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#19 Fall in love with a vendor or the data?

One of the first crucial issues to meet different business needs is to choose the right system vendor and the right technology. It is essential to understand what kind of business need should be met and the boundary conditions for IT systems, technologies and standards this sets. Often, however, the same situation should be thought of through data, leaving the perspective completely different. Almost all technologies produce and / or utilize data. The same goes for different digital systems and through it

Even if a system or service provider offers the most beautiful interface in the world, the most advanced technology, or the best cloud service, none of these will be that in a few years. The pace of development is accelerating and new technologies and requirements are constantly evolving. However, data is the one that is preserved, has a longer life cycle, and does not wear out in use. It would therefore be worthwhile to weigh the fulfillment of business needs also from the point of view of the data to be utilized and produced.

If you end up selecting technology that utilizes some less commonly used standard or even a less common communication channel, it is likely that the cost of switching in a few years will be significantly higher and more difficult to implement, so you will not be able to switch easily to another available cheaper or better solution. Do you want to lag behind in technology development?

The next thing to consider is data compatibility. If a system or technology provider stores, utilizes, and provides your data in their own data format (not in any general standard) or in ways tailored for them, it is often difficult to utilize for other needs of your business and cause unnecessary work in harmonizing and managing information. There is very little value in data if it is not possible to form large data chains or data networks that generate more value due to vendor selection.

Next, I would think about costs and data ownership. It is important to understand that when choosing a vendor, it cannot be the case that at the end of the contract you have to pay for the transfer of your own data to you or separately for making all the data accessible to other systems. In addition, when making a system purchase, I always make sure that all the data is in my ownership and is not used free of charge, for example to develop the vendor's own new IPR. In this case, I would pay for the use of a system that stores our data and someone uses it to develop their own business. That is, I would pay for someone to be allowed to grow their own business with my valuable data for free of charge.

With these arguments, I won't fall in love with individual vendors because of their solution or latest technologies, but I love the data that is available among all my other needs, in a format that is general and technologies, throughout the data life cycle.


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