Parts 1 and 2 of this series addressed software surprises that can cause delays and expense to a food service administrator. Consider the fiscal and operational advantages of Web-based software, where all your applications are hosted on a secure Web server. You can reduce expenses related to the IT infrastructure. Consider these….
With a subscription to Web-based software, your hardware investment is greatly reduced. Of course, this means you can skip common replacement expenses, such as a network server, server operating system, server software utilities, backups, and associated expenses.
If you’re mapping out multi-year cost comparisons for food service software options, these expenses factor in.
IT staffing and expertise factor in as well. A key reason for selecting Software as a Service (SaaS) solutions is to reduce the operating expenses associated with software—and maximize your return on investment.
Healthcare organizations are choosing SaaS for a broad range of applications for exactly these reasons. SaaS software, such as Web-based Vision Software Online, deliver predictable costs you can control.
A difficult expense to quantify in the software acquisition planning process is the unexpected costs that occur if the system doesn’t work. What happens when your network server is down? Or the software doesn’t function correctly? What are your back-up plans, and what will contingencies cost you in labor, patient safety, and patient satisfaction?
Safeguards against surprises like these are three-fold:
- Know the reliability factor of the software solution you choose. Talk to current clients. Ask about the track record of vendors with regard to specific functionality.
- Know whose job it is to ensure the system is always up-and-running. With SaaS—no worries.
- Find out what technical support services are available to you if you have questions—and what it will cost you to access these services. Are they free to you as a software subscriber?
In all, it’s difficult to compare apples-to-apples when you’re evaluating food service solutions. It’s all about asking the right questions to avoid back-end surprises. Want a second opinion? Call me for a free consultation.