Selecting the right technology partner can be a tricky process. The ultimate success of your implementation project can often rest on how well you work with your tech partner, how well they understand you and your requirements, and how well you understand them and their abilities as well.
It does not always just come down to identifying a new supplier of technology, it’s also about identifying a key contributor of your project team.
From the numerous partner selection processes we have run, we know there can be a lot at stake. So here are our top tips to help you get the best out of the process.
Top tips for an effective partner selection process
- Share your mission and cause with them –They have often specifically chosen to work in the non-profit sector and are attached to it, as you are.
- Ask them to contribute to your future state – Challenge them and ask how they can contribute to your organisation’s future. Don’t limit them to telling you how they can give you the technology functionality you’ve requested.
- Share openly and honestly with them – Share your goals and priorities for the project as well as any concerns and doubts you have. These should also be their goals for the future.
- Be open to different approaches – Invite them to give you a variety of options for how to achieve the outcomes you want
- Allow them to show you what their technology is capable of – beyond just the features you’re directly interested in at this point.
- Acknowledge their experience – and give them scope to demonstrate its value to you.
- Speak about any issues – If issues arise from due diligence checks or client references speak to the partners about them, let them give their side of any stories or situations.
- Try not to be too cynical about their pricing proposals being close to your budget – They want to give you as much as possible for the funding you have available.
Remember a partner selection process is a mutual decision and not a one-way street. Just as you will asses a partner’s fit for your organisation, they will too assess whether you are the right fit for their organisation.
For more insight into high-quality partner selection processes, join our free-to-non-profits Training Programme “How to deliver successful projects”. The whole course is based on our in-depth knowledge of change programmes and project delivery.