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Print Software ROI

Getting the return on investment for print software takes a lot more work by the people at the printer than you are led to believe in the software sales process.

By Jennifer Matt
Published: October 9, 2019

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Jennifer Matt is the managing editor of WhatTheyThink’s Print Software section as well as President of Web2Print Experts, Inc. a technology-independent print software consulting firm helping printers with web-to-print and print MIS solutions. You can reach her at jen@whattheythink.com.

 

Discussion

By Corry Casler - PressWise on Oct 09, 2019

“The one thing that is never mentioned in a print software sale is the amount of work your business, your team, and your leadership has to put forth in order to reap the potential.”

I usually subscribe to your views Jennifer and the overall point you make in the article is solid; however, I respectfully disagree with the statement above.

Implementing MIS, ERP, CRM or any other acronym software is a team effort between vendor and client and to leave that out of the sales process is a major disservice that will only come back to bite you later.

Print technology buyers are intelligent creatures. They know print MIS software isn’t just, “Add water and it’s good to go" but still, we always, and I mean always, discuss implementation with prospects during the sales process. We even share a step-by-step action plan to implementing the software during the sales process so prospects know what they can expect from us and what we expect them to do.

It’s good to know there are solid sales teams in our space.

 

By Jennifer Matt on Oct 09, 2019

Corry,

I bet you are right that "the work" is mentioned but nobody remembers it. All they remember is the "potential" this is why I feel so much empathy for the implementation team. The Sales team sells potential, the implementation teams have to deliver a more realistic message. I don't think people are malicious. It is the nature of all sales.

Printers need to invest in software. No matter how much work is involved. If you think you can be competitive running your business with paper-based tracking - good luck. Software is the tool that promises the most efficiencies and is driving force behind automation.

I was of course being very blunt in this article in an attempt to make everyone feel more comfortable setting realistic expectations in the sales process. You have to get through the implementation. Its better for everyone if they know what they are in for.

Jen

 

By Mark Myers on Oct 11, 2019

From Mark Myers CEO Estimator Cloud

Jennifer, Like Corey Casler I to take a bit of umbrage with your perspective. Let’s start with your comment...

“The one thing that is never mentioned in a print software sale is the amount of work your business, your team, and your leadership has to put forth in order to reap the potential.”

We clearly define up front that we have automated the price matching and the installation and the total Printers time required for complete installation is less than 1-Hour...and we usually have the program up and running within 2-Working days

Your next Comment:
“once you buy the software all your business challenges will be solved”.

We make it clear the customer that no Estimating or MIS software will do everything they want the way they want it or are used to doing it. And we clearly explain why we feel that the options available are the most practical and time and money saving.

We agree as stated above with your comment...
” No vendor can take commercial software and configure it to perfectly match

But I also believe that a perfect match is not always even desirable.

I really looked at the following comment with great disbelief...

“Then, your check clears and a different team shows up from the vendor. These people are charging you by the hour and asking you and your team a lot of questions that aren’t easy to answer.”...

Most installations today can be completed on the web and we never charge any extra for either training or installation no matter how long it takes. I know that many systems are installed remotely without any surcharges.True on site installations cost extra but the vendor and the printer should know up front what those costs are.

Further...
“It would be nearly impossible to sell any software to anyone if you were told the real story.”

Although most vendors might have a tendency to gloss over their technical difficulties to make the sale there are those that have no need for that approach as they let the customer use the program for an extended time to test it on a daily basis to see how it fits and what adjustments can be made.

And finally...
“It is an intimate marriage between the software and your business. It is hard work, most of which can only be done by your team.”

I think it is the ONLY part that I am having a problem with as any good vendor will bend over backwards to satisfy the client and most of the work of the fine tuning is on the vendors shoulder as he has the responsibility to meet as best he can his customers requirements.

In closing I want to compliment you on your site and I read it daily ... However, there are other vendors like us who get the job done with minimal interference and in a fast and efficient manner at a reasonable price and at a pace that never puts the customer in the position of feeling he has been taken advantage of.

 

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