Tip 6: You are Choosing a Partner not just a vendor!
You absolutely will need help. At a minimum, you need the skills to implement the initial solution and train your systems administrator and user personnel. Once the initial system is up and running, there will be an occasional need for technical support. While the end result should be a tightly integrated and easy-to-use system, document imaging is not recommended as a “do-it-yourself” project.
The good news is that every vendor offers expertise to get you started. In fact, every vendor will no doubt have the “absolute best service and support in the industry.” While these are obvious goals for any vendor, some do a better job than others. How can you check their track record?
Ask for references. When you call, there are really just two questions you need to ask. First, does the image software solution work? Second, when there is a problem, does the image software provider fix it? You are obviously looking for a YES response to both of these questions!
References are a great way to gather information about a vendor and build your confidence in their ability to perform. However, understand and appreciate that these contacts have a business to run. While they may be willing to discuss their experiences, they are not an extended briefing center and may not be open to on-site visits.
Additionally, it is usually at this site not possible to find references doing exactly what you want using your exact same products located in your exact geography. When it comes to asking for references, don’t be too restrictive with your requests and don’t go overboard, either!
Next week: Tip 7 - It's always about the Money!