Market Review

The purpose is to move to a position where we have two or three options for a more detailed evaluation.
Plan Phase Hold Kick Off Meeting RFI Produce Final Requirements
Produce Final Scope Produce Request Document Request Responses Produce Checklist for Evaluation
Evaluate Vendors and Produce Shortlist Produce Market Review Report Plan next phase Solution Evaluation Gate



Ongoing Project Management
  • Preliminary Requirements Report
  • Plan for Market Review Phase
  • Market Review Report
    • Functional Decomposition
    • Data Model
    • Business Process Model
    • Final Scope
  • Short list from RFI (Optional).
  • Short list for Solution Evaluation Phase

This phase timing will be dependant on whether the optional RFI process is undertaken. Typically you can allow something less than a week to put a requirement together, two weeks for the vendor to respond, and a week for evaluation. This means if the RFI is included, it will take 3 1/2 to 4 weeks for this process.

The other work in the project will probably take 6 to 8 weeks.

  • Project Manager
  • Sponsor
  • Business Analyst
  • Business Representatives
  • Technical Experts (where required)
  • Vendors
  • Consultant organisation (optional to carry out RFI)

The things to consider are:

  • How well do we know the market for potential solutions?
  • How many vendors could offer potentially successful solutions?

If the answer to both is "many" then you probably want to do some culling early through an RFI. This will help you focus on the best solutions. If the answer is "not many" you may be able to move quickly through this phase or skip it completely.

If you are undertaking an RFI, there is enough information to draw up a requirements document and request responses. If moving to an RFP/RFQ/RFT you will need to do some more gathering of requirements. As with preliminary requirements, the depth needs to be controlled. We are not building a system. We are purchasing a system so it will deliver most of what we require.

The responses will probably include a demonstration of the product. That needs to be carefully controlled. The vendor obviously want to show you things that may not be the same as what you want to see. Considerable effort in planning this demonstration will save considerable time and confusion.

There needs to be some checklist for the evaluation of vendors or you risk the situation arising where people are accepted or rejected on irrelevant or less important criteria. The checklist can be developed while the vendor is preparing their response.

The focus is not so much on 'proving' the solution at this stage. It is on understanding how it can potentially fit your organisation. The 'proving' occurs in the Solution Evaluation phase.

Schedule Gantt Chart A draft Microsoft Project plan for the phase. It lists activities and elapsed timeframes. Times are very approximate and may be significantly shorter or longer.
Vendor Tricks White paper on some of the techniques used by vendors during the purchase process.
Software Purchase Process A white paper on how to manage the Vendor during a purchase cycle

Return to the top