more than $4 for a base subscription of Accounting & Finance software. Additionally, the software vendors may include charges for extra features such as bill management, invoicing, and multiple currency support. The costs are usually on a "per month/per user" basis.

The price breakdown of accounting and finance software based on business size is as follows:

  • Accounting and finance software pricing for small organizations has a price range of $9-$40 per month/per user. Tally.ERP 9, for example, goes for $9 a month, although it has a one-time subscription starting from $630. Clearview Infocus costs $24 per month for each user, and SlickPie goes for $40 – Slickpie also has a free Starter subscription as well.
  • Medium-sized organizations would typically have to pay within the price range of $10-$45 per month for Accounting and Finance software. For example, FreshBooks charges $15 per month for its medium-sized plan; Sage 50cloud pricing goes for $45 per month, and MYOB Essentials for $14 a month.
  • Large companies can expect prices between $10 and $150 from Accounting and Finance software vendors. For instance, Xero charges $60 per month for its large plan, FINSYNC pricing goes for $45 a month, while QuickBooks Online large subscriptions start at $70 a month

Accounting and Finance software vendors have different prices based on the subcategories into which they fall.

Some of the accounting best of breeds software include

  • Financial Reporting Software This subcategory has a price range of $0-$70. For context, A2X for Amazon pricing starts at $19 a month; Wave Accounting is free across plans, and Cognos costs between $15 and $70.
  • Trust Accounting Software Trust Accounting Software vendors can charge up to $1000 for the software. For example, AdvantageLaw charges a one-time fee of $490, ESILAW 360 pricing goes for $65 per month, and MAUI cost up to $1000 for one month - MAUI has a free trial version as well.
  • Sales Tax software The sales Tax software has a price range of $50-$1500. Traxit costs $50 a month; Utility Software pricing goes for $85, and GreenGIST for a one-time charge of $1500. Intuit ProSeries has a plan which goes for $270 a year, and EcomTax for $19 per month.
  • Bookkeeper Software The bookkeeper Software would cost around $15 to $100, either monthly or yearly. For instance, Neat pricing goes for $100 a year, Veryfi costs up to $15 a month, and Botkeeper pricing sits around $99 a month.
  • Auto Dealer Accounting Software The subcategory can cost up to $200 per month or year. For example, QuickBooks Desktop Pro pricing starts at $200 a year, Abcoa Deal Pack costs up to $75 a month, and MotorLot pricing goes for $45 per month. Host books charge $10 a month, ARI costs $19 per month, and Frazer pricing falls around $55 a month.
  • Debt Collection Software Users can expect to pay $59-$239 a month for Debt Collection Software subscriptions. For example, Funding Gates AR pricing goes for $99, and My DSO Manager pricing starts at $59 a month, with other plans up to $239. Also, CollectMore charges a one-time fee of $6 for its software.

11. The Raisers Edge

  • Best for: Medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $499 per month
  • Aug 25, 2022
Compare The Raisers Edge Vs. Xero

The Raiser’s Edge is a complete fundraising software solution with retention, efficiency, acquisition and upgrading features. Using this fundraising tool, users can run annual fund giving, major giving, planned giving and online giving via one system. The mobile app of The Raiser’s Edge also offers ...


12. Shoeboxed

  • Best for: Small businesses and start ups
  • Price: starts at $18 per month
  • Oct 17, 2022
Compare Shoeboxed Vs. Xero

The fastest way to turn a pile of receipts into digital data for effortless expense reporting, accounting, bookkeeping, and tax preparation.send Shoeboxed your receipts, business cards, bills and other documents and everything will be carefully sorted and scanned into a secure online account. All of...


13. Averiware

  • Best for: SMBs
  • Price: starts at $395 per 5 users/month
  • Apr 27, 2022
Compare Averiware Vs. Xero

Averiware is a business intelligence and analytical solution for businesses of all sizes. It features services related to sales force automation, CRM, inventory management, and other aspects of business. The software was designed and launched by Averiware Inc headquartered in California,...


14. Wild Apricot

  • Best for: Small businesses and start ups
  • Price: starts at $48 per month
  • Apr 26, 2022
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Wild Apricot is a membership and donor management solution for businesses of all sizes. Its capabilities include campaign management, contact management, email marketing, and others. The software was designed and launched by Wild Apricot Inc headquartered in Ontario, Canada.


