Welcome to part four of our blog series, Five Steps for Selecting an Agency Management System. The last post in this series discussed how your budget plays a role in choosing an agency management system. Now it's time to make a decision!
Step 4: Making a Decision
You might be thinking, “Wait, we’re already on step four and we haven’t made a decision yet?”
When choosing an agency management system, you’re choosing an incredibly important part of your business - just as important as hiring a new employee. Just as you wouldn't make an offer to the first person you interview, you shouldn't purchase an agency management system after one sales presentation.
Now that you've done your homework in steps one, two and three, you’re ready to compare and select an agency management system for your business.
If you haven’t yet involved your sales and support staff in reviewing agency management systems, now is a great time to bring them in and understand their wants and needs. Understanding the functions of their job and their pain points will help you create a “must-have list” and a “wish list.”
Must-have lists will help you start eliminating providers that don’t meet your basic needs. Items on a must-have list should include things that each part of your business needs to function - commission tracking for your finance department, sales data for your sales staff, employee performance reports for you.
Wish lists will help you to break ties between providers that have everything you require. This list should include the things that are great to have, but aren't absolutely necessary for day-to-day operations. Here is where you can include items like having the ability to process commissions or store an unlimited number of documents.
It’s likely you haven’t changed or upgraded your agency management system in several years - or maybe you’re purchasing one for the first time. Remember to consider new features and more efficient ways of doing business in your choices. Determining your business requirements is often the hardest part of choosing an agency management system.
In a study done by Capterra, based on a 2013 survey of 400 business professionals that had helped make an enterprise software purchase, they found 71% of software buyers turned to their colleagues and peers for recommendations during the purchase process (Software Buying Trends 2013). If a system has a feature you don’t have now or is doing something differently than you, ask questions and see how others are using those features. You may discover efficiencies you hadn't considered before.
Watch the recorded webinar:
Feel like you're missing something? The full series: