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HRDs’ guide to successful software implementation – Part 2: Choosing your vendor

SUNITI VYAS | 6 SEPTMBER 2023

Before diving into the exciting process of choosing your vendor, be sure to read Part 1: Identifying your requirements to take a look at how you can decide on whether you need a new HR software, and identify exactly what you need from it.

Now that you know exactly what you need from your HR software, a report on what you would like to achieve, and perhaps most importantly, your organisation behind you in this decision after building your brilliant business case, it’s time to choose a vendor.

Before speaking to the vendor

Remember the heatmap and criteria report? Well, we need those again! Before going to the vendor, it’s crucial that you have your requirements clear because vendors can be persuasive, but this is all about what you want, and finding your perfect match.

At this point, the excitement created by inevitable vendor-website-clicking will begin to creep in… However, use the information and resources on these websites wisely – do they have the recruitment module you really wanted? Do they work with similar clients to your organisation? Perhaps one software provider has something you need, but another one does it better – take this time to prioritise what is most important to you and, slowly, you will start to see the best matches.

Once you’ve done this research, we recommend that you meet 6 vendors for demos – time to book!

Putting together a request for proposal

When booking the demo, you’ll probably be asked to send a request for proposal. Now, it is of utmost importance that you articulate your requirements as clearly and as transparently as possible. During this process, it’s important that you remain in the driving seat, and communicating exactly what you want is a great way to do that.

Take a look at our brilliant resources for this stage of the process, which include supplier shortlist overviews, example request for proposal templates, and an example evaluation criteria!

Vendor Shorlisting Resources

Being realistic

As well as the request for proposal, there will be other resources required from your side, which means that this process will take both time and patience. For instance, a recruitment module demo will likely require a recruitment staff member to be present, and the same applies to other modules that your chosen vendors will demo for.

Resultingly, this process usually takes 3-5 months, so avoid leaving it last minute!

During this time, you will start building relationships with vendors, but make sure to try to get information from them as objectively as possible, and not just hear what they want to sell you – ultimately, you want to remain in charge. One way you can do this is by giving them scenarios.

E.g. “I’ve just had an employee that will require emergency absence for the next 2 weeks. What’s the process I need to go through to log this on your software?”

This way, you give them scenarios to play out, you tell them what demos to give you, and you tick off your list of requirements, not theirs. In fact, this will probably also make their job easier, as vendors have a plethora of features, many of which you may not need – so through your strong communication, they can show you what you are most interested in… it’s a win-win!

Next steps

Okay, so you’ve seen the vendor websites, you’ve done the demos, and now you’ve decided which one you’re going to go for. What next?

For a guide on how to turn plans into operations and have a smooth, seamless implementation process, watch out for the upcoming Part 3 of this series. To ensure you don’t miss it, be sure to connect with us on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter to be among the first to view out latest releases. And, of course, keep an eye on our website to stay up-to-date with lots of useful resources to guide you through all your HR software needs!

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