In many articles I read choosing a software partner is likened to choosing a spouse. During the project you’ll be spending long hours together and you want someone you can communicate with and someone you trust.
One of our clients, Robert at Modern Tire, recently said, “CAL does business the way we do business; stand behind the product and the work and make the customer happy.”
This made me start to think about the idea of choosing a business partner with a similar business style.
In the ERP software market today, some traditionally larger vendors are going down market to appeal to smaller companies. But if you are a small company, do they really know how to do business the way you do business?
If the owner of your manufacturing company uses a desk that is a piece of plywood on two saw horses, will consultants wearing fancy suits be the best fit for you? Will you “speak the same language”?
On the other hand, if you work in a very corporate environment, choosing a software consultant that is a “one man shop” also may not be a fit. His work style may be more flexible while you need structure, milestones and spiral bound reports to answer to your board of directors.
Another one of our clients Gary at Amax, said, “We looked at several Dynamics partners. Some had all the buzzwords and platitudes. But when speaking with CAL we thought, ‘these are really nuts and bolts guys’ ”. And for them, that is the style they wanted.
Many software consultants can get the job done and have the technical expertise, but you want to choose one that will make the process enjoyable for you, someone with the same style.
How can you determine if a Dynamics GP partner is right for you?
You need to do a little detective work and investigate the prospective partner. A website is not always the best indicator of a company’s style as people can portray themselves with any web template they want. Instead, try these points:
Ask to visit their offices and meet the team. If this is not possible, see if they have a company video such as the one CAL Business Solutions has at www.calszone.com/meetcal.
Ask about the size of their company, the number of clients and the typical size/industry of their clients.
Ask to speak with references and then ask those references questions specifically about the partner’s working style as it relates to your own.
Ask if you can speak with the actual consultants who will be working on your project after you purchase, not just the sales person. You will be spending many hours working with these people, you want to make sure you connect and can see yourselves working well together.
Another client, Andrea at Thor Specialty Chemical, said, “The CAL team is great to work with. They involve me in the process and speak in terms I can understand. It’s not just all techy speak and code words.”
This shows that what stuck with her after the project was the way she interacted with the consultants.
Another important factor is working with someone who has experience in your industry.
You don’t want to waste time explaining what “drop ship” or “inventory turns” are. If you work with a Dynamics GP partner who has other successful implementations in your industry, you can actually learn strategies from them instead.
So if you are choosing a Microsoft Dynamics GP partner – don’t just choose based on location or price. Evaluate the working style and company personality of the partner and choose someone that is a match for you.
If you are evaluating Microsoft Dynamics GP, we invite you to get to know us at CAL Business Solutions. [email protected], 860-485-0910.