In a time of increasing margin compression and heightened consumer expectations, outsourcing your tech needs to a software company can accelerate digital transformation to increase business growth and profitability.
But, in the world of software as a service (SaaS), a lot of organizations deliver great software. Far fewer deliver great service.
In the past, software vendors focused on installing and deploying applications for customers.
Today, you need a company that can be more than a vendor. You need a company that understands the unique challenges facing your industry. You need a company that can help you map out your current and future needs, implement, adopt and continually educate you and your users to maximize your investment. In short, you need a partner.
Use these four questions to eliminate the chaos that comes from choosing the wrong technology vendor and find the perfect partner for you and your relationship managers.
- Who are your customers?
Checking a company's references is critical to finding a reliable technology partner. Most technology partners will likely point you to some case studies and/or testimonials from their customers. Although these help, they’re not enough.
Ask to talk to existing customers to understand how they are using the solution and what they like and dislike, so that you get the whole, unbiased picture.
- How do you look at the future?
Banking and lending are undergoing an unprecedented time of innovation and disruption. One of the big reasons to outsource a solution is that, by going with an expert, you secure your access to cutting-edge technology.
What’s better than a partner? An innovation partner.
When potential partners answer this question, look to understand:
- Their innovation cycle.
- Their release schedule.
- Their plans for the next six months, year or even five years.
- Your influence on the product roadmap.
- How do you make it easy for our end users?
A lot of traditional technology systems fail because they focus more on the what and less on the why or how.
At Total Expert, our Chief Customer Officer, Sue Woodard, likens this to showing someone how to get in and out of a car without showing them how to drive it. The last thing you need is to burden your marketing and sales teams with another tool. Another set of processes. Another set of buttons to push.
When talking to a technology partner, ask them how they will make life easier for you and your end users.
- What happens after implementation?
Be clear on what happens in the weeks, months and even years after you go live and onboarding is finished.
A technology vendor provides responsive support to provide bug fixes as issues arise.
A technology partner provides proactive support to educate you and work with you to maximize your investment, so you can address challenges before they ever turn into issues. Your technology partner should offer you custom, ongoing training opportunities, an online resource library and access to your Customer Success team at least six days a week.
From Technical Promise to Genuine Achievement
Technology isn’t magic. Neither are relationships. They both take hard work. In giving careful consideration to the questions raised in this post, you should be able to easily differentiate simple technology vendor from veritable partner, so you can successfully drive digital transformation in your organization.
Discover the other leading factors that led Intercoastal Mortgage to adopt the Total Expert Marketing Operating System™ (MOS) or read:
- Empower Loan Officers to Drive Your Digital-First Organization (A guest post by Trey Rigdon)
- Three Bankable Strategies to Become a High-Performance Originator (A guest post by Todd Duncan)
- Getting the Most Out of Your Technology Stack – Fast