15. MOHID Software

  • Best for: Small businesses and start ups
  • Price: starts at $99 per month
  • Apr 30, 2022
Compare MOHID Software Vs. Xero

MOHID is a cloud-based Nonprofit software that assists leaders in managing donations to mosques through an end-to-end method.


16. Coda Financials

  • Best for: Medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $10 per month
  • Apr 25, 2022
Compare Coda Financials Vs. Xero

Unit4 Financials or formerly known as Coda Financials is a cloud-based or on-premise financial and accounting management solution for medium to large companies.


17. ReconArt

  • Best for: SMBs
  • Price: starts at $1,500 per 5 users/month
  • May 21, 2022
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ReconArt is a core accounting software that helps businesses to automate data import, reporting, and matching.


18. GolfRegistrations

  • Best for: Small businesses and start ups
  • Price: starts at $299 per license
  • May 19, 2022
Compare GolfRegistrations Vs. Xero

GolfRegistrations is a web based golf tournament software solution for businesses of all sizes. It offers such capabilities as registration management, online sharing of events, and others. The software was designed and launched by DoJiggy Fundraising Software headquartered in Oregon, United States....


19. Planful

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price:
  • Jan 01, 2023
Compare Planful Vs. Xero

Host Analytics is a cloud-based CPM (Corporate Performance Management) suite. It is also called an EPM solution, with E meaning Enterprise. This product includes tools such as planning, close management, reporting and analytics. By using this software, companies can have one platform that integrates...


20. FinancialForce ERP

  • Best for: SMBs
  • Price: starts at $175 per month
  • May 26, 2022
Compare FinancialForce ERP Vs. Xero

FinancialForce ERP is an enterprise resource planning solution for businesses of all sizes. Its services include supply chain management, service automation, order and billing, financial management, and others. The software was designed and launched by FinancialForce.com headquartered in ...


21. ZipBooks

  • Best for: Small businesses and start ups
  • Price: starts at $15 per month
  • May 29, 2022
Compare ZipBooks Vs. Xero

ZipBooks is accounting, bookkeeping, and finance software solution for small businesses, contractors, freelancing professionals, and growing enterprises. Its key features include online invoicing, online accounting, time tracking, team management, and recurring billing.


22. ACTIVE Net

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $4.95 per license
  • May 29, 2022
Compare ACTIVE Net Vs. Xero

ACTIVE Net is a web based membership and donation management solution for non-profit businesses of all sizes. It offers such capabilities as committee management, social media management, fundraising management, and others. The software was designed and launched by Active Network LLC headquartered i...


23. Accounting Seed

  • Best for: Small businesses and start ups
  • Price: starts at $25 per user/month
  • May 29, 2022
Compare Accounting Seed Vs. Xero

Accounting Seed is an accounting solutions software for businesses to help control their financial management, increase data visibility, gauge the financial health of their clients account, and provide quotes for clients.


24. Sparkrock Software

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $5,170 per month
  • Jun 22, 2022
Compare Sparkrock Software Vs. Xero

Sparkrock is a cloud-based accounting software that interpolates the elements of finance management and HR management into a single solution designed to streamline accounting operations and increase productivity.


25. Accelerate

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $7.95 per license
  • Jun 25, 2022
Compare Accelerate Vs. Xero

Accelerate is a web based fundraising management solution for businesses of all sizes. It offers such services as multi-channel campaigns, donation management, event management, and others. The software was designed and launched by KIMBIA headquartered in Texas, United States.


26. Financials for Office 365

  • Best for: SMBs
  • Price: starts at $49 per month
  • Aug 24, 2022
Compare Financials for Office 365 Vs. Xero

Financials for Office 365 (now Wiise) is a cloud-based core accounting software that assists managers in organizing payroll, accounting, inventory, and CRM operations from a single system.


27. Acumatica Distribution Management Suite

  • Best for: Start up, Small business, Medium business
  • Price: starts at $649 per month
  • Aug 25, 2022
Compare Acumatica Distribution Management Suite Vs. Xero

Acumatica Distribution Management Suite is an application software module, which has been developed to aid in the management of the intricacies of distribution. It enables the user to track inventory, purchasing, ordering, filling orders, and delivering customer support. This software delivers real-...


28. Workday Adaptive Planning

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price:
  • Oct 26, 2022
Compare Workday Adaptive Planning Vs. Xero

Workday Adaptive Planning is an enterprise planning software designed to help organizations improve planning & modeling skills and drive productivity.


29. Fundly

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price:
  • Jul 06, 2022
Compare Fundly Vs. Xero

Fundly is a web based fundraising solution for businesses of all sizes. It offers such capabilities as campaign management, donor management, payment processing, and others. The software was designed and launched by Fundly headquartered in California, United States.


