Insight Paper 6.11.2014

Packaged Application Solutions

Best Practices for Vendor Selection & Implementation

Enterprises and institutions across a variety of industries depend on external vendors’ solutions to support core business processes, generate revenue, and accelerate growth. More times than not, the vendor selection and implementation process are difficult and disjointed, leading to a painful first experience with future strategic partners.

Selection and implementation of a packaged application solution are often undertaken either in a siloed business unit with little enterprise insight and leveraging an undocumented and haphazard process, or through a painstakingly long process which then fails to place sufficient effort in understanding the business and technology implications of a packaged solution.

Trexin has defined a series of best practices that span vendor solution selection and implementation, which place the focus on business issues and drive cross-functional support. These best practices include:

  1. Implement processes, not tools
  2. Leverage industry best practices
  3. Compete with the market, not the software vendor
  4. Drive a sustainable vendor choice
  5. Manage shifting project roles and skills
  6. Take advantage of early system availability
  7. Address functional gaps and overlaps
  8. Map application and data architecture ASAP

As presented in the following table, each best practice is associated with a set of time-tested considerations that have been derived directly from years of cross-functional implementation project experience at the user, manager, and executive levels:

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Once you have internalized packaged tool best practices and their associated considerations, these best practices will allow you to dig deeper into actual tactical impacts to vendor solution selection and implementation workstreams, as described in the following table:

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These best practices around vendor solution selection and implementation are designed to make the evaluation process learning intensive and the implementation as streamlined as possible. Software projects are without a doubt a difficult task and selection and subsequent implementation of a vendor’s packaged application solution can easily be derailed, especially on a global, enterprise-wide project. Focus on process, business issues, and efficiency is guaranteed to create cross-functional consensus and management buy-in, leaving you confident throughout the project.

Tagged in: Aligned Enterprise, Solutions Delivery
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