Choosing software can be overwhelming, especially with the existence of many products within the market. Software in all of its forms is the leveraging of human effort! Ultimately the software you choose needs to add some value to your life, enhance what you do, or, simply put, make your life easier.
It leverages human effort by taking what we do now using our physical and mental capacities and enhancing these capacities so that we can achieve more with less effort. Software is NOT a replacement for human capacity but an accelerator of it.
The following questions must be answered to choose the perfect software for your business:
Does this software save or waste time?
Does it enhance the effort you are currently doing more efficiently and effectively?
What outcome do you want?
Software is not a one-size fits all solution. Software that works for a small business will not serve the same purpose for your multi-million farm business. It’s important to understand price is not and should not be the deciding factor.
Yes, there are cheap solutions out there, but you are a niche business that requires “custom” software made specifically for your business type that can contribute to the return on investment of the overall financial goal.
You need to plan and invest in crossing the chasm.
A large amount of money and time is needed when implementing new software. People underestimate the resources required to make the investment in new software successful.
There is always a gap or chasm after you have your new software installed and working where people stop putting in time, effort and money. This is where all projects fall into the deep and ultimately fail. People will say:
“We spent x time and money, and it failed”
Often, the effort and investment after installation will need to increase. This is usually in the rollout to the team and training. To stop this problem from happening, you need to be aware of the resources required to cross this chasm and to get a real return on the investment in the software.
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Be careful of being seduced by cheap software.
Cheap software often has a higher total cost of the software solution.
Software Cost x Required Training x Time to achieve valuable results x Trust in Data
e.g. Spread Sheets
Spreadsheets are often used for cash-flow forecasting and financial analysis.
With Excel, software cost is low as most users have it as part of the office package. However, Excel is not the easiest software to use out there. Depending on the functions you want to utilise or the results you want to achieve, sometimes it’s necessary to invest in specialist training. As powerful as Excel is, it’s also a lengthy process to generate a helpful report as it requires manual data entry from your accounting system. Once the report has been generated, how confident are you that the data within the report is 100% accurate? Excel is easy to break, and one change in a formula can have a ripple effort on all the work that you’ve done.
New software is not a magic bullet for your business but chosen well, implemented well and resourced sufficiently, it will drive your business success to new heights.
If you haven’t used Agrimaster before or are in the process of finding the right solution for your farm business, sign-up for a 30-day free trial today! Or, if you like to understand how to choose the right financial management software, read the article There Is No ‘I’ In Farm Software.