In this post I try to outline a few features of what I would consider a strategic partnership with a service provider or a technology vendor. These are thoughts that I have distilled from years of experience (good and bad) with my vendor partners.
Hence this aspect of doing business cannot be overlook and not the least of these is the "cost" of doing business.
Here are a few key attributes, not necessarily in any particular order of preference.
1) the strategic partner relationship has to go beyond a transactional one to that of a more long term one
2) the strategic partner has to have skin in the game - they have to be measured with your success criteria - they can succeed only if you do
3) the strategic partner has to be willing to "share" their technology roadmap with you
4) the strategic partner has to allow you to re-shape their technology roadmap to meet your needs
5) the strategic partner relationship has to include making their test labs, test gear, professional services personnel available to you to expedite a critical path technology prototyping effort or to help test out a strategic technology concept
In summary, I would like to add that a healthy strategic vendor partnership is key to the success of not just a project or a business area (line of business) but also making IT a strategic partner for the business - especially in capturing lost business opportunity with the strategic and timely use of technology - key for this "always connected" social networking world!!
I am curious to hear from you about your experiences to this effect.
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