Top 54 OLAP Software (Feb 2023)

2023's Best 55 OLAP Systems

Shlomi LaviShlomi Lavi / Feb 01, 2023

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1. Workday Adaptive Planning

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $15,000 per license
  • Dec 28, 2022
Compare Workday Adaptive Planning Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Workday Adaptive Planning software is a cloud-based, SaaS, Business planning solution that offers tools for forecasting, budgeting, and reporting. The software removes the need for new software or hardware for installation as it is offered through the Web as a Software-as-a-Service solution.


2. Sisense

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $83 per employee/month
  • Mar 09, 2022
Compare Sisense Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Sisense is a business analytics software used for business intelligence. Main functions include information collection, analysis, organization and producing reports. The users of this software have the benefit of selecting the data that they would want to analyze. You dont have to be an IT guru to u...


3. IBM Cognos Business Intelligence

  • Best for: Medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $10 per user/month
  • Mar 12, 2022
Compare IBM Cognos Business Intelligence Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

IBM Cognos Business Intelligence is a growing cloud-based BI software, it is designed to support medium and large size business. IBM Cognos Business Intelligence received a rating of 4.1 from ITQlick team. The software cost is considered average (3.8/5) when compared to other solutions in their c...


4. Birst

  • Best for: Medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $30,000 per 20 users/year
  • Jan 03, 2023
Compare Birst Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Birst is a Business Intelligence and analytics platform for medium to large businesses. Its key features include ad hoc reporting, charting, data import and export, visual analytics, customer service analytics, and more.


5. Microsoft SharePoint

  • Best for: Medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $5 per user/month
  • Mar 12, 2022
Compare Microsoft SharePoint Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

SharePoint makes it easy to store, sync and share all your important content. A new simplified user experience helps you streamline common tasks and create sites to keep teams in sync. New work management capabilities help you organize all your tasks from across SharePoint, Project and Outlook with ...


6. Eventzilla

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $1.50 per license
  • Mar 20, 2022
Compare Eventzilla Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Eventzilla is a trending cloud-based BI software, it is designed to support small, medium and large size business. Eventzilla received a rating of 4.4 from ITQlick team. The software cost is considered affordable (1/5) when compared to alternative solutions.


7. Tableau Desktop

  • Best for: SMBs
  • Price: starts at $70 per user/month
  • Apr 22, 2022
Compare Tableau Desktop Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Tableau is a cloud-based integrated business intelligence and reporting solution designed for small, midsize and large businesses. The solution helps the user analyze the critical business data as well as generate useful insights.


8. Tableau

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $15 per user/month
  • Apr 21, 2022
Compare Tableau Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Tableau is a family of data visualization software designed for business intelligence that includes Tableau Desktop, Tableau Online, Tableau Server, Tableau Public and Tableau Reader. The Tableau suite is intended for viewing and understanding business data through interactive data visualization. ...


9. SAP Analytics Cloud

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $22 per user/month
  • Apr 12, 2022
Compare SAP Analytics Cloud Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

SAP Analytics Cloud is a growing cloud-based BI software, it is designed to support small, medium and large size business. SAP Analytics Cloud received a rating of 4.3 from ITQlick team. The software cost is considered affordable (1/5) when compared to alternative solutions.


10. Grow BI Dashboard

  • Best for: SMBs
  • Price: starts at $1,500 per month
  • May 26, 2022
Compare Grow BI Dashboard Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Grow BI Dashboard is a Dashboard and KPIs software that allows businesses to prepare and store data, make and share unique insights, and build reports and amazing dashboards.


Pricing Guide - OLAP Software:

Business Intelligence Tools Price Range

For business intelligence software, the price sits around $3,000 per year for a user. However, it is worth noting that this price range is associated with the medium offering or package from each software vendor; in essence, it is suitable for small & medium-sized businesses. More robust offerings have volatile pricings that are adjusted to suit large businesses.

Users are expected to pay between $10 to $75 for a single user account, depending on the offering level. Examples are Prisync pricing is priced at $60 per month, ClearView InFocus, which costs $25 monthly, and SEMRush pricing sit around $100 monthly. However, SAP Business Objects costs $14,000 per year but includes 10 user accounts.

