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Why is MRDCL more expensive than many other tabulation software packages?


If you are considering purchasing MRDCL, one of the questions you are likely to ask yourself is why is MRDCL more expensive than many other tabulation software packages and is it worth the expenditure? The honest and simple answer to that question, in my opinion, is that it depends what your goals are and what skills you have or plan to have.



What this article will explore

This article will explore many important questions. Firstly, it will look at why MRDCL is expensive and then try to help you decide whether it really is expensive. Finally, the article will try to help you decide whether a more expensive product like MRDCL is good value or whether a cheaper alternative will be a better buy.


Why is MRDCL expensive?

When you can buy useful apps on your phone for $1.99 or less, can find survey software that is free and find alternative tabulation software that is a few hundred dollars, you would be crazy not to ask yourself whether spending more on MRDCL is a good decision. The main reason that MRDCL is more expensive than most other products in its field is scarcity. Let me explain.


Why does scarcity matter?

By scarcity, I do not mean that MRDC Software realises that it can abuse its position of having the most powerful tabulation software in the industry and, therefore, charge premium prices. No. What I mean is that there is a scarcity of customers who either need MRDCL or have the skills to utilise it. It means that there is a limit to the number of customers that can benefit from such a sophisticated software product. It’s not like Excel or Google Sheets where there is ‘something for everyone’. The question, therefore, becomes “would MRDCL benefit me?”, which I will try to answer later in this article.


Can’t anyone use MRDCL?

The simple truth is that MRDCL requires application, skill and regular use to be of advantage to you. As someone with absolutely no DIY skills, I could be given the biggest and best equipped toolbox in the world, but it would not mean that I can suddenly build an extension to my home. If all I can use effectively is a screwdriver and a hammer, there is a limit to what I can achieve.


Why can’t anyone use MRDCL?

MRDCL is a scripting language that takes time to become proficient in using. Effective users usually need to spend a third or more of their working time using MRDCL to become highly efficient. And, that’s where MRDCL offers a real advantage. Someone who knows how to use the MRDCL tools may be able to complete a task in as little as 10% of the time that someone who is using a lesser product. It can be even more extreme than that. We have known customers that handled tracking studies in MRDCL in about 2% of the time (yes, 98% less time) than they did in an alternative product simply because MRDCL has the right tools.


But that still doesn’t fully explain expensive, does it?

Actually, it does explain why MRDCL is more expensive and it’s all about what goes with the actual software licence that MRDCL users buy. To go back to my screwdriver and hammer example, although these are limited tools and I am a novice at DIY, I fully understand how to use a screwdriver and a hammer. I don’t need any help. When you use MRDCL, you are likely to need induction training, support, videos teaching how to cover particularly topics and have expertise at hand. And, that’s what MRDC Software supplies – and, we think, supplies very well. There’s a blog article that provides more detail, click here to read this article.


Productivity focused software needs expert tools

Added to this support, MRDCL needs to keep pushing at improving productivity and finding new ways to make users more effective. It is important for MRDCL users to keep getting better tools so that they can become more productive. This means that we need to invest heavily in software development to provide that advantage. If you or your team are using simpler software or only have simple requirements, it probably doesn’t matter how productive the staff are.


Should I avoid expensive software?

Now, much of what I have said may make you think that you should avoid expensive software and that it is better to soldier on with software that is inefficient or limited. I never believe in buying more than you need. If what you have does an effective job for you, that’s fine, but there are some traps that it is easy to fall into.


Is your work easy but there is a lot of it

I have seen some potential clients stick with less efficient software because it is too scary to move to something that is more difficult to use. It is right to be cautious, of course, but there are ways in MRDCL to build templates so that usage is a lot easier. I am particularly thinking of potential customers who do easy tabulations but have high volumes. It’s easy to say that another software package is cheaper and does what you need, but, if it takes even four times longer to produce, this comes at a cost in terms of labour and possibly in terms of business when you can’t deliver as fast as your client would like. This is a classic case of ‘not biting the bullet’ and saving money by spending money.


The more committed you are, the more you will get back

Like a lot of leisure pursuits, one thing you will find about MRDCL is that the more you put in, the more you will get back. MRDCL allows you to build efficient systems to process your work like no other tabulation software package. Even the more expensive ones, which we often consider over-priced, leave you to program your own solutions rather than having off the shelf solutions that can automate or semi-automate most tabulations that you want. There is a big difference between software that does everything and software than can be programmed to do anything. You need to cautious of this flaw in products like Confirmit and Ruby.


Exponential labour costs are a reality

One thing that business owners sometimes do not understand is that software users are not like many other staff. Let’s take a market research executive. It is likely or, at least possible that one research executive can handle the same task in, say, 50% of the time that another research executive will take. If the two research executives are earning the same salary, the more efficient one is operating at 50% of the cost of the other (plus their fixed costs, of course). The same is true of two MRDCL users. Where an exponential difference can exist is in the software. One product might take 50 times longer to achieve what MRDCL can do. That might be a bit extreme and perhaps relate to a complex tracking study or something like that, but it’s a serious difference and a factor of five times or ten times is not uncommon. The licence fee for MRDCL then becomes almost irrelevant in such cases.


Premium vs. non-premium products

Finally, we consider MRDCL to be a premium product. We consider it to be the most productivity-focused product for tabulations in market research. In our view, selling a premium product means that you should get a premium service with all the back up you need to ensure that you are operating as close to 100% efficiency as you can.


If none of this resonates with you…..

If the above doesn’t resonate with you, MRDCL is probably not the right product for you. We are fully aware that MRDCL is not the right product for everyone. However, if you have complex tables, large volumes of tables, manage tracking studies, want to automate your analysis and reporting or find that your data processing costs are high, MRDCL is likely to be right for you.


So, is MRDCL expensive?

Finally, the real question. What this article has tried to convey is that in the right hands and with the right type of work, MRDCL can save you money and pay for itself. However, it takes a commitment. We also appreciate that you need to trust us to be sure that your investment is right. That can be best achieved by asking direct questions and finding our answers credible. An important part of the equation will be what we offer when we supply a licence to use MRDCL – we hope to have covered that in this blog article 'Market research software – what do you get from a licence or subscription?', but if you have more questions, we will be pleased to answer them. So, do you think MRDCL is right for you? Ask us some questions now to find out.


Contact our product consultant, charlotte.hearn@mrdcsoftware.com, for more information.


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Phil Hearn
Author: Phil Hearn - Date posted: 2 May 2019
Category: data-analysis - Tags: MRDCL, tabulations, crosstabs, software

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