We wrote an article for the ITAM Review back in August, which generated some interesting conversations with customers and colleagues alike. You can read the whole thing here, but we wanted to summarise it for those short of time below.
It’s an old adage that no one ever got sacked for buying IBM, but it still holds true today.
The thrust of the article was that big name IT vendors seem to be pulling the wool over business buyers’ eyes in three key areas:
- Expensive equals a superior service
- Bigger equals more innovative
- More complex equals better
Let’s tackle these in order. In reality, more expensive just means more expensive. Big vendors are answerable to their shareholders and consequently it’s the sponsorship deals and fancy offices that have been paid for by the customer.
With a smaller supplier, companies are actually likely to get better service level agreements, because every customer matters.
In large organisations innovation is often stifled: it can be easier to promote ‘tried and tested’ solutions internally and externally, and levels of bureaucracy can stop the best ideas getting through.
Unnecessary over-complication simply adds to the price tag. Indeed, with Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) in place to form a framework to help implementation, most organisations don’t then need a big strategic plan as well. Smaller vendors use ITIL very successfully, and customers often come to such vendors with similar problems, which require a simple, standard approach.
Choosing a smaller more flexible player over a cumbersome, expensive mega-vendor may not be the right choice for everyone. But as the UK faces some tough choices on where to cut budgets, 2011 should be the year to re-examine your options.
So what do you think? Do you agree or have you had a different experience? Have you got a New Year’s Resolution to change suppliers?
We’re keen to hear your thoughts, so let us know!