30. Aidmatrix Virtual Food Drive

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price:
  • Jul 19, 2022
Compare Aidmatrix Virtual Food Drive Vs. Xero

Aidmatrix Virtual Food Drive is a growing cloud-based Non-Profit software, it is designed to support small, medium and large size business. Aidmatrix Virtual Food Drive received a rating of 2.5 from ITQlick team. The software cost is considered affordable (1.1/5) when compared to alternative soluti...


31. Infor SunSystems Software

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $150 per user/year
  • Jul 30, 2022
Compare Infor SunSystems Software Vs. Xero

Infor SunSystems is an ERP software that enables businesses to coordinate financial and costing transactions, and process data account balances using existing ledger data. The software grants visibility to balance sheets, profit and loss accounts as well as all purchasing activities.


32. Soft4RealEstate

  • Best for: SMBs
  • Price: starts at $148 per month
  • Jul 29, 2022
Compare Soft4RealEstate Vs. Xero

Soft4RealEstate is a property management software designed as an all-in-one online platform for commercial, retail, and mixed properties.


33. ZarMoney Cloud Accounting

  • Best for: SMBs
  • Price: starts at $15 per user/month
  • Jul 29, 2022
Compare ZarMoney Cloud Accounting Vs. Xero

ZarMoney is a web-based cloud business accounting software that enables businesses to create and send invoices, track bills, and determine the payment status.


34. FundRaiser Software

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $649 per license
  • Jul 28, 2022
Compare FundRaiser Software Vs. Xero

FundRaiser Software is a web based fundraising management solution for small and medium businesses. It offers such services as membership management, donation management, event management, and others. The software was designed and launched by FundRaiser Software headquartered in Missouri, United Sta...


35. AccountMate

  • Best for: Small businesses and start ups
  • Price: starts at $4,000 per license
  • Jul 31, 2022
Compare AccountMate Vs. Xero

Account mate is a cloud-based manufacturing software and can also be locally installed. It provides unique solutions for managing and developing accounts for businesses. It is suitable for the management of finances, inventory and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP).


36. Connected Accounting & ERP

  • Best for: Small businesses and start ups
  • Price: starts at $469 per license
  • Aug 06, 2022
Compare Connected Accounting & ERP Vs. Xero

Connected Accounting & ERP is cloud-based manufacturing software that is built to help organizations and companies integrate their processes and data across various locations. The software is also capable of managing accounting routines in a way that the whole process is streamlined.


37. Exact Globe Accounting

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $225 per license
  • Aug 01, 2022
Compare Exact Globe Accounting Vs. Xero

Exact Globe is an enterprise resource planning solution for small and medium businesses. Its capabilities include procurement management, accounting, inventory management, and others. The software was designed and launched by K2 Enterprise headquartered in California, United States.


38. FlexiFinancials

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price:
  • Jul 31, 2022
Compare FlexiFinancials Vs. Xero

FlexiFinancials, developed by Flexi Software, is a full suite of accounting solutions for companies in several industries including Banking, Insurance, and Financial Services.


39. Accountants Drill

  • Best for: Medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $105 per month
  • Aug 05, 2022
Compare Accountants Drill Vs. Xero

Accountant Drill is an accounting & finance software designed as a cloud toolset for accounting data communication, import, and analysis. With the software, users will be able to ensure successful accounting engagements and carry out more tasks.


40. VolunteerHub

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $150 per month
  • Aug 05, 2022
Compare VolunteerHub Vs. Xero

VolunteerHub is a web based volunteer management solution for businesses of all sizes. It offers such capabilities as attendance management, event management, scheduling, and others. The software was designed and launched by Carr Engineering Inc headquartered in Texas, United States.


41. MatchMaker FundRaising Software

  • Best for: SMBs
  • Price: starts at $1,990 per license
  • May 19, 2022
Compare MatchMaker FundRaising Software Vs. Xero

MatchMaker FundRaising Software is a fund-raising and donor management solution for non-profit businesses of all sizes. Important services include record management, contact management, event management, and others. The software was designed and launched by Heritage Designs LLC headquart...


42. ClearGIVE Complete

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $19.95 per license
  • Sep 24, 2022
Compare ClearGIVE Complete Vs. Xero

Reason Funding is a non-profit software designed to help organizations handle online giving, text donation, and peer-to-peer fundraising.


