30 November 2005 Businesses have been warned that many software vendors are using underhand tricks to force additional licence fees from unwary buyers.
A report from analyst group Ovum warns that aggressive sales techniques are being employed by software companies. The report warns of frequently used sales tactics, including the ‘puppy dog’ approach and ‘gunmetal in the mouth’ method.
“Many software companies claim that they have become customer-centric and that they have left the world of questionable sales tactics behind them. However, these often return when vendors are under sales pressure,” says David Mitchell, software practice leader at Ovum.
Ovum uncovered evidence of companies being held to ransom over software licences once the vendor realised the user was dependent on it.
Mitchell said users should always identify an alternative if the software being used is mission critical and always be willing to call the vendors bluff. “There are often significant loopholes in software contracts, such as ambiguity in the interpretation of key terms,” he said.
The report was based on end-user experiences in Europe and North America.