image-vendor-man-womanNoted French anthropologist Claude Levi Strauss said, “The wise man doesn’t give the right answers, he poses the right questions.”

Navigating the terrain in the world of communications and information technology is not easy.  Smart business executives leverage Vendor Management services from outside experts to help.  That expert asks the key questions of the organization and based on those answers, recommends the best way forward in terms of services/providers.  At IT Radix, we do this all the time.  Examples of such questions recently posed to us in such a role include:

  • What level of Internet speed must my organization have to successfully and productively operate from the Cloud? Who is the best provider of that?
  • Are the terms and conditions listed in this proposal from this data center in line with my business needs? Should I look elsewhere?
  • Does the new office we acquired have adequate network cabling to accommodate our data needs? If I have to invest in upgrading, who should do it?
  • What provider of VoIP phone services offers the best flexibility as my business grows without locking me in a long-term contract?
  • Does it matter what web technology my website is built with for future changes and enhancements? What happens if I want to move my website?

The IT Radix approach to a vendor management project starts with “wise” questions first, so we understand clients’ needs both today and into the future.  Next, we scrutinize the market to bring together vendor options for the client and help them choose the best fit.  However, that is really only half the job.

Where the rubber meets the road is managing vendor performance—ensuring that the vendor provides the goods and services on time, on or below budget.  And through that process, we continue to be “wise” and ask a lot of questions of the vendor, challenging them to ensure goals are achieved.  The key to our giving the best vendor management services is communication—both ways.  We make no assumptions that the vendor truly understands the needs of our client, so we clarify that constantly.  Also, we keep the client informed while also keeping the client away from the needless minutiae of projects.

If you understand the value of a general contractor when it comes to building and remodeling projects, then you understand the value of IT vendor management.  At IT Radix, we are happy to help in this capacity.  Bringing us in would be a wise move!

First published in our May 2016 IT Radix Resource newsletter

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