Questions Everyone Should Ask with a DCIM Demo


Do your research before deciding on DCIM software for your organisation. Ask thoughtful inquiries and thoroughly assess a possible DCIM vendor.


Unfortunately, not all DCIM solutions are made equal, some products that appear to be fantastic in a demo, apparently have all the bells and whistles or on paper may not meet your needs. So much of the success of a DCIM project is determined by the software and provider you select.

However, before you get to the demo step, be sure you’ve specified what you want the product to accomplish for you. Do you need to keep track of data center space? Capacity? Is there enough power and/or cabling? Know what you want to achieve. Check out this post about DCIM software for additional information.

”Can you provide a POC (Proof of Concept)?”

Though I’ll go over a series of questions, the one you should ask everyone is the one above. Your seller should be more than willing to provide you with a proof-of-concept.

If they refuse, that’s a red flag that the software is either defective or not performing at its best.

”How long has the company been in the business of DCIM?”

Check to see if a possible DCIM supplier has been in business for a long time. You don’t want to pay money to a huge provider who will abandon DCIM sooner rather than later, leaving you wondering how you got into this scenario and how to discover and transition to another solution.

Do some more digging to see if the DCIM solution is their major focus or if they mostly sell other products or devices. When it comes to hardware purchases, DCIM may be an afterthought, and they may wind up sun-setting the device, leaving you stuck.

“Do you have custom references?”

To be honest, I was undecided about including this one on the list. Why? Of course, suppliers will supply references, and they can pick and choose who you speak with). If they refuse to supply you with client references, that’s a big red flag for me, and I’d think twice about doing business with them.

“Do you have a referral with a Case Analysis?” is a better question than simply asking for customer references.

You can review it, present it to your company, and file it under their difficulties, how and why the vendor was chosen, and the advantages they received as a result of utilizing the DCIM vendor, as well as talk to them.

“Can I get a product roadmap?”

Question #2 will be aided by this question, as both are aimed to determine if a vendor is in it for the long haul.

If a DCIM vendor is constantly releasing new versions, you can be sure that the company is focused on supporting its customers and that the company is not heading somewhere. After all that money, you don’t want to be stuck looking for new software, do you?

”How long will implementation take…What resources do we need?”

I’ve previously written about clients’ horror stories with various DCIM systems, such as not being able to execute a purchased DCIM solution or having it take months (or even years) to get it up and operating! This is something you want to prevent, and a few questions during your demo can go a long way toward doing so.

Your DCIM supplier should be able to gauge the time it will take to get your DCIM software up and running, as well as the number of individuals needed on both ends. Is it going to take a few days, weeks, or months (and for how long)?

Is the vendor also ready to aid and guide you through the complete implementation stage, including data migration?   What are the best strategies for getting your DCIM up and operating quickly, and what should you ask regarding training and customer service afterward? The final thing you need is to misjudge the time and work required to implement a DCIM system.

Ensure your decision-making mechanism has a set time limit and deadline, and make your choices as promptly as possible before your side loses traction on a project.

To summarize, incorporating a DCIM solution into your data center infrastructure to aid in asset management, change management, capacity planning, cable management, and other functions is a sound investment; however, selecting the right partner to guide you through the process is even more critical.

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