Partners or vendors

8th Aug, 2017
Read time: 2 minutes

How to make the right choice

Some people have a long-term vision for their company. They’ve identified a path to growth and expansion, incorporating customer service improvements. Yet achieving their goal of a dynamic future-proof business often requires IT investment.

Companies differ in their approach to realising strategic objectives or preparing for growth. Some firms throw money at IT vendors, hoping off-the-shelf solutions meet their needs. More enlightened companies partner with industry experts, who understand their ambitions and aspirations. And these are the firms that often become market leaders.

Bridging the communications gap

Netcall’s CTO Richard Farrell understands the importance of end-to-end customer engagement solutions. He has over twenty years of experience specifying and managing customer-facing systems.

In a recent podcast, Richard explained the key differences between partners and vendors. In essence, a vendor’s primary focus is to sell. By contrast, software partners build long-term relationships based on shared objectives. These partnerships help clients to achieve their objectives while improving efficiency and effectiveness.

Hand-in-hand beats the hard sell

A key difference between partners and vendors involves what they sell. Vendors market systems based on their own needs, like sales targets or profit margins. Partners will develop a bespoke results-focused system that meets the client’s needs.

These systems might involve adapting or patching embedded legacy systems. A solution may need a brand new IT system, designed to the client’s unique wants and needs. Or it could sit somewhere between these two extremes.

Another difference between partners and vendors involves how they sell products and services. Many vendors are little more than authorised resellers. They market generic software solutions that might not suit anyone’s precise requirements.

Vendors may struggle to predict compatibility issues or to resolve installation glitches. Worst of all, they’re unlikely to care if chosen products turn out to be ineffective or unreliable. They will already have moved onto the next sale.

A relationship of equals

A software partner takes a very different approach to the one outlined above. Partners guide you through the design, installation and management of customer facing systems. An effective partner can integrate new solutions with legacy software, including unsupported platforms.

Partners are less concerned with quick sales, and more focused on improving processes. They can train staff on how new systems operate, with ongoing customer support.

Finding your perfect partner

It’s easy to find out if a prospective software partner has a track record of success. You can check service level agreements, seeing whether they strive for 100% satisfaction. UK-based companies understand domestic laws and regulations, without language or time zone differences. And local support teams will be on hand when you need them, at any time of day or night.

Netcall has worked with some of our clients for twenty years. As a leading end-to-end customer engagement solutions provider, clients know we’re dependable. With financial stability and huge technical know-how, we’re also much more than a vendor. We become trusted software partners, working with customers to achieve their long-term objectives.

Find out more

Richard Farrell’s recent ‘partners and vendors’ podcast is available to stream here. You can also read more about Richard’s thoughts here.

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