Part 3. What should you ask of a vendor’s other clients?
After you have received information from and vetted potential BPMS vendors, seen their demos, and considered the fit of their offers to your specific requirements, you may be ready to select one and sign on the dotted line…
But before you do, it’s a good idea to talk to some of their other customers. Ask the vendor to give you a list of clients that you can contact to ask about their experience with the product.
The third part of the BPMS Buyer’s Kit, “What to Ask a Reference Customer,” offers a set of questions you should ask of the vendor’s references.
Ask specifically to talk to customers who are using the product in production. Then consider these questions—and listen carefully to the answers.
1. How long did it take from the beginning of process design until production, and how did that compare with your expectations?
2. Which features and benefits have made the most positive impression on management and end users? Have you achieved your expected return on investment?
3. If the vendor or a partner was responsible for project management for the installation, how would you rate their performance, with respect to timelines, cost control, communication with stakeholders?
4. When you report problems or bugs to the vendor, do they address the problems quickly and effectively?
5. How much of the vendor’s training did you use, and what were the trainees’ impressions?
6. Are your users satisfied with the vendor’s documentation?
7. What aspects of this vendor are you happiest with? Where could they improve? Will you use them again?
See the BPMS Buyer’s Kit for more! What other questions do you recommend should be asked of customer references?