Software quality is becoming a very important issue with both packaged software and custom application development. In the past, new software features were the basic focus of software sales.
Now, people are focused on software quality and reliability. Software quality can be improved by purchasers during the selection and implementation process if they focus on avoiding seven common pitfalls.
These seven killers of quality software include:
1. Avoid the effort of collecting specific business requirements for each operating unit and how the software will have to adjust to each division. There was a strong tendency of software vendors to promise that their program is a magic bullet that solves all problems. Understanding requirements and matching them against program performance is the only way to address this issue.
2. Avoid difficult software choices by forcing the new software to function exactly like the old. It will cost you far less in the long run to get a solid software package versus the tendency of putting lipstick on a pig to pretty up what you have.
3. Avoid the effort in conducting extensive use case analyses. If you do not take the time to fully understand each operating division’s requirements, you will end up with a system that will require major modifications or heavy customization.
4. Avoid paying top tier consultants to advise on the product selection and implementation process.
5. Avoid unnecessary customization. Each time you customize a product, you increase the potential for conflicts between the current system and the new product.
6. Avoid putting together a project plan. Assigning the management of this project to an outside vendor reduces overall programming quality.
7. Avoiding the truth. It is essential for vendor and buyer to avoid mutual mystification in which both vendor and buyer believe that the other party is taking care of the details.
8. Avoid the use of an event tracking system. Projects are like people – if you don’t track something, we won’t do it.
Conclusions: If you can clearly define your project’s goals and following the tactics shown above, you stand a much better chance of success in your purchasing endeavors. Focus on honesty, clarity, and integrity in communication.