History[ edit ] Inwith financial backing from Microsoftco-founder Paul Allen started an e-commerce start-up called Mercata with a business plan dubbed "We Commerce". The website offered high-end electronic deals to shoppers online. Individual web shoppers would sign up en-masse to buy the same product and the price of the product would fall as more people signed up to buy it.
Contributors In this article This article is part of our "From the Trenches" collection. It describes how prospective software purchasers can make interactions with software vendors more effective by applying easily understood business analysis methods.
It walks you through an exercise that can help create software evaluation criteria by effectively determining what problems need to be addressed by the software solution.
To see more articles, see "From the Trenches" white papers.
Microsoft is planning to introduce a free version of its Power BI business-intelligence tools/service, and will cut prices on its new, fully featured Pro version. Group buying, also known as collective buying, offers products and services at significantly reduced prices on the condition that a minimum number of buyers would make the rutadeltambor.coms of group buying can be traced to China where it is known as Tuán Gòu (Chinese: 团购) or team buying.. In recent times, group buying websites . Bargaining Power of Suppliers Any organization needs raw materials and this creates buyer-seller relationships between the market and the suppliers. The distribution of power within such relationships varies, but if it lies with the supplier then they can use this influence to dictate prices and availability.
Being a Solutions Buyer All too often, a software purchase is based on a list of features, an advertising campaign, or a friend's recommendation. This article describes how prospective software purchasers can make interactions with software vendors more effective by applying easily understood business analysis methods.
It's sure not like it used to be. Getting software working in an enterprise setting isn't even referred to as installation any more. Nowadays, the terms implementation or deployment better describe what is needed to get a new package up and running.
More and more software vendors are speaking about what they sell as solutions, and it's no wonder.
When we think about deploying an enterprise system like Microsoft Project Server or Microsoft CRM, we have to first think about the different layers of technology that will be involved, and—before we even get to that—we have to think about the impact on our overall business.
With solutions to sell comes, of course, solutions sales. If you've followed this at all, you know that almost every high tech organization on the planet that targets mid to large organizations is working to re-create itself as a solutions sales deliverer.
Microsoft is certainly among these organizations. Microsoft has worked extensively over the last few years to establish solutions selling as a guiding principle in its field sales and implementation forces. So what is a solutions salesperson?
It's true they're still a salesperson. However, solutions salespeople aim not just to move a box of software, but to build something that helps the client improve their situation. Sounds great so far; a Nirvana of salespeople all looking to improve your lot in life.
But this does come with a challenge, and addressing that challenge is something in which you—the prospective client—can participate. Focusing on the problem The challenge that most solutions salespeople face when they arrive to the market is our preconception about what a solution should look like.
We're so used to focusing on functions and features of software, when we speak to a software salesperson the conversation almost inevitably leads directly to, "Can your software do this? Can your software do that?
Vendors like Microsoft and its partners receive many Requests for Proposals each year. I've seen hundreds of them over the years, and one thing that is almost always present is a long grid of functions that the vendor is expected to fill in. This large spreadsheet often is the core of the reply to the client.
What is rarely present is a description of the business needs that will be addressed by each of these functions. It's so easy to get caught up in a feature we're familiar with from a previous product or that we've seen promoted somewhere that it takes real discipline to focus on what got us interested in this new product in first place.
This can be especially so in an enterprise setting where there is a lot of input into what type of solution is being sought. It's much easier to send out a request asking for people to list all the functions that they'd like in a new software system than it is to talk about their particular business needs.
If you're starting to think that perhaps you've been missing something obvious, you're not alone. This condition is so prevalent in the software industry at the moment that a new category of consultant called Business Analyst has sprung up.
These people are trained to make the connection from business need to software functionality.
Let's take a few minutes to see how you can apply the basic concepts—in the way that a Business Analyst would apply them—in your evaluations of enterprise level software. Identifying the business need The first thing to think about is what business need brought you to look for a new software system in the first place.
Our own organization often consults companies on implementing enterprise project management software. When I arrive in an organization as a consultant, long before we talk about whether to buy software, I ask how the organization is doing project management right now. When they finish their answer, I always ask this follow-up question: For me the implementation conversation has to stop there.
The answers can vary widely, and it's not uncommon for people to look around the room realizing that there are several agendas under way which must be reconciled—and our conversation is less than five minutes old!
So, asking "What is our business need? There is almost always an overall goal which answers this question—a goal that jump-started the initiative in the first place.Nov 14, · REDMOND, Wash.
— Nov. 14, — On Monday, Microsoft Corp. announced its largest purchase of wind energy to date with the signing of two agreements. Combined, these agreements represent megawatts of wind energy, which brings Microsoft’s total investment in wind energy projects in the U.S.
to more than . Being a solutions buyer. 11/19/; 14 minutes to read Contributors. Microsoft has worked extensively over the last few years to establish solutions selling as a guiding principle in its field sales and implementation forces.
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Microsoft is planning to introduce a free version of its Power BI business-intelligence tools/service, and will cut prices on its new, fully featured Pro version.