Additionally, business intelligence software can be targeted at SMBs or large-sized businesses. However, there are others that are meant for any business size. The software that is apt for each business size and their prices are as follows:

  • Small Businesses can expect to pay between $10–$50 monthly for a single account business intelligence software. For BI software that includes multiple accounts, they can expect to pay between $300–$500 per month. However, some other vendors like Britix24, Manage Engine Analytics Plus, and BI360 offer their low-end package free for small businesses, although with limited features. Some BI software for small businesses are Competitors App, which costs around $7 per month, KlipFolio $50 monthly, and AnswerDock $20 per month.
  • Medium Businesses can expect to pay between $50–$500 for a business intelligence software, depending on the number of accounts on each offering. For instance, Tableau pricing costs $70 for a single account, while Funnel and CYS cost around $500 and $300 respectively for pre-set multiple accounts.
  • Large Businesses can expect to pay $500–$10,000 for BI software packages that include a large workforce and around $60 for a single account. For instance, Prisync ultimate package costs around $300 monthly per user but allows only a minimum of 10 accounts, which amount to $3,000. Also, ArcGIS costs $1,500, and IBI is priced around $150 per month.

The price range for BI best of breed are as follows:

  • Reporting Software This subcategory of BI software has a price that ranges from $10 and $45, depending on the offering level. For example, Agent360 Marketing Reporting pricing starts from $80 per month for 5 users, Syncfusion Bold Reports costs $200 per month for 5 users, Germain APM cost up to $30 per day based on APM unit.
  • Data Visualization Software The price for software in this category ranges from $10 to $50 per user monthly. On the other hand, some others are completely free to use. Google Charts, for example, comes at no fee. However, software like Qlik Sense costs $15 per month per user, while Power BI costs more than $10 monthly per user.
  • Dashboard Software Dashboard software pricing is usually divided into three tiers, which range from $9 to $12, $12 to $27, and above $30, respectively; the price is usually set based on the number of dashboards made available in a month. Some dashboard software with this similar price are Cluvio, which costs $280 for 50 dashboards monthly, Microsoft Dynamics 365, which costs $190 monthly per user for a number of dashboards. Others are iClassPro = $130 and ThortSpace = around $10 monthly per user.
  • Risk Management Software Many products in this category are priced on a yearly basis, which, in many cases, may be per user. They can also be divided into three categories, of which the lowest offering range from $70 to $400, medium offering from $400 to $10,000, and the ultimate package from $10,000 upwards. Some products have monthly pricing regardless; for example, Goat Risk, which costs $15 per user, and OneSoft Connect, which costs around $6 per user. An example of a product with yearly pricing is Analytic Solver, which costs $250 per user. Lastly, some risk management software have one-time fees, like IsoMetrix, which costs $34,000 for a buyout.
  • Embedded Analytics Software The pricing for embedded analytics software is often divided into three tiers, usually to suit small businesses, medium businesses, and large businesses. The price ranges from $10 to $15, $15 to $325, and above $325 for each respective tire. Stratifyd is an embedded analytics software with yearly pricing of $1,000 per user. Others are GoodData, which costs $2,400 per year, INFRAGISTIC Reveal, which costs around $10 per user per month.

11. Vena

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price:
  • Jul 06, 2022
Compare Vena Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Vena Solutions is a Corporate Performance Management (CPM) software that helps corporate companies manage, organize, and support spreadsheet and spreadsheet based processes for consolidation, management, and reporting. The software can be used for financial budgeting, planning, and accounting proces...


12. Helical Insight

  • Best for: Small businesses and start ups
  • Price: Has a free version
  • Oct 18, 2022
Compare Helical Insight Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Helical Insights is a web-based Business Intelligence software that allows managers to interact with organizational data using Machine Learning and NLP (Natural Language Processing).


13. V5 Andon

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $110,000 per year
  • May 21, 2022
Compare V5 Andon Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

V5 Andon (now Pinpoint V5) is a manufacturing software designed to help users create a graphical plan for each product made, and this plan can be shared with others.


