Your Reasons for Software System Change

This week, we continue with this guide to Assessing Your Agency’s Readiness for a COTS Solution with further examination of the process to Prepare Your RFP Package by defining your fundamental reasons for software system change and your critical success factors. 

To start, it’s beneficial to provide a description to assist vendors in understanding the “pain” factors that exist in your organization and how they are drivers for finding a new software solution.

Business and organizational pain is often growth driven. In such cases, a forecast of growth rates or a description of anticipated system scalability is valuable. Pain may also be driven by the need to replace outdated or unsupported technology. In such cases, vendors have a need to understand any critical timelines or dates for crossover to the new system as well as the expected life of the new software solution. To assist in this, it is vitally important to define all the factors that are demanding that your organization spend time and money on a new system.

Yours steps to define these factors should focus on the following efforts:

Your Critical Success Factors

The above information provides vendors with a sense of what the priorities are in your organization, how your organization is likely to evaluate proposed software solutions, and how your organization could determine its own level of readiness for a POSSE implementation. It is important to understand how your organization will define project “success” so that deliverables can be measured and the project team maintains accountability to the project plan.

In our experience, an average-sized regulatory software system can be implemented within 12 to 18 months. Larger implementations may be phased into two or three smaller projects of similar duration. With these timelines in mind, it’s important to indicate any mandatory or drop-dead timelines for project start, system “go live” and project conclusion.

NEXT WEEK: The process to fully define your business requirements.