Service Integration and Supplier Management

  • Published on: 28 July 2015
  • By: Angela Wyatt

There have been several recent articles charting the effects of new and disruptive technologies on the established IT architecture and strategy. Few, however, have focused on the challenges of the day to day management of such a diverse and continually shifting supplier landscape and the ever increasing complexity of the integration, delivery and management of potential IT suppliers and solutions.

Here are a few of the key factors which are adding disruption and complexity to the challenging task of service integration and supplier management:

  1. New Suppliers

There is a constantly changing array of new suppliers offering new and exciting services such as Agile development and cloud solutions (infrastructure, platform and software “as a service”). Gone are the days of only having the choice of heritage or India, as these new market entrants are challenging the established supplier landscape and destabilising the supplier market. For example, who would have thought, not so long ago, that Amazon would become an established and credible outsourced service provider?

  1. Commercial Propositions

There is also now a range of commercial propositions on the table in addition to traditional managed service contracts. New opportunities and risks are presented by commoditised pricing (pay as you go) solutions, enhanced resourced augmentation models and transformational deals which embrace the transition to new world solutions.

  1. The IT Applications Landscape

In parallel, client organisations need to balance the eternally contrasting commercial needs of the large scale Systems of Record, which require stability, low cost and strategic supplier relationships, with the new Systems of Innovation with perspectives of speed, fail fast and a throw away mentality. Agile development and DevOps also throw in further complexity as traditional “deliver milestone based” deals can no longer be effective in this environment.

  1. Incumbent Supplier Relationships

Imagine you are in the middle of a five year service contract with your incumbent supplier. How do you maintain good relationships, throughout the term, with all of this change happening in your marketplace? How do you ensure that you receive the value promised at contract signature and continue to obtain best value in an ever changing landscape? And how do you constantly drive the innovation that allows your company to get ahead of competitors that are fresh into deals with their new and exciting suppliers?

  1. Controlling IT spend

“Shadow IT” capability and spend is now growing again in the post-recessionary period. With the growth of the role of the Chief Digital Officer (CDO) comes the development of applications and platforms being managed outside the scope of the traditional IT department. It is not unusual to find 25% or more of IT spend, now outside of the IT category. This often introduces new suppliers and systems integration challenges in a quest to maintain a controlled and managed environment.

All of this is creating a very challenging environment for service integration and supplier management of IT and the key question is how can you implement, manage and evolve your supplier landscape to meet your IT requirements, amongst all of this noise and disruption.

Recognising this complexity, Quantum Plus is facilitating a Special Interest Group with a select group of client-side organisations to discuss this very subject. The aim of this private group is to discuss and develop best practice, share our experiences and lessons learned, as well as generate ideas and innovation in each of our industries.

We will cover subjects such as how you can ensure that you consistently receive the optimum service for your business going forward, through effectively:

  • Defining supplier strategies
  • Selecting the best suppliers to partner you through the complexity
  • Negotiating effective supplier arrangements
  • Using balanced scorecards to drive the optimum supplier behaviours
  • Realising the planned benefit and maintaining best value through the changing environment
  • Planning for exit or renewal (full or partial) to ensure that this remains a viable option.

For more details please contact Angela Wyatt at Quantum Plus.