43. DENALI FUND

  • Best for: Small businesses and start ups
  • Price: starts at $999 per license
  • Sep 24, 2022
Compare DENALI FUND Vs. Xero

Denali Fund is a church management software designed as an on-premise platform for non-profit organization accounting. Adaptive to various organizational workflow needs, this GAAP & FASB-compliant software provides a stable audit trail that helps deter fraud.


44. Accufund Accounting Suite

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $2,995 per license
  • Sep 22, 2022
Compare Accufund Accounting Suite Vs. Xero

Accufund accounting suite is both a cloud-based and an on-premise solution that is developed to work in medium-sized businesses and large-sized enterprises. The software help enterprises that require a specialized payroll and financial reporting such as municipal government and other agencies.


45. RallyBound Social Fundraising Software

  • Best for: SMBs
  • Price: starts at $1,000 per license
  • Sep 21, 2022
Compare RallyBound Social Fundraising Software Vs. Xero

RallyBound Social Fundraising Software is a fundraising management solution for businesses of all sizes. It offers such capabilities as donation management, membership management, mobile integration, and others. The software was designed and launched by RallyBound headquartered in California, United...


46. DEACOM ERP Software

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $4,000 per license
  • Oct 01, 2022
Compare DEACOM ERP Software Vs. Xero

DEACOM ERP Software is an ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) system for process manufacturing industries. It includes numerous accounting, production, sales, maintenance, POS, purchasing, WMS, formula management, labor tracking, regulatory reporting, CM, BI, inventory and direct store delivery. It r...


47. The Financial Edge

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $299 per user/month
  • Oct 04, 2022
Compare The Financial Edge Vs. Xero

Financial Edge is an accounting system best suited for nonprofits and government agencies. This program has an effective solution for grant management. With the user-friendly interface and specific functionalities, all the accounting issues are handled in a timely manner and all postings are done to...


48. Microsoft Dynamics AX

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $4,500 per license
  • Sep 30, 2022
Compare Microsoft Dynamics AX Vs. Xero

Microsoft Dynamics AX software is an on-premise and cloud-based, enterprise resource planning and accounting system that best works for large enterprises, as well as medium businesses. Although it is designed to serve manufacturing and distribution industries, it also has capabilities to serve buyer...


49. CommitChange

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $99 per month
  • Oct 11, 2022
Compare CommitChange Vs. Xero

CommitChange is a growing cloud-based Non-Profit software, it is designed to support small, medium and large size business. CommitChange received a rating of 2.5 from ITQlick team. The software cost is considered affordable (1.3/5) when compared to alternative solutions.


50. FUND E-Z Accounting Solution

  • Best for: SMBs
  • Price: starts at $170 per user/month
  • Sep 30, 2022
Compare FUND E-Z Accounting Solution Vs. Xero

Fund E-Z Accounting solution is an accounting and budgeting software that allows users to track and create budgets that are used for different departments, funds, funding sources, programs, grants, and projects. The software is not dependent on the fiscal year, and it features custom report creation...


51. Sage 50 Accounting

  • Best for: SMBs
  • Price: starts at $42.75 per month
  • Oct 01, 2022
Compare Sage 50 Accounting Vs. Xero

Sage 50 Accounting is a business management solution created by the Sage Group. It used to be called Peachtree Accounting and Simply Accounting, but on the 2013 release, it was named Sage 50. The software is designed for small businesses, and includes modules for basic accounting requirements such a...


52. BAS Municipal Accounting

  • Best for: Medium and large size businesses
  • Price:
  • Oct 11, 2022
Compare BAS Municipal Accounting Vs. Xero

BAS Municipal Accounting is a growing cloud-based Accounting-Finance software, it is designed to support medium and large size business. BAS Municipal Accounting received a rating of 4.2 from ITQlick team. The software cost is considered affordable (1.6/5) when compared to alternative solutions.


53. ONE UP

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $9 per user/month
  • Feb 03, 2023
Compare ONE UP Vs. Xero

ONE UP is a fast growing cloud-based Accounting-Finance software, it is designed to support small, medium and large size business. ONE UP received a rating of 5 from ITQlick team. The software cost is considered average (2.8/5) when compared to other solutions in their category.


54. Microsoft Dynamics SL

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $2,250 per license
  • Jan 30, 2023
Compare Microsoft Dynamics SL Vs. Xero

Microsoft Dynamics SL is a web-based and on premise software solution developed to help companies manage complex project accounting. It is one of Microsoft’s enterprise resource planning applications  and part of the product family referred to as Microsoft Dynamics.   Microsoft Dynamics SL (origin...



