Ease Of Switching (Vendor Lock-in)

With several vendors on the market, each with strengths in different areas and features, your needs today may not be the same a year from now. Although most vendors provide flexible payment options, there are several other factors to consider to ensure that you are not "locked in" with a single vendor should you choose to switch in the future:

Export Content
If you decide to change testing tools, you'll want to export existing tests into the new tool so you can evaluate new test results against your old ones. Make sure the software in question has the ability to export past content, along with what export formats are available. This is a key factor to ease of switching.

Component Reuse
Most companies will invest a lot of time creating customized scripts and API connections. Try to determine how custom tailored these may need to be to a specific platform so that if these components need to be rebuilt, you can use them with other vendors. Retooling existing API connections will reduce the cost of switching to a new provider in the future.

Contract Length / Lock-in
Choosing the right testing tool is difficult. You often won't know the limitations of a product until you have already invested a lot of time configuring and writing scripts. As a result, you'll want to look at the flexibility, and contract options that each software provider has as a key evaluation criteria.

Overall Switching
Finally, look at the total investment your company would require to move away from an existing tool and setup a new one based on the factors above.

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