OSS vendor selection dilemmas

Our dilemma is that we hate change and love it at the same time; what we really want is for things to remain the same but get better.”
Sydney J. Harris
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There are many dilemmas facing the organisation that is attempting to select a new OSS vendor, including:

  • The need to change vs the difficulties in changing [the devil you know or the devil you don’t??]
  • Future-facing vs facilitating legacy
  • Breadth of outcomes vs budgeted effort
  • Investment in a future mode whilst balancing maintenance of current state
  • Implementer/Operator-level objectives vs business-level objectives
  • Analytical vs gut-feel selection processes [Paralysis-by-analysis vs wing-and-a-prayer??]
  • Automated vs flexible solutions
  • Hierarchical data vs abstracted
  • Inclusive (of all impacted business units) vs exclusive (a small team of experts) [democracy vs dictatorship??]
  • Open tender vs a selected short-list of bidders
  • Relationship-driven vs transaction/contract-driven
  • Self-supported vs managed service
  • Speed to deliver vs attention to detail
  • Customer-facing vs internal solution
  • CAPEX-centric pricing vs OPEX-centric
  • Visual vs hot-keys
  • Vendor A vs Vendor B

I’ve barely touched the surface of the decisions facing the OSS vendor selection teams, but many people think it’s as simple as deciding on the last point on the list. If only it were that simple….

Whether each group likes it or not, an OSS vendor selection process requires collaboration between the business groups AND the technology groups, as depicted in the diagram below.

If you can handle all these dilemmas in-house, great! If you need an experienced, independent perspective, drop us a line via the contact form below.

Read the Passionate About OSS blog for more.

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