A Buyer's Guide to Business Software Solutions

How to Evaluate and Buy Business Software
 
If you’re somehow puzzled if this article is only for a specific size of business, no, it’s not. This is for you SMEs, MNEs and start-ups software buyers. Also, we’re not talking about a specific software solution here. Whether the software solution that you’re planning to buy is for Accounting, Business Intelligence, ERP, CRM, Help Desk, Maintenance Management or other types of application, one thing is for sure; with the help of this article, you will be able to know the right process in evaluating and buying a business software solution.
 
We’ve been into the software business for years and we’re seeing a lot of nitty-gritty things that often bring confusions and hesitations to many companies looking for better software solutions. Some companies can’t afford to let go their legacy systems while a few is encountering technological snags once the new system is in place. While this is the underlying truth behind software acquisition and implementation, what’s exciting about buying a business software solution is that there is a clear and obvious proof that thousands of companies and corporations today are happy with the benefits this technology is bringing into their respective businesses.  There is a significant increase in their revenue and the growth is on-going. And it’s easy to say; many from the Fortune 500 companies are making a lot of money because of their smartly-acquired business software.
 
So, let’s get straight to the point. What should you do in order to acquire that business software that could make your organization achieve its goals? The answer to this is pretty straightforward: evaluate and buy that right business software. Yes, that’s what you need to do and here’s the best manual from ITQlick.com that could certainly help you in doing that strategically.
 
Consider the Needs of Your Organization
Let’s assume that at this point, the entire management team agreed that you are ready to invest on a certain software application. The budget has been compromised and the key persons who will be involved in the acquisition process were already identified. Therefore, it’s time to approach things the project management way.
 
Define the Project
Every business software solution is categorized base on application type, features, deployment model, market size and pricing model. Remember that our objective here is to evaluate and buy a business software product that will fit into the size and present needs of your business. So what the project management team should try to deal with first is to define the real requirements of your business exactly base on the categories set by the software industry. Moreover, by doing this activity, you are already narrowing down your search for the right solution. Now, consider bringing this list of FAQs to the project management and aim to come up with clear-cut answers.
 
  1. What type of software is needed? Is it Integrated-Suite, Best-of-Breed or Industry-Specific? Ask your CEO’s main agenda and find the perfect match from these available options.
  2. What are the core and secondary features? Are you looking for basic, advanced or hi-end features? List down the specific features per category and allow the department managers and supervisors to give their insights on this list.
  3. How are you going to deploy the system? Would it be on-premise, cloud-based, hosted, or mobile-based? Weigh these options with the help of your CIO.
  4. Are you going for Tier 1, Tier 2 or Tier 3 vendors? Their offered solutions are base on the size of their target market - SMEs, MNEs or start-ups. Seek your CFO’s advice as it is important to match your financial capacity against the cost of the solution that the providers have for you.
  5. Are you willing to pay for the perpetuity software license or a subscription-based solution is way better? How many users are there and what would be their roles in using the system? Solicit feedbacks from future end users for they know better what challenges and risks might possibly come along their way when they’re using the system.
 
Finalize the BOM or List of Requirements
After providing definite answers on the above questions, we can say that the project has already been defined. Your procurement team is now ready to do their role in the acquisition process of this solution. However, in order for them to execute their job properly, they must have the complete list of requirements - features, specifications, hardware, and the software product. In other words, the Bill-of-Materials (BOM) that is final, complete and well-prepared must be handed over to the procurement director. Needless to say, it is very important that everybody is following the company purchasing and procurement protocols at all times.  
 
Request for Proposal (RFP)
The RFP process will bring everything into formality. Since you’re more likely in a line of business that doesn’t regularly buy software products, it is of critical importance that your RFP is well-structured before you send it to your prospect solution providers.
 
Draft the RFP
An RFP that contains all the relevant information as discussed during the project management meetings will enable the providers to return back to you their proposal that is complete and substantial. Therefore, your RFP should basically contain the following:
 
Brief Introduction
  • Company Name
  • Mission and Goals
  • Purpose of the RFP (or the need for software solution)
Business Background
  • Organizational Structure
  • Current Situation (IT infrastructure, system currently in-use, system issues and desired solutions, etc.)
  • Major Objectives of the Software Purchase
Request for Specific Requirements
  • Solution Functionality
  • System Specifications
  • Vendor Company Information
  • Price Model, Service Plans, Package Options
Other Important Inquiries (if necessary)
 
Send the RFP
Well-structured RFP will bring a lot of advantages especially when the proposals from various providers are received and then subjected for review and analysis. Send your RFP to at least three to five providers (or prospects which you have already shortlisted during the project definition phase). Depending on the complexity of the solution, most vendors will send their proposal in a matter of time, which could be around 4 to 6 weeks for Integrated-Suite solution.
 
