A recent article from CIO magazine outlined a few steps that everyone should consider in an effort to maintain a good (and effective) relationship with an IT outsourcing vendor. Why bother? Because with any vendor, you get what you give. By putting in the extra effort in your relationship, your vendor will likely perform better in return. Here are some of the recommended steps:
- You are entering a long-term relationship, so first impressions matter. When negotiating your initial contract, be reasonable, so that the relationship starts off on the right foot.
- Be honest from the beginning, so that there aren’t any unexpected surprises later. Provide an accurate asset inventory, key data on performance, etc. Your vendor will appreciate having all the necessary information up front.
- Don’t be too technical when it comes to contract interpretation; instead, face issues with a problem-solving attitude and work through issues together.
- Reward performance – easy enough, right? Clearly link financial rewards with performance to show your vendor that you value their work.
- Be a team player and foster a team-based atmosphere in every aspect of the relationship.
- Understand that when you ask a vendor to do additional work outside of the original scope, you will have to pay more. Don’t take advantage of the relationship or your vendor’s time.
- If your vendor is struggling to meet contract terms, work together to resolve the issue, if possible – it’s in the best interest of both parties to foster success.
- Pay your bills on time. Easy enough, but often overlooked.
A vendor relationship is a two-way street, so don’t overlook these simple tips!
What would you add to this list?