Guest blog from Interoute CTO Matthew Finnie: R.I.P. RFP

Guest blog from Interoute CTO Matthew Finnie: R.I.P. RFP

The request for price/procurement/purchase or some other ‘P’ is the bane of many IT
directors and suppliers. To date it has been a necessary stick, interrogation tool and reference to try and cut through the rhetoric, dreams and hyperbole that now surrounds any B2B purchase. But its flaw is that it assumes that those capable of delivering the best RFP response are those who will also deliver the best ICT Solution. The question is how many times does this process actually result in the best technology, solution or provider? What’s worse is that an entire industry of advisors, consultants and practices has sprouted up to try and guide this process. These folk in the middle rarely have to live with the
consequences of their advice but always ensure they get their pound of flesh for the advice they give.

That was until now. The arrival of cloud computing has introduced a rather under
reported benefit, the ability to “try before you buy”. Rather than trust the polished marketing and sales RFP responses or rely on expensive army of consultants, you can now give it a whirl first and see if it “does what it says on the tin”, limiting your time, resource, cost and risk of finding out what’s right for your business.

At Interoute we’d love it if people bought from us because they were impressed by the size of our network and our charm and flexibility. But the reality is they buy because our solutions work. How do they know this? Because with the Interoute Virtual Data Centre they can try it, kick it, bash it, and stress it, along with us sometimes, to see if the service works. When it does great, they know what they are getting into, they understand the scope and generally we have a much healthier relationship as a result.

With the launch of the Interoute CloudStore, we have extended the idea not just for our Virtual Data Centre but also across our communications, storage and networking platforms. Now you can really go to town. You can build an entire integrated platform from multi-site backup, disaster recovery, active directory deployment right up to a complete
endpoint agnostic unified communication platform.

While we are really excited, I know many will defend the whole RFP process talking about
business process optimisation, business transformation and another flurry of largely pseudo scientific terms. While there is a thread of truth in this, most people at the sharp end of an IT program will recognise the frustration and lack of focus on the outcome so long as it’s a beautiful project. Knowing what you are going to get makes it so much easier to establish value, impact on the organisation and generally how the whole thing will turn out. Better still, with this model you always have the option to change your mind and restructure your needs, expand and constrain capacity-capability.

Again don’t take my word for it. Take it for spin and let me know what you think.

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