IT for Business: Advice on Choosing the Right Software for Your Business

by stephenreis on April 19, 2010

While the demand for small business software has grown, one could make the argument that the understanding of software has not kept pace. Many enterprises – small and large alike – don’t have a fundamental understanding of the software needs of their business.

This makes the IT department even more critical, and this is where many businesses fall down.

The #1 Mistake Many Businesses Make when Buying Software

Many businesses fail to fully rely on IT to help them assess their software needs. The reason is, many businesses don’t integrate IT into their business’s overall strategic plan. It is often an afterthought. However, in order to get the perfect software fit for your company, your IT department and/or IT consulting firm should be a primary contributor to any decision you make. Why?

Why You Should Consult the IT Department before Making any Software Decisions for Your Biz

Because they’re going to be the ones who train you in its use; tell you what it can do; what it can’t do; and what it should do. Making them part of the decision from the get go will be so much more cost effective because they’re also going to the ones to install it, maintain it and troubleshoot it.

Now that you know why IT is critical in helping you select the right software for your business, following are a few tips for how to actually go about it.

Use Software Trials

Finding the right software for your business is going to take some research. Take advantage of free online demonstrations and free trial periods.

Get Employee Input

Get your staff involved because they are the ones who will be using it the most. Ask for their feedback, not only on how the software operates, but also find out if it meets their needs effectively. You might want to make up a feedback form with a few questions like: on a scale of 1-5 how user friendly is it; does it freeze up; is it easy to parse data; etc.

Shop Around

No matter how quickly you fall in love with a piece of software, shop around. It’s the only way to guarantee that you’ll get the best rate – and the best software for your business needs.

Find Out About Licensing Terms

Small business software is usually sold/rented under a license. This means there are usage restrictions, e.g., you can only load it on so many systems. So always, always inquire about software’s licensing terms before investing in it.

Get IT Involved

This bears repeating. No matter how much you and/or your employees like a piece of software, get the input of the IT department. They may know something that you and/or your employees don’t that could make it a “no,” instead of a “go.”

Stephen Reis writes for, an online resource for those looking for more information about remote desktop printing solutions. When it comes to selecting remote printing software, he recommends ScrewDrivers from triCerat.

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