Farm safety software solution: Subscription vs Single Purchase
Subscription offerings are not a new concept for many of us. You are probably a subscriber to multiple services already; your phone and internet provider, newspapers, newsletters and magazines, leasing of farming equipment, even that latest podcast you listen to and the TV series you just finished on Netflix. Most of these subscriptions are types that require an investment, but is a subscription service better than a one-off purchase for your farm safety software solution?
The safety software itself.
We know that when purchasing a product off the shelf there is a monetary risk involved, and the software that you are purchasing may not be fit for purpose in the long run. As a business grows and evolves their reliance and requirements of supporting technology needs to keep up. Most users don’t truly understand the usefulness of a software solution until they start to implement it into day to day operations, that is the real test. Whilst there is no guarantee with any type of software, an off the shelf product may suit your needs now, but will it suit your purpose in 3 months, 6 months or a year?
When signing up for a subscription software service, there is less financial risk upfront and you won’t feel the need to persist if the product isn’t the right fit for your agribusiness.
Subscription offerings tend to be more convenient and provide flexibility for you, the user. Software as a Service (SaaS) companies tend to maintain their products, constantly developing and providing updates for optimum performance as well as upgrading and introducing new features. Can you say the same for your off-the-shelf software? Is it consistently being updated or are your upgrades included in the original purchase cost?
The customer support.
The very livelihood of a subscription service depends on you, the user, repeat purchasing. This is where customer support plays a significant role. What pressure is there for a software provider of off-the-shelf products to maintain reliable customer support? They have profited immediately at the time of your purchase, but complete that contact us form they suggested to you when you rang, and someone will assist you…
As a subscription service, the customer support team are there to help so you keep you coming back. A safety software solution that operates based on a subscription model must earn your business, the motivation comes from not only helping you, but retaining your subscription. A majority of these subscription services will also want you to have the best user experience possible, this generally includes a manned client support phone line or chat bot as well as an implementation team to help you get up and running, successfully using their safety software solution.
The final and frequently asked question is – what is more cost effective? There is no perfect answer to this query and it really depends on what you want to get out of the software. Off-the-shelf solutions come with a large upfront fee and could end up costing you a lot more in the long run. Why I hear you ask? You invest time into researching services and products, eliminating those that are not the right fit, you narrow down your final options and make your one off, expensive purchase only to discover… it isn’t what you thought.
A subscription software model can appear less intimidating when purchasing monthly or yearly. It reduces barriers, making purchase more achievable for a service that may not have been affordable as a one-off payment. This is also a great selling point when trying to get buy-in from those higher up. Yes we also get that you invest time and energy getting your system set up and operational, but at the end of the day, if it isn’t assisting your business in the way you need it to, you have the ease of moving on.
As a safety software solution, Safe Ag Systems aims to provide the agricultural community with value. Whether that value be in our consistent and reliable support, return on investment, our software development and as a premium safety compliance management tool. Experience Safe Ag Systems risk free with our 7-day free trial!
Topics: Safety Management System
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Originally published 26 November, 2020.