In a time when it’s tough to make a buck in general, and lots of great software is free or almost free, we know businesses wrestle with the question of whether a particular software tool is worth the cost. One reason we know this is because we wrestle with the question all the time on our own software purchases. So we know customers are going to buy ProtoShare only if they are convinced that ProtoShare is worth the cost.
In general, ProtoShare Professional costs about $50 per month per Editor, and ProtoShare’s Business Edition costs about $60 per month per Editor. Reviewers are generally included in both cases. (By the way, we’re running a special right now on ProtoShare Professional that takes the cost down to as low as $30 per month per Editor, but the sale ends March 31, so you’d better hurry.)
So, is ProtoShare worth it?
The real answer is that it’s only worth it if ProtoShare helps you make or save significantly more money than it costs. And, obviously, we agree with our many customers that it does.
ProtoShare does two things: it allows you to create interactive prototypes of web software and it lets you share these prototypes with key stakeholders to get feedback and make decisions, so you build the right software the first time. ProtoShare is designed to provide one repository for all project comments and decisions, so there is an easily accessible record of the decisions that were made and why they were made.
Our customers find that ProtoShare adds value in a number of ways. Use of ProtoShare helps our customers get through the “discovery” phase and define the requirements of a project faster. Using ProtoShare to track processes, feedback and decisions prevents lost discussions, keeps everyone in the loop, and ends the “re-litigation” of decisions. Collaborative prototyping with ProtoShare often produces a better product by encouraging innovation through brainstorming and rapidly exploring multiple approaches and ideas. ProtoShare also helps our customers better meet their clients’ and stakeholders’ needs by iteratively refining their products to their simplest and most usable forms. What are better products worth? For many of our customers, these “soft benefits” are enough to convince them that ProtoShare is worth the cost.
The Cost of Re-work & the Savings with ProtoShare
Thanks to the legwork of Gartner and Forrester Research, we also have some hard data to back up ProtoShare’s value. Research consistently shows that the cost of re-work represents 30 percent of the cost of the average software development project. The total cost of many software development projects is north of $100,000, so the “re-work tax” is often over $30,000 per project.
Our customers have found that use of ProtoShare results in an average of 70 percent less re-work because their key stakeholders can see and interact with a functioning prototype prior to the build. This interaction is much more effective than written requirements documents or static wireframes at eliciting stakeholder feedback and decisions. And since the discussions and decisions take place within ProtoShare, customers have a permanent record of what was decided and why.
Everyone’s business is different. Yours may handle many projects in a year, or only a few. Your projects may be larger than average or smaller than average. The value of ProtoShare to your business will to some extent depend on these variables.
To help you decide if ProtoShare is worth the money it costs, here’s what we call the ProtoShare Re-Work Savings Calculator. The calculator focuses only on the benefit of reduction of re-work that ProtoShare provides, without even considering the additional soft benefits described above. Plug in your own numbers and decide for yourself if ProtoShare is worth the cost.
If you’re like many of our customers, the answer will be an emphatic yes.