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Companies are looking for short-term Return on Investment (ROI) in ERP/CRM systems. Often, nevertheless, unnecessarily many costs are made during the selection phase. This puts pressure on a quick ROI even before the actual implementation has started.

Choosing an ERP/CRM is often purely a matter of emotion, even though as a buyer you like to present things otherwise. Many companies work from a longlist towards a shortlist to make the final choice based on the latter. A relevant question is what you require from the vendors, phase by phase. And how much time and energy you yourself will dedicate to it.

Presenting all the vendors on the longlist with RFI’s with more than a thousand (!) questions is asking too much. Especially if you decide afterwards that some of them can be erased from the list “because they lack references in your sector”. You could have figured this out with less effort, right?

In order to prevent possible reproaches you choose to allow the vendors about whom you had your doubts to participate as well. But who actually profits from such an approach?

How this process can be improved. First, at a management level, decide upon the five most important selection criteria. Use these criteria to filter out two vendors and only then start going into depth. In this way you save a lot of time and energy. And you are keeping your selection costs under control. Moreover, this approach displays more respect towards your vendors.