7 Must Knows before Investing in Product Information Management

Implementing product information management or PIM for short, offers choices. Some are confusing. Focus on low hanging fruit is my advice. Here are 7 things to know:

  1. Find Vendor Expertise:  Vendors are good at demo gymnastics. When given a short time to demo, vendors can come up w/ stuff that looks good. Focus on references. Talk to companies that use and have been using the vendor tool to make sure. Trust but verify vendor speak and credentials.
  2. Seek and find Flexibility: Scalability extensibility are key. Map the vendor solution to existing business process and see how it shapes up. Avoid big bang deployments, Vendors’ speak “Holy Grail,” yet find a tool which can be phased, eating low hanging fruit first. Shed a brite lite on the data model. How flexible? Can hierarchies be built and edited? Can your existing data model be used?
  3. How Open is the PIM solution? : Old news. Proprietary vs. Open technology. Put straight, open is easier to adapt and integrated to apps being used now. Does PIM application use proprietary database? Is routes of PIM in catalog management vs. ecommerce? Find out.
  4. Data Sources and Where are they? : The biggest challenge to a PIM deployment are data migration and data integration. Learn all data sources. Map out flows, in and out. where are images? How is product data received and enriched to product information? Do this first or find a vendor that knows this stuff and will help map, on their dime.
  5. Detailed Statement of Work: Get details on precise PIM implementation steps and time frames. Important. Through reference details, learn what was promised by the PIM vendor and what was delivered. Beware low ball services estimates. Dirty trick is to low ball for favorable position and then to come back to well.
  6. Prove Value: Is vendor willing to contractually baseline delivery?
  7. Risk Mitigation: Is vendor willing to work on a pricing model to mitigate risk and to find ROI faster?

    About Sales Pro
    Master Data Management and Product information management solutions.

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