Given the many calibration management software solutions available in the marketplace, how do you choose the best solution for your company?
When evaluating software, it’s important to be well-versed with your internal and external requirements and processes; such as ISO or FDA, as well as specific industry requirements and your customers’ requirements.
Mid-to-high range software packages will generally provide a solution focused on continuous adherence to common industry standards (ISO, FDA, etc.), as well as scalability and reliable product support and services. Some low-end packages will provide compliance with current industry standards, but usually the companies providing these solutions do not have the capital resources to keep current with new technologies or changing standards. Generally, low-end solutions provide a “quick fix” and are not a worthwhile investment for companies seeking a long-term or large scale deployment of a calibration management solution.
To help you find the right calibration management software solution, start by answering these basic questions:
1. What benefits do you need the solution to provide your company; in addition to the requirements demanded by customers and/or industry standards?
2. Does the software need to integrate with existing company software systems; can it be a standalone software solution?
3. Does the software need to meet specific technology requirements set by your IT department?
4. While competing software packages provide some common features, which solutions meet your company’s technology needs?
5. Does the solution provide options for live product support and training?
6. Will the solution allow for data import from your current system?
7. What is the product development path/timetable of the software?
Look for an established software provider with long-standing industry expertise and one that offers a calibration software solution as their main product offering. These companies are typically selling solutions, not just software. They will have more knowledge about your industry and are usually interested in your continued success with their product. Therefore, look for the company which asks a lot of questions about your business; these companies are genuinely interested in a good fit and a long term relationship.
Solutions-minded software companies will also offer continued support and training for their products; support and training help to ensure successful implementation and utilization. Always ask about support services and training availability; these areas are critical to the success of any software implementation.