Specific technology for your business model is a love/hate thing.
You love it when it’s all installed and working correctly, but could certainly dislike the process of getting to that point. It often means more demos, more research, hours of contemplating and analyzing, often with multiple team members whose schedules don't match up with yours, etc., etc… It can be frustrating and, if you're the point person making the decision, there can be a lot at stake, too. Even though the process can be all of these things, spending time asking the right questions and reaching the best conclusion for your organization is worth the time expended.
If you conduct advocacy and need your members to get involved in order to affect public policy, how can you effectively evaluate a technical solution?
Here are some broad points many will already understand:
- It starts with the end in mind. What's the organizational goal for this particular piece of software? What are we trying to accomplish? What are our essential requirements versus nice-to-haves?
- Does this need to be integrated with our primary organizational software or can the advocacy platform stand alone?
- Who are the industry players in this area? Research their sites for features and benefits.
- Set up demos and analyze the features and functions, and map what each vendor offers to your requirements.