14. Tellius

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $495 per 5 users/month
  • May 24, 2022
Compare Tellius Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Tellius is a cloud-based Business Intelligence software that assists analysts in deriving key business behavior drivers using natural language.


15. Planful

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

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...


16. HALO

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $54.94 per license
  • Jun 18, 2022
Compare HALO Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

HALO is a medical scheduling software that offers performance for investment dollars in healthcare facilities. With it, users can process immediate payment and save costs.


17. GoodData

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $2,400 per year
  • Jun 23, 2022
Compare GoodData Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

GoodData is a cloud-based BI software that allows businesses to easily read through their data and quickly answer critical questions by offering visual analysis tools that support data sharing and interpretation for deriving strategical insights. GoodData is developed by a company of the same na...


18. Instant Answers

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price:
  • Dec 18, 2022
Compare Instant Answers Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

DataRPM is a business intelligence and analytics solution for small and medium businesses. It offers customized reporting and dashboards along with in-depth analytics management. The software was designed and launched by DataRPM Corporation headquartered in Virginia, United States.


19. InsightSquared Enterprise

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $65 per license
  • Jul 05, 2022
Compare InsightSquared Enterprise Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

InsightSquared Enterprise is a web based business intelligence solution for small and medium businesses. Its capabilities include pipeline management, sales analytics, trend management, and others. The software was designed and launched by InsightSquared headquartered in Massachusetts, ...


20. Toucan Toco

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price:
  • Mar 12, 2022
Compare Toucan Toco Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Toucan Toco is a data storytelling software that provides actionable information from all data sources. The software manages workforce planning optimization, optimizes call schedules, accelerates decision making, and improves performance.


21. Stratum

  • Best for: Medium and large size businesses
  • Price:
  • Jul 05, 2022
Compare Stratum Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Stratum offers Business Intelligence (BI) solutions for manufacturers & distributors. The software is designed to provide greater insight to customers’ businesses through analytics and reporting software that is low risk, quick to install, easy to use and provides a fast Return on Investment (ROI). ...


22. Workday Adaptive Planning

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

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


23. OneStream XF

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price:
  • May 15, 2022
Compare OneStream XF Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

OneStream XF is a corporate performance management software designed to help financial organizations streamline CPM processes while enabling them to meet their financial goals. The software automates financial-close processes, increases transparency, and automatically protects data.


24. Analance Business Intelligence Suite

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price:
  • Jul 18, 2022
Compare Analance Business Intelligence Suite Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Analance Business Intelligence Suite is a cloud-based as well as on-premise hybrid business-intelligence software that helps businesses in all fields. It helps the users in collaboration activities and data analysis tasks to integrate the data captured for assessment.


25. Style Intelligence

  • Best for: Medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $2,800 per year
  • Jul 15, 2022
Compare Style Intelligence Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Style Intelligence is a business intelligence and decision support solution for businesses of all sizes. It offers such services as application development, performance metrics, version control, and others. The software was designed and launched by InetSoft Technology Corporation headqua...


26. Profitbase Retail BI

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price:
  • Jul 15, 2022
Compare Profitbase Retail BI Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Profitbase Retail BI is a business intelligence solution with out-of-the-box templates and software tools to help users reduce the cost, risk and deployment times. The solution can provide 360 degree visibility to all parts of business performance and can help users to track and plan on performance ...


27. Tableau Server

  • Best for: Medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $15 per user/month
  • Jul 25, 2022
Compare Tableau Server Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Tableau Server is a business intelligence application that allows users to conduct easy to use browser based analytics. It is one of the fastest alternatives to the traditional business intelligence software. What makes the application different is how it can be used by almost any user on almost any...


28. Numetric

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price:
  • Aug 23, 2022
Compare Numetric Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Numetric is a business intelligence software designed to reduce traffic casualties on the highways by enabling businesses to maximize their safety ROI by turning data into resource investments.


29. TIBCO Spotfire S+

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $650 per user/year
  • Jul 25, 2022
Compare TIBCO Spotfire S+ Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

TIBCO Spotfire S+ is a software developed to help users unlock the information hidden in their data and compete in the fierce market environment that the world has turned into. It is the application that will allow businesses to gain fast insights and make agile, competitive decisions for the overal...


