A prospective client has been given bad advice and I am not sure how much effort I want to expend to convince her of that before she makes an expensive, ill-advised decision.
If you read my profile you know that I install point-of-sale, inventory management and accounting software. All my clients come to me via word of mouth referrals. I do not advertise my services, because I have found that satisfied clients make the most effective advertisements.
So, a long time client asks me to call the owner of a manufacturing plant here in Saint Elizabeth to arrange a preview of the system I installed for him. He says based on their discussions, her present set-up isn't meeting her needs and he is sure I can help.
After the presentation, she enthusiasticly agrees to have the network wiring installed, purchase the uninterrupted power supplies and arrange the funds for my fee. She is to call me once everything is lined up.
A few days later she calls to ask if we can renegotiate the payment terms from 50% down and balance upon completion, to 50% down, 25% upon completion and balance within a month. I have to admit that I was impressed! My usual experience is a quick agreement to the terms, with unlimited excuses when the project is completed. So far, I have never actually had to make good on the threat to activate a dormant virus if I don't get paid.
Believing this renegotiation was a sign of positive progress in her decision making I thought matters were going well. The next thing I know, she calls to tell me "someone" told her they could hook she up dut cheep.
Out of curiosity, I research the software that was recommended, to find that it is, indeed, less expensive than my proposal. But the customer reviews are a litany of horror stories. Multiple crashes, failure to install, glitches in the setup process and a total lack of tech support. The two features that managed to get good customer reviews are features she can't use! The on-line banking feature and the payroll module are of no value to her as they are based on North American protocols and not adaptable to Jamaican requirements.
She is taking for granted that this "someone" will fill the gaps for her. She is making a short term decision, based on price, about a situation that should involve long range, strategic planning.
Before you jump to the conclusion that there are ego issues involved, I did not write or develop the software that I recommended to her. My recommendations are based on client needs.
If she were tech-oriented, I would e-mail the links to the user forums where one customer after another has razored the product itself and the lack of support from the company that sells it. In the end, I will probably do nothing more than suggest she get information about the software from more than one source.
I am a firm believer that what is for me, can't be for you. I hope I can be gracious, humble, professional and helpful when she calls to be rescued from this mistake she is about to embrace.