As I mentioned a few weeks ago, I spent the day at SITS.  I had some really interesting conversations  and some truly frightening ones, so beware.  We’re also working on bringing some guest posters to the Siamang blog soon.

We spoke to a small company that has lots of small customers and one quite large one.  Whilst discussing this I asked how they dealt with the data their clients provided.  Did they test it and were they sure that the customer really knew what was being asked.  At this point they became very defensive and my jaw dropped.  They didn’t seem to do any testing or validation of any kind.  Having worked with customers similar to theirs in the past, I can foresee issues ahead.  On tools that are data driven, not testing the data is dangerous and negligent.  We’ve written previous posts on the importance of data in ITSM systems that we recommend you check out.

I spoke to another smaller company that told me about one technology that we are very familiar with here at Siamang was all about software development.  I gave him a quizzical look and moved on very quickly.  The tool in question is best modified with data and process flows and customisation is and should be a last resort.

A third could have a system up and running for free in 30 days.  Wow!  or perhaps not.  I can have an empty box up and running in several hours.  Would the system stood up in 30 days meet your objectives?  How long do you think it might take for you to understand how your business and your business processes actually work? How much would it cost to change something?  Have you the customer already invested a large amount of your time and resource?  Probably.  People are reluctant to stop projects or change direction once an investment has been made.

Another, and my final story from the day, told me that they do all of the testing for their client.  As a supplier that must seem like a very good position to be in.  Well, maybe in the short term or with a very undemanding client.  Do you think they signed the acceptance document on their behalf too?

Have you come across situations like this?  Tell us about them using the links below.  I’m going to share some more positive learnings next week.

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