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Digital Vendor Simplification - Innovate to win Big

Today's customer expects a uniform and relevant customer experience across channels. Nowadays it is common for a customer to traverse through multiple channels to complete a transaction. For instance, a typical banking customer starts his/ her journey at the branch, moves on to the web to initiate a process, tracks the status on mobile, accesses call-center and webchat or FAQ for query resolution, receives SMS, secures message or emails for regular services, engages in community discussion to seek meaningful advises and engages in social media to express opinion.

Rapid pace of innovation across customer acquisition and service channels means organizations are engaging with multiple IT product vendors, agencies and service vendors to deliver the outcome. While having these multiple capabilities is critical, often, these capabilities overlap and lack integration among them. They run with different SLA's, different infrastructures and contractual agreements. This poses multiple challenges like:

  • Inability to consistently engage and serve customer across channels leading to customer dis-satisfaction
  • IT and operations overhead leading to low speed to market & high cost of operation
  • High operational & contractual risk

Large organizations are increasingly looking to simplify IT & Operation vendor landscape for digital portfolio, clubbing small projects under larger benefit group to deliver as a single initiative. They are looking at large service integrators (SI's) to manage the complex vendor landscape, rather than replacing vendors.

This creates a great opportunity for IT services providers to engage at strategic levels and deliver business outcomes; however, this, at the same time poses significant challenges to build an agile digital proposition which transfers the risk and provide true cost benefit.

Traditionally, SIs have been focusing on providing differentiated frameworks, tools and accelerators and have been bundling IT and Operation services to provide benefits to a fairly stable landscape. They hardly partner or manage multiple vendors.

Rapid pace of innovation across Technology (mobile, CLOUD, Social, Analytics and Big data) and Operations (Utility based services) require a fresh look at it. Moving to much more forward looking digital service model that enable rapid partnerships, utility based services, effective risk mitigation policy, and innovative costing models is the need of the hour.

In order to create a large digital service offering, SI's should focus on: -

  • Master the art of Partnership with product vendors and marketing agencies
    • Rapid engagement with niche vendors in community, social, WCM, open-source, analytics, WCM, ecommerce, digital marketing, mobile, big data domains and establish win-win operating model is key to success. Partnership with a SaaS vendor could be very different from traditional license seller or even a digital agency which provides creative services
  • Ability to integrate product and IT services
    • Understanding of Integration points across products based on user journey and touch points using Open API's and services. Integration also helps to create a unified content, analytics and reporting platforms which can be accessed by sells, marketing, call-center, help desk etc. teams
    • Integration between distributed hosted & hosted solutions - hybrid CLOUD (3rd party) and in-house hosted solutions
  • Ability to create a integrate target operating model for multi-3rd party vendors (SLA, roadmap etc.)
    • In a multiple 3rd party contract management scenario, ability to create an integrated service SLA, Release management framework, Product or services roadmaps based on customer engagement and experience use-cases is key to success
    • A mature utility based service and pricing model helps to enable menu card based service offering, giving greater flexibility
  • Ability to manage the risk
    • Ability to manage the contractual and financial risk of 3rd party services - in the event of liquidation, SLA, data, location security or disaster recoveries
  • Ability to create domain centric solutions
    • Last but most importantly, ability to customize and create Theme centric offerings described below at rapid pace will help win big
      • Next generation call-center services
      • Win in high street through higher NB conversion
      • Increase NPS through social delight etc.
      • Digital wallet in a box

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Abhishek Chatterjee

Abhishek Chatterjee

Managing Partner

Gartner Inc.

Member since

16 Dec 2014



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This post is from a series of posts in the group:

Innovation in Financial Services

A discussion of trends in innovation management within financial institutions, and the key processes, technology and cultural shifts driving innovation.

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