When your organization needs a PIM system, the next step is to find a solution that best suits your organization and situation.
What To Look For When Choosing A PIM System
There are several factors that are important when choosing a PIM system. When you are looking for a PIM system, it is important to take the points below into account.
- Functionalities: think in advance what you want to achieve with a PIM system and what important functionalities a PIM must contain for this.
- Flexibility and supplier resources: When you are looking for a PIM system, there are several suppliers you can choose from. Because a PIM system is a complex product that affects your entire business, it is important to choose a supplier who can and is also prepared to respond to your wishes and requirements.
- Scalability: when you are going to process more product information or want to link more channels to your PIM system, you ideally want a PIM system that is flexible and expandable. Therefore, when choosing a PIM, pay attention to the possible scalability.
- Ensuring data quality: the quality of data is extremely important. Some PIM systems have data validation or data quality reports. SRC-PIM is the only PIM system in the Netherlands to have real-time validations based on various standards. Data can only be published to data pools or external channels when data meets the set requirements.
- GS1 and other data sources: Because GS1 is the most widely used data standard in the Netherlands, it is advisable to select a solution that is compliant with GS1. In the Netherlands, the food and drugstore, do-it-yourself, garden and animal, healthcare and fashion sectors use the GS1 data standard. Although the use of GS1 is not mandatory, there is a good chance that you have to process your product information according to the GS1 standard and publish it to a GS1 data pool when you exchange data with companies in these sectors. In some cases, large retailers may not do business with suppliers who do not process product information according to the GS1 data standard.
How Do You Determine Which PIM System Best Suits Your Organization?
Choosing a PIM system is not easy. With the step-by-step plan below, you will make the right choice for your organization.
Step 1: Put Together a Team
A PIM system affects the entire organization. Therefore, involve a team with all stakeholders in the selection process. Make sure that the IT department is at least involved in the technical knowledge.
Step 2: Make A MoSCow List Before You Talk To Suppliers
Prepare a list of requirements that a PIM system must meet before talking to suppliers of PIM systems. The best way to create such a list is via the MoSCoW method: Must have, Should have, Could have, and Would have.
If a ‘Must have’ on your list cannot be realized by a PIM system, this solution is not an option for your organization.
Step 3: Look Beyond Technical And Functional Properties
There are several suppliers that supply a PIM system. Technical and functional properties are of course important, but you can also take other factors into account in the selection process. Questions you can ask are: What is the reputation of the supplier? Does the PIM system have good references? What is the pricing model?
Step 4: Make A Shortlist And Schedule A Demo
Compile a shortlist of PIM systems based on your MoSCoW list. Limit yourself to a maximum of five suppliers. Try to schedule a demo with these suppliers. When you send a questionnaire in which suppliers have to indicate whether their PIM system supports certain functionalities, chances are that most suppliers will respond positively to this. A demo not only gives you more insight into the PIM system. You can immediately see whether certain functionalities are present and what their ease of use is. During a demo, do not stare blindly at the user interface but, above all, test the operation and ask carefully about the functionalities you want.
Step 5: Make A Ranking
All team members must rate all suppliers / PIM systems for the criteria you set in steps 2 and 3. Keep this simple – give the worst scoring supplier a ‘1’ and the best a ‘3’. Filter suppliers from your list who cannot supply a must-have.