Just Don't (4 of ?) - Install More Than the Customer Wants

Over the last few weeks I’ve been involved with arranging evaluations and purchasing of a number of ‘enterprise’ products. Among the rogues gallery have been IBM (OK but nothing special considering they had near a dozen people in the room), Oracle (Actually very good) and my new favourite, Business Objects (BO), providers of Crystal Reports.

The day started off quite nicely, the BO technical gent came in and did an install of the product we were evaluating on our test server with me watching over his shoulder. The install was hitch free and took maybe an hour. He then took me through some of the administration features (on the OS level) including the logging and auditing support.

He then went to converse with the lady who will be doing the actual report writing, during the course of the afternoon he made a number of subtle hints as to the other powerful Crystal addons we might like to spend money one. One of these caught my attention, logging and auditing, I innocently asked what this got me beyond what I’d already seen; and then I was told what I’d already seen was the optional software. Which we had no intension of buying at the start of the day but that’d been installed for us just in case.

Never install more than people ask for in an evaluation, it leads to mismanaged expectations and distrust of the vendor.