At NexJ, we take great pride in being a responsive vendor. This is a big part of our value proposition – our desire to be a strategic partner who contributes to our clients’ success. If you’re making a software purchase, I strongly recommend you factor vendor responsiveness into the decision making process. It’s an invaluable intangible. So what exactly do I mean by ‘responsive vendor’?
First, as the name implies, a responsive vendor is one that listens to your needs; endeavours to meet them in the fastest, most effective way; and provides overall superior service and support. But there are other factors involved in being a responsive vendor that may be less obvious. Here are some questions you should ask:
- Do they work with your timelines, as tight as they may be? Or do they put your project in a queue that suits their schedule?
- Do they provide a flexible solution and the willingness to make it suit your unique business needs?
- Do they roll broad-market applicable modifications made by clients into their product to ensure everyone benefits from the best practices of large and successful firms in their industry?
- Do they solicit your input into the solution with membership on a strategic advisory council that helps guide the product and technology roadmap?
These are all critical factors in rolling out the best solution for your business. So how can you tell if you’re dealing with a responsive vendor? The first step is to look at their response to your RFP. Is it tailored to your company or is it a generic sales pitch? Does it show that they took the time to understand your business, requirements, and existing infrastructure?
The next test is the Demo or Proof of Concept. Do they listen to your needs, show you everything you ask, and promptly provide any extra information you request, such as a video to show other users or decision makers?
The last step is to ask for proof – what examples can the vendor provide of their willingness and ability to address the questions above?
What other factors do you think indicate a responsive vendor? Comment below or email me – I’d love to hear your insight.