“Off-the-Shelf” Software | Selection & Implementation or Custom Software Design & Implementation
Most organizations, start-ups as well as established organizations, need assistance in two key areas:
- Defining the business requirements for new software systems
- Getting such projects across the finish line
This is true for “off-the-shelf” as well as custom software systems.
The old adage “if you don’t know where you’re going, any road will get there” isn’t appropriate when it comes to selecting and implementing new software systems.
Too many companies rely on technology vendors (who they mistakenly presume fully understand their business challenges) to help them sort through the requirements of what will be needed to efficiently run all or a portion of their business.
All too often, organizations learn the hard way that, while technology vendors know a great deal about their technology, they know very little about how your business runs or what the requirements are to run your business.
It is imperative that you have a strong sense of what your business challenges and requirements are before trying to acquire and adapt the software system to the challenge. Many organizations approach this the opposite way with less than satisfactory results.
For those of you who may be saying, “Well, Gardner & Associates Consulting doesn’t understand all the minute details and idiosyncrasies of our business,” you would be correct! We don’t. And, we don’t need to. Why?
We take you through a structured process to uncover your needs so they can be properly examined and understood by your organization as well as the technology vendors.
Often the question isn’t “what is the application capable of doing,” but, “what must it do to support our business today and tomorrow?”
We have assisted organizations in the following ways:
- Define the application requirements from the perspective of solving one or more business problems or challenges
- Help the people who will be using the application day in and day out interface with the technology vendor and/or custom software development team so they understand the business requirements
- Integrate the new application with the business process
- Define processes for populating the new application with data either from current applications or from other data sources
- Act as project manager to coordinate and orchestrate activities amongst the users and technology vendor(s)
- Develop training programs that explain the new application and business processes
We provide the focused energy to get the projects on track and keep them on track. Our expertise and experience have proven to be invaluable in ensuring that our clients end up with an application that adds value to the organization.
If your company is considering the implementation of a new software system, you need to be aware of what makes Gardner & Associates different from technology consultants.
We are management consultants
We are independent of any technology solution providers. We look for the best technology fit based on our client’s needs. We don’t try to force a specific technology into a client’s business.
We look at problems “holistically”. We’re concerned about your problem from the perspective of solving a specific challenge across the enterprise and, in some cases, even beyond the enterprise to the extended enterprise (Dealers and Customers), not simply addressing a departmental problem within a company.
We’re concerned about all dimensions of your problem
- Business process
- User interface – inputs and outputs of the application
- Integration points with users
- Integration points with other I.T. applications
- Integration of the “knowledge” with the I.T. applications
- Creation, maintenance and status reporting of data
We integrate and define. We have to integrate and, in most cases, define the business process with the technology.
We define the mission for the technology consultants.
We’re not technology consultants
- There is no “one-size-fits-all” technology solution–each vendor tends to represent their solution can “do it all”
- Technology that may have worked well in one company may be inappropriate from a company in the same business or industry
- Technology consultants don’t do “management consulting” – they provide electronic infrastructure but often know little about the underlying business process or business problem–they rely on firms like ours to assist them.
- They are the builders of roads – they can’t tell you where the road should be or what it should look like
We have the ability to write about and communicate complex principles across the enterprise. Our track record and expertise helping clients be more successful in dealing with technology consultants and deploying new applications. We also do training and high pragmatic in our operations.
Take the Next Step:
Here are a number of different ways we can be of service to you as you begin or continue your journey: