Monday, 4 July 2011

Why vendor favouritism is a good thing

As a technology solutions provider I often come across clients who are against vendor favouritism - especially when it comes to Content Management Systems. In this camp, technology favouritism is seen as being biased at the expense of customers' commercial and operational needs.My view is that when it comes to building and delivering complex technology projects, vendor favouritism is essential.

And, dear potential customer, this is why:

Your commercial agreement is based on a solid foundation

Having previous experience building applications on a given platform and having successful reference sites means that the commercial structure is hinged upon on realistic estimates and sensible project plans.

Your delivery team can deliver

Learning a new platform, making the inevitable first mistakes, learning from them and then building best practices is something that takes months, if not years, to get right. If a supplier has a preferred vendor then they probably have been through this process already. If they haven't, your project could end up footing the bill.

You get the benefit of good relationships

A strong relationship with a vendor means benefits on all levels - from better licensing deals to faster support to early insights into the vendor roadmap.

You get things for free

In reality modules, components or utilities which will have been developed previously - and which are not licences to someone else, obviously - will get thrown into the mix. These small things can make a big difference to the overall success of the project.

Your project has the best chance at life

Making the wrong technology choices that end up crippling your delivery team or force them to outsource the build is the best way to lay noble plans to a premature rest.

As with everything there are always exceptions to the rule; but more often than not enthusiasm for a particular vendor or platform is based on professional experience and expertise rather than a naive giddiness over sexy packaging.

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