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9 questions to ask before you buy any HR software

by on
in HR Management,Human Resources

A simple Google search for “HR software” will return a mind-numbing half million results. 

All those vendors will promise efficient, easy-to-use, cost-effective software. Some systems live up to the hype, and some don’t.

To select the right vendor and software for your organization, arm yourself with these nine questions to narrow your search:

1. How do you determine the price? Vendors typically price software in one of three ways: (1) the number of “seats” that use the software; (2) the number of concurrent users—no matter where they sit—who access the software at a given time; or (3) the number of computers or servers that run the software. Decide which pricing structure best suits your needs.

2. Is the software “scalable”?
That is, can the software grow with your company without excessive additional spending or customization? Ask: At what size will the company outgrow the software?

3. Which companies use the software? What is the average size of business users?

4. Do you offer free on-site service and support? It should come with higher-priced items. But if not, ask that it be part of the contract. Some vendors charge for training, customization, troubleshooting and installation. Vendors should provide some kind of on-site service even if it’s only free installation.

5. What is the return policy? Do you offer a satisfaction guarantee? Some vendors allow customers to get at least a partial refund if they back out within a certain number of days. If there is no return policy, ask the vendor to include one in the contract.

6. What costs aren’t included? Ask about the costs for maintenance, hardware and software upgrades, installation and leasing.

7. What’s your policy on program updates? Some vendors provide updates to customers only when they complain about a problem. Some provide updates as they become available.

8. Is the software compatible with my network, hardware and data?
Will the software interface with other systems such as payroll? Software compatibility increases efficiency and cuts costs.

9. Can you provide references of businesses of similar size in the same industry? Then ask those references: How has the system increased HR efficiency and cut costs? Which functions are most helpful? What don’t you like about the system? What do you think about the vendor’s customer service?

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