Do You Like To Be Benchmarked?

By Peter O'Neill

I have just completed a benchmarking excercise where we invited various IT vendors to tell us about their Channel Incentive Operations as a basis for a research report we will publish in the summer.
Many of the vendors we contacted were suprised that we do this type of research at all, but Forrester clients are getting used to this as we expand our library of reports for vendor strategists. 
Those vendors who did talk to us get, in return for their providing us highly-sensitive operating cost and headcount data, illuminating benchmark feedback so that they have an idea of how they operate compared to their peers. The feedback phase starts next week and we have 10 vendors in the benchmark so a good comparison can be made. The funniest interview was with a very high ranking executive of one vendor (so clearly, they thought it was important to talk to Forrester) who then had to tell me
every five minutes, "I am sorry, we cannot give you that information" -- a total waste of his and my time. 

In our prospecting for interviews, several vendors told us that they did not wish to participate in this excercise, which is reasonable, but nobody told us never to come back with another idea.  

We would like to more benchmarking and write it up in reports. We see the opportunity for Forrester to acquire the role as mediator within the industry for comparing notes between peers without revealing secrets to competitors. That is our idea but we’d also like your feedback. Do you agree with us? Please leave a comment for us below on this. Thanks.
 
Always keeping you informed!
Peter