Software substitutions: How to strategically save money and supercharge business success

Ignite is proud to share our advice in navigating the upcoming uncertainty of 2021 in this 4-part blog series compiled from expert resources, client feedback, and our own experiences. Be sure to check out Part 1: Budget, Part 2: Tech Stack and Part 3: Remote Workspace as well! 

As the final entry to our 2021 planning series, we wanted to dive deeper into how to make budget, tech stack and workspace changes that stick through simple software substitutions. 

2020’s crisis mode forced many companies to make tough decisions quickly, purely for survival. While those actions may have been necessary to meet short-term needs, we want to help you take the long-term actions that will benefit your organization in 2021 and beyond.

As we previously reported in our budget planning blog, organizations are struggling to find savings across the board, particularly around their software consumption and optimization. According to McKinsey: “In [a] 2017 survey, nearly half of executives ranked cost savings as one of the most important priorities for their digital strategies. Now, only 10 percent view technology in the same way; in fact, more than half say they are investing in technology for competitive advantage or refocusing their entire business around digital technologies.” Software replacements are easy means to unlock budget for the end goal of digital transformation.

Replacing software with minimal hassle

Oftentimes when the prospect of a software replacement arises, the headache seems greater than the payoff. With a significant volume of change already occurring due to the pandemic, is now really the time to be introducing new software? The answer is: absolutely. Virtually all organizations have felt the impact of COVID-19 globally, and that means cost savings are imperative, be they human capital or otherwise. The latter choices are, naturally, easier to make, particularly if savings can be made through existing entitlements, such as software solutions. For example, Ignite’s Prime Unlimited program offers customers unlimited access to a Netflix-style library of solutions — many of them cloud-based — that can be activated at no cost based on their existing contract. That said, as a starting point, there are a number of things to consider when looking at swapping software:

  • Price: This is often the simplest factor to consider for a software replacement. Is the money you’re paying worth the value you get from the product? If you reduce spend by substituting competitive software, are you generating value? Will freeing up the budget here unlock opportunities to generate value by allocating budget to other areas?
  • Soft Costs: What are the additional costs to your organization beyond the figure on the invoice? How much will you spend in time, training and disruption during the migration?
  • Time: How much time will it take to migrate from one solution to another? Will the crossover be seamless, or will there be a period of duplication?

Another important consideration is weighing consolidation with a vendor vs. diversification with multiple vendors. There’s no right or wrong answer; it all depends on the specifics of the situation:

  • Price: Again, are you receiving more value with two different vendors, or does consolidation save money and generate value? What is the difference in soft costs?
  • Integration: Do you generate more value by having two solutions by the same vendor integrated with each other? Or can you deliver the same results with piecemeal solutions from multiple vendors?
  • Performance: Is the vendor’s second or third solution up to the standards of their main solution? Will the budget you unlock from switching to a below-best-in-class solution create enough value in other areas to make it a net gain?

There’s no one-size-fits all tech stack, so you have to find the right combination that works for you and use opportunities to save money wherever possible. That’s why we offer our Prime Unlimited program to provide truly no-cost solutions to our customers, because our broad selection of products helps our customers realize more value across a variety of needs and saves them money across the board. We help our customers unlock budget to make further investments in other areas of their business.

Here are some of the top software substitutions available at no-cost for Ignite customers:

We hope this guide will help organize your thoughts as you examine potential software replacements to implement in 2021. Making these structural changes ahead of time is the key to keeping your organization thriving, no matter the circumstances.

At Ignite, we’ve used our own software replacements to streamline our processes and make our teams more successful, and we really hope this guide is useful for you. We’re committed to 100% customer success and that means helping our customers in any way we can, like activating your Ignite Prime Unlimited entitlement to add new solutions to your stack that are already included in your contract. Customers leverage Ignite Prime Unlimited in three ways: to add new capabilities, cut costs on tech that they can replace through the Prime Unlimited program and to augment their existing Ignite solution.

Although this concludes our 2021 planning series, keep an eye out in the coming weeks for something exciting we’re bringing to you to truly help you get a head start on the New Year. In the meantime, please don’t hesitate to contact your Ignite customer advisor at any time for an assessment of your remote landscape for an optimal 2021.