Why still send RFP?
Is there really a need for RFP if your preferred solution (like cloud-based) and the service plans or packages are already displayed on the vendor’s website? Well, yes, you still need to undergo the RFP process. For most sales people, they certainly know that those figures appearing in the vendor’s website are usually the “list price” and not the “actual price”. More importantly, the vendor’s proposal (response to RFP) will serve as your main basis for the negotiation. Therefore, sending an RFP is a strict requirement.
 
Follow up questions relevant to RFP
More often than not, questions and concerns will be raised by the vendors to whom you send the RFP. You have to entertain them with utmost professionalism. Solution providers who are seeking further clarifications relevant to the RFP are consisting of professional software experts who wants to help your organization as much as they can. Entertain them but at the same time, always be cautious when providing additional information which you know is confidential or proprietary.
 
Evaluate the Proposals
Always refer to your finalized BOM when tabulating the contents of each proposal. Part of this process is to check the features that are available from this certain vendor and to cross out those that are not. While using spreadsheet aids the tabulation process, laying down the document proposals on the table and allowing your project management team to review them one by one should always be conducted. Evaluating the proposals in full force can help strengthen your decision-making process. Have another round of brain-storming session and come with the name of your preferred solution provider.
 
When selecting the final vendor, always promote the best interest of your organization. Consider answering these questions with full sincerity.
 
  1. Which vendor can provide the long-term benefits to your organization?
  2. Which vendor can provide the best and honest service from acquisition to full implementation?
  3. Which vendor is willing to devote most of its time in better serving its client?
 
Contact this solution provider and in your own strategic approach, try to get the answers to those three important questions above. In most cases, vendor who really wants to prove its craft will offer product demos on a higher level. Others will even invite you to check their already deployed and working systems. Feel free to connect with this type of vendor. Conduct simulation and testing, be it a cloud-based or on-premise solution. Examine all aspects and angles especially those that your project management team want to really know in-depth. For as long as it could help you arrive at a better decision, consider doing all the options available – for the interest of the organization.
 
Enter the Negotiation Process
Most solutions providers can be flexible in terms of pricing. Although the final say is oftentimes on the mouth of the sales person from the vendor’s side, a good negotiation process can always deliver a win-win situation to both parties involve. While negotiation sometimes cannot be settled in one sitting session, always be honest with your intentions whenever negotiating with your provider. If it’s about your budget, justify it with clarity. If it’s about their service plans, tell them what’s lacking or missing on their solution. At the end of the day, the most important event that should happen is that both of you are shaking hands because of a well done negotiation process.
 
Seal the Contract
So what are you going to do on a contract that involves a significant amount of investment? There are three project management approaches for this.
 
  1. Pass the ball to you legal team. They know what to do and more or less they will tell you if there is something wrong with the contract. Give them enough time to review before they affix their signature and then finally seal the contract.
  2. Hire a consultant base on the technical aspect that you want to clarify in the contract. If it’s the Scope of Work (SOW), a software implementation expert is the right person. If it is related to complex legal terms and conditions, a lawyer can help. If it has something to do with money, invite an accountant to conduct a thorough review and computation if necessary.
  3. Always consider consulting your project management team. Remember that the CIO, CFO and CEO are all team members. They will be the signatories and they know what’s best for the interest of the company when signing a contract agreement.
 
From evaluation to buying stage, it is important that the project manager must take full responsibility of monitoring all the works identified and distributed among team members. This is why delegating the right project manager is also an important consideration when buying a business software solution. And again, ITQlick.com wants to emphasize that whatever the size of your company is, using the project management approach will always lead you into a better outcome – that is getting what you paid for the right business software solution. 

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Auditor - Shlomi Lavi

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Shlomi Lavi is an entrepreneur and founder of ITQlick.com. He holds a Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.) in Information Systems Engineering from Ben Gurion University in Israel. Shlomi brings 17 years of global IT and IS management experience as a consultant and implementation expert for small, medium and large-sized (global) companies. Shlomi’s goal is to share the best knowledge and news about information systems so you can make smarter buying decisions for your business.