When to declare your vendor independence

By Steve Weissman posted 07-03-2012 09:26


Tomorrow being the Fourth of July, I thought it would be worth taking a moment to remind managers and customer organizations everywhere that it is OK to change your technology providers when your current ones seem no longer able to meet your needs. Though this may sound obvious, it is a question that bubbles up with surprising regularity during my consulting and training engagements.

In particular, audience and students alike often report an organizational undercurrent that tells them they ought to stay with the vendor they have been working with rather than risk disruption by virtue of changing partners. It's very much a “devil you know” kind of mindset, and while it is true that casually jumping from one provider to another is not a recommended practice because of the investment in time, dollars, and skill sets that generally have been made, there are times when a move is a logical course of action:

- When your vendor has gone out of business and you need an upgrade

- When the cost of maintaining your old solution begins to approach the cost of acquiring a new one

- When your vendor has been acquired and you no longer receive the attention you once did

- When you have been acquired and your new corporate parent requires a change be made

This being the case, I therefore humbly submit the following as an organizational Declaration of Independence, modified from the original in order to make the point. Happy holiday, everyone!

When in the Course of business events it becomes necessary for an organization to dissolve the financial bands which have connected it with another and to assume among the powers of the market, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Economics entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of commercial partnership requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all customers are created equal, that they are endowed by their Managers with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Price, Service, and the pursuit of Efficiency. — That to secure these rights, Partnerships are instituted among Organizations, deriving their just powers from the consent of the customers, — That whenever any Form of Partnership becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the Organization to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Partnership, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Value and Satisfaction.

#InformationGovernance #vendor #ElectronicRecordsManagement #selection
1 comment


07-18-2012 12:09

Steve, Nice points. I appreciate your 'Logical' approach. It's unfortunate when an organiztion moves to a new tool suite because of reasons like:
~ We're sick of it
~ Search is Broken
~ No one knows where anything is
~ "I like" this other tool
These and other subjective reasons are often the foundation built upon to formulate a justificatoin of a new system...