Editor’s note: TechRepublic’s free-with-membership articles, including these two from this content package—“Decision Support: The goal of enterprise antispam programs” and “Protect the Network: Use our at-a-glance chart to evaluate spam product choices”—can provide a good introduction to your organization’s efforts to deal with spam. For help selecting an antispam application vendor, purchase our Vendor Selection Checklist tool for buying spam filtering software, which is part of our Spam Filter Tool Box.

To effectively evaluate vendors and make optimum purchase decisions, you need data that allows you to build a sound comparative analysis. This tool is designed to gather and organize information that will help you assess the products and services available from various vendors so that your determination is based on the facts and issues most applicable to your needs.

How to use this tool
Vendor tabs: The Vendor tabs contain fields, such as Vendor Name, Length of Time in Business, and Geographic Reach, for entering standard information for up to six vendors. In addition, the tabs list the key criteria relating to the solution you’re researching. You can rate how well each vendor meets these criteria on a scale of 1 to 5.

Criteria Ranking tab: Not all of the criteria will be equally important in your evaluation, so the Criteria Ranking tab enables you to rank the relative significance of each vendor criterion.

Comparison tab: When you’ve completed the data and rated all the vendors you’re considering, the tool will pull the information into the Comparison tab for a side-by-side look at how they stack up. The tool will also factor in the criteria ranking you provided and return a weighted average that shows the overall rating of each vendor based on your assessment of how well it meets each criterion and how you ranked the criterion.

To help you make your best decision when selecting antispam products, check out our Spam Filter Tool Box, where you can download the Spam Filtering Software Pack.