Working for a reseller, I’m exposed to a lot of technology. Don’t get me wrong, as CTO of a hospital, I was exposed to a lot of technology too. But not to the extent I am now. Over the past few years, I’ve been introduced to some technology that has made me say “I wish I knew this about this before, it would have made my job less stressful”. I would have made some very different decisions if I had only had the opportunity.
There are so many manufacturers out there and you know all the big players. You see them weekly. But is that all you are seeing? These larger technology firms already have their footprint in your environment so they can get your attention easier. There’s nothing wrong with having them, they all provide value. What about the technology companies that you aren’t seeing? There are some smaller manufacturers that can bring as much value as the larger ones and can bring some innovative technology with them.
One of the things that really stands out about some of these smaller manufacturers is their approach. They too really want your business but it’s not about them being successful – it’s about how successful you can be with their solution. When I say successful, I don’t just mean from a technical perspective. There are perks and benefits outside of the technology. Many times, they offer free training for your staff or discounts on annual maintenance. They may use you as a case study or success story highlighting your success. They really take the time to get to know your environment. You are a much bigger fish to them.
Heed my advice, some of these smaller manufacturers are worth looking at. If your business partner (reseller) is truly engaged with you and is a trusted partner, listen to them. They will be there through the whole process – introduction, proof-of-concept, configuration, order, post order and beyond. If they are making the suggestion to look at something different, they have good reason.
If you are a CIO, CTO, director, or manager, I plead you to be different. Schedule some time to at least listen to your business partner and get educated on all of these newer technologies and smaller companies. It could be the best thing you ever did for your business and your career.
~Andrew Trogden, CTO