Over the past decade, delivery center visits — or client site visits — have been a great sales tool for IT services vendors. I believe that new client requirements and changing client/vendor engagement models will increasingly push vendors to transform their client site visit processes. These visits need to focus much more on a customized and intimate client experience, as opposed to just showcasing technological capabilities.
Vendors must move away from presenting delivery capability showcases and instead send three strong messages to their clients and prospects around innovation, experience, and flexibility that evoke a more customized and intimate relationship. Showcasing innovation should be at the heart of the site visit process, as it resonates with what clients believe will give them a significant competitive advantage. I believe that highlighting experience, flexibility, and strong innovation capabilities throughout the visit process creates the best foundation for an effective site visit.
I recently had the chance to interact with Uniken, a technology firm that specializes in developing products in the field of security, computing, and communications. I was impressed to experience some of their innovations around “Net banking solutions.” With its TranSafe solution (a secure private platform on the Internet), I believe that Uniken proposes an innovative approach to Net banking. Uniken has researched, developed, and commercialized this technology at its Innovation Centre in Pune, India. Innovations like these are what today’s clients want to see when they visit vendors’ R&D/delivery centers. I see three areas where IT services vendors need to innovate today:
I’ve spent the past two days with about 2,000 new friends. Polycom’s annual sales conference provided a drumbeat of messages about what is to come from the vendor. As Kate Hutchison, Polycom’s chief marketing officer, talked about the future, you could feel the certainty of an organization that has set its mind to a task. I sensed a certain swagger from everyone with whom I interacted that echoed Kate’s desire to see the company push the limits of human collaboration at work. CEO Andy Miller left no doubt that the company was committed, describing the unalterable market forces that have shaped his vision for the company and letting everyone in the room know that he intended to assemble a rogue’s gallery of industry goliaths to drive Polycom forward — inviting Dreamworks, HP, IBM, and Microsoft to contribute to his keynote address to hammer home this point. Sue Hayden, VP of global alliances and programs, has been charged with making this so — and, based on my conversations with her about companies from Apple to Motorola to Siemens, she will.
Polycom is committed to five things moving forward: being easier to work with, being easier to use, being more innovative, assembling more complete business solutions, and pursuing the business models their customers prefer. The values that Polycom put forth include:
Being easier to do business with. Polycom is simplifying the process for buyers — working to make ordering products and services easier. There is now a tool for systems managers to enable zero-touch configuration. The company’s commitment to channels and end users was on display all week.