or LinkedIn here uk.linkedin.com/pub/tony-smith-bsc-hons-acih/a/979/351/
It's great to have an ICT supplier you can rely on with a large portfolio of software, of use to you. Suppliers do have a habit these days of buying up others, and many are clearly trying hard to integrate products into more joined up solutions.
For the buyer it can sometimes be hard to know where the various components have come from, particularly as they will be inevitably badged as coming from the same supplier. Tellingly, my word processor just underlined 'badged' in red and suggested 'bodged' instead. In some cases that can be closer to the truth.
I was chatting with a client I have been working for some time with and they were bemoaning buying a cloud based solution from a provider, that also is one of their key ones. Sales staff made the right noises that applications would work together, probably without anyone watching the demo, pursuing written clarifications too vigorously. As a result, for many years they inefficiently copy & paste from one application to another, with no interface to speak of.
So how do we combat this? The buyer should always ask where the various modules come from, even if badged as though from the same source. Ask who owns the IP (Intellectual Property) and if its white labelled from that source, as many applications can be. If the look and feel is different, that is the first clue.
When thinking about interfaces, ask how many clients, very similar to yourselves, have already successfully interfaced and are live. These last two parts are crucial. Don't be put off by that tired old line 'well, we haven't found anything yet we cannot interface to'. There's always a first time and it could be with you!
Ask firmly that you want to obtain people to contact and visit to the site if felt necessary. Will they use the components like you, also how much of them are they using. Simple questions, but ones that will save you a whole pile of grief in the future. If the contacts are not forthcoming, decide if this is a deal breaker, or maybe you are happy to consider being a pioneer, possibly at a reduced cost to recompense you for increased risks.
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Related Post: Is Bigdata the solution for #ukHousing ?
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Cream - Badge.
(c) Tony Smith, Acutance Consulting www.acutanceconsulting.co.uk 07854-655009
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