Farm software purchasing tips
Use our handy hints to help short list and identify the correct software solution for your farm.
View a live demonstration or try the software yourself
If there is a free trial of a solution, try it yourself. If your farm is large, any solution for a large farm requires at least some training and configuration to work for complex business requirements, in that case book a live demonstration with your shortlisted software vendors. Most vendors can perform a demonstration online and over the phone. You will be able to ask questions and view the solution in action and ask how your specific farm processes will be supported. Unfortunately, no two farms are exactly the same, and no software will meet an exact 100% match for.
Read the specifications
For medium to large farms, viewing and interactive demonstration of farm software is very useful, however, reading the full specifications of the farm software should provide a full insight into the details of the software. Specifications should outline in detail how each feature/module works, including farm processes, and technical detail. An example of farm software specifications from vendor farmsoft can be viewied by clicking here. Avoid purchasing farm software from any vendor that doesn’t provide specifications (note: ‘specifications’ refers to user level specifications, not technical design specifications).
Ask about support services, most vendors will provide various levels of support to choose from. If a vendor does not have a support service you should avoid purchasing from them. If your first language is English and the vendor doesn't use English as their first language, be wary as support may be difficult to use.
Service Level Agreement & Disaster Recovery Plan
Software vendors that can provide these items immediately upon request are generally quite professional. The SLA should detail service availability and uptime, data backup systems, and redundancy plans, and compensation plans if the service level is not met during a specified period. Any vendor that cannot provide these items immediately should be avoided.