30. Bilbeo BI Dashboard Software

  • Best for: Medium business
  • Price: starts at $39 per 2 users/month
  • Feb 21, 2022
Compare Bilbeo BI Dashboard Software Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Bilbeo BI Dashboard Software is an analytics and KPI software that helps businesses automatically locate weak points by providing intelligent dashboards using generated metrics.


31. eazyBI

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $20 per month
  • Aug 16, 2022
Compare eazyBI Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

The eazyBI, as cloud-based business intelligence software, gives users the right tools in data analytics and visualization, analysis and reporting. This software can be integrated into various business apps.


32. ClicData

  • Best for: Small businesses and start ups
  • Price: starts at $73 per month
  • Aug 03, 2022
Compare ClicData Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

ClicData is cloud-based and an on-premise business intelligence software that is suitable for use in a small and medium-sized business. ClicData provides users with several functionalities, such as providing financial and accounting information to the users.


33. ORBIT

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

ORBIT Reporting + Analytics is an ERP software designed to provide businesses with self-service reporting and analytics. The software empowers them with real-time data that provides a 360° view of operations, theory, enabling them to make more informed decisions.


34. CRD

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $7,995 per user/year
  • Sep 29, 2022
Compare CRD Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

The CRD is an automation tool designed to help users in the automation of the generation and delivery of their crystal reports.


35. Analyzer

  • Best for: Medium business
  • Price: starts at $150 per user/month
  • Oct 18, 2022
Compare Analyzer Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Analyzer is a growing cloud-based BI software, it is designed to support small and medium size business. Analyzer received a rating of 4 from ITQlick team. The software cost is considered affordable (2.1/5) when compared to alternative solutions.


36. Phocas Business Intelligence

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $500 per user/month
  • Oct 01, 2022
Compare Phocas Business Intelligence Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

We are experts in helping manufacturing, distribution and retail customers turn their company data into results.


37. Exago

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price:
  • Oct 01, 2022
Compare Exago Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Exago is a business intelligence solution for businesses of all sizes. It offers such services as ad hoc reporting and analysis, customizable dashboards, data management, and others. The software was designed and launched by Exago Inc headquartered in Connecticut, United States.


38. Yellowfin Business Intelligence

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $30 per user/month
  • Feb 01, 2023
Compare Yellowfin Business Intelligence Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Yellowfin is a business intelligence software developed by a company of the same name. It allows data analysis and reporting from relational databases and multi-dimensional cubes. Yellowfin offers its users a number of personalized & interactive dashboards that can help improve performance at all le...


39. SAP Crystal Reports

  • Best for: Small businesses and start ups
  • Price: starts at $495 per provider
  • May 13, 2022
Compare SAP Crystal Reports Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

SAP Crystal Reports is a fast growing cloud-based BI software, it is designed to support small and medium size business. SAP Crystal Reports received a rating of 4.3 from ITQlick team. The software cost is considered affordable (2/5) when compared to alternative solutions.


40. Izenda Reports

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $30,000 per license
  • Feb 01, 2023
Compare Izenda Reports Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Izenda Reports is a cloud-based and an on-premise business intelligent software that comes along with different functionalities and features. Izenda Reports is suitable for all types of businesses and across all industries.


41. Diver | BI Software

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price:
  • Feb 25, 2022
Compare Diver | BI Software Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Diver | BI Software is a growing cloud-based BI software, it is designed to support small, medium and large size business. Diver | BI Software received a rating of 5 from ITQlick team. The software cost is considered average (3/5) when compared to other solutions in their category.


42. Informance EMI - Manufacturing Intelligence

  • Best for: Large business
  • Price:
  • Feb 22, 2022
Compare Informance EMI - Manufacturing Intelligence Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Informance EMI is a business intelligence software tool designed for companies of all sizes. Its main features include online analytical processing (OLAP), reporting and dashboards, financial forecasting and budgeting, performance measurements and graphic benchmark tools. The tool is cloud-based and...


43. Panorama Necto

  • Best for: Medium and large size businesses
  • Price:
  • Feb 26, 2022
Compare Panorama Necto Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Panorama Necto is a cloud-based business intelligence suite designed to offer analytics for business processes in Telecom including sales, marketing, and finance among others.


