Organizations are challenged to find authoritative information about technology vendors that they can rely on to help evaluate and understand applying technology to your unique situation. At a time when claims about technology fly about with the speed and reliability of gossip, authoritative, in-depth analysis based on reliable objective research is essential. Technology buyers that embrace and use authoritative research are certain to maximize their investments.
We offer our Value Index as a research-based guide for technology buyers and suppliers on current vendors and products. Our Value Index is designed to help decision-makers through use as part of an RFI / RFP approach. Our carefully crafted and best practices-based methodology draws on our benchmark research to provide product and vendor analyses that reflect organizations’ priorities. The reports can guide you on how to assess vendors to avoid making a decision that will negatively impact the total cost of ownership and return on investment.
In our view, business improvement efforts should be based on best practices that research indicates deliver value quickly. Our Value Index evaluates business systems and tools in accordance with that belief.
We advocate using the Value Index as part of a structured approach that begins by incorporating these steps into a program document that will both summarize and detail your initiative or project. Then consult the Value Index to ensure you make choices that will yield the results you want.
Develop the business case for investment. Define the mission of the business project: What is it to do, why is it important, what outcome do you want to achieve and how will you measure the project’s success? The goals should be grounded in your organization’s strategy and plans and should make clear the expected outcomes.
What must be done to achieve these goals? Defining the business requirements helps identify what specific capabilities are required with respect to people, processes, information and technology.
Assess and specify the individuals required for the project at every level of the organization from executives to front line workers and what each will contribute.
What needs to be done, in what order, and who will do it? This outline should make clear the prior dependencies at each step of the project plan.
Determine the technology approach that most closely aligns to your organization’s requirements. Then develop the long list of potential vendors and products that best fit your needs.
Define the business and technology criteria that you will use to evaluate vendors. We recommend using the criteria we have developed based on our benchmark research and use to build the Value Index: usability, manageability, reliability, functionality, adaptability, validation and TCO and ROI. This step will provide the tool to enable you to move from the long list to a short list of vendors and products to evaluate for final selection.
Weight the seven categories of technology evaluation criteria to reflect your business’s priorities. Then evaluate the short list of vendors based on your business case and requirements and the technology evaluation criteria for your project.
Identify who will lead the project and the members of the team to plan and execute it. Have them begin by establishing a time line and allocating resources.
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