44. Profitbase BI

  • Best for: Small businesses and start ups
  • Price:
  • Mar 07, 2022
Compare Profitbase BI Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Profitbase BI is a growing cloud-based BI software, it is designed to support small and medium size business. Profitbase BI received a rating of 3.5 from ITQlick team. The software cost is considered average (3.1/5) when compared to other solutions in their category.


45. BI Office

  • Best for: Medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $9.99 per month
  • Mar 03, 2022
Compare BI Office Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

BI Office is a business intelligence software solution for businesses of all sizes. It offers such services as data analytics, big data management, mobile business intelligence, and others. The software was designed and launched by Pyramid Analytics headquartered in Washington, United St...


46. icCube Data Analysis & Reporting

  • Best for: SMBs
  • Price: starts at $20351.30 per year
  • Mar 22, 2022
Compare icCube Data Analysis & Reporting Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

icCube Data Analysis-Reporting is a trending cloud-based BI software, it is designed to support small and medium size business. icCube Data Analysis-Reporting received a rating of 4.7 from ITQlick team. The software cost is considered affordable (1.9/5) when compared to alternative solutions.


47. Logi Info

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $16,000 per year
  • Mar 15, 2022
Compare Logi Info Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Logi Analytics is business intelligence and reporting management solution for small and medium businesses. It also features embedded analytics and support for mobile applications. The software wasa designed and launched by Logi Analytics, Inc. headquartered in Virginia, United States.


48. CoolaData

  • Best for: SMBs
  • Price:
  • Mar 09, 2022
Compare CoolaData Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

CoolaData is a business intelligence software solution for businesses of all sizes. It offers big data management, real time analytics, application development, and other capabilities. The software was designed and launched by CoolaData headquartered in Tel Aviv, Israel.


49. BOARD

  • Best for: Medium and large size businesses
  • Price:
  • Mar 23, 2022
Compare BOARD Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

BOARD is a business analytics and performance management software developed for small to large enterprises. Its key features include ad hoc analysis and reporting, budgeting, planning & forecasting, business intelligence, predictive analytics, simulation models, and workflow management to name a few...


50. SAP BusinessObjects BI

  • Best for: Large business
  • Price: starts at $14,000 per year
  • Mar 23, 2022
Compare SAP BusinessObjects BI Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

SAP Business Objects BI is a cloud-based business intelligence solution designed for small and medium-size businesses. The solution core features include predictive dashboards, ad-hoc reporting, crystal reports and more. The solution deployment options include cloud-based and on-premise.


51. Holistics

  • Best for: SMBs
  • Price: starts at $100 per month
  • Mar 26, 2022
Compare Holistics Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Holistics is a leading cloud-based BI software, it is designed to support small and medium size business. Holistics received a rating of 4.5 from ITQlick team. The software cost is considered affordable (1.4/5) when compared to alternative solutions.


52. MITS Distributor Analytics

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $10,000 per license
  • Oct 29, 2022
Compare MITS Distributor Analytics Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

MITS Distributor Analytics is cloud-based and on-premise comprehensive reporting and business intelligence solutions, empowers non-technical users to make better decisions using the data that is obtained from other systems such as the enterprise resource planning systems.


53. iDashboards Display Solution

  • Best for: Small, medium and large size businesses
  • Price: starts at $30 per user/month
  • Mar 24, 2022
Compare iDashboards Display Solution Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

IDashboards Display Solution is a cloud-based business intelligence software that is developed to suit the needs of all types of businesses, including small-sized businesses, medium-sized businesses, and large enterprises.


54. Kyubit Business Intelligence

  • Best for: SMBs
  • Price: starts at $695 per license
  • Mar 25, 2022
Compare Kyubit Business Intelligence Vs. Workday Adaptive Planning

Kyubit Business Intelligence is a growing cloud-based BI software, it is designed to support small and medium size business. Kyubit Business Intelligence received a rating of 4.4 from ITQlick team. The software cost is considered affordable (1.2/5) when compared to alternative solutions.



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.