Our client, an international consumer goods business, is home to many leading, trusted brands and operates in markets around the world. Their long term IT services agreement with a leading Tier 1 service provider, was due for renewal, with each service tower having subtly different end dates and notice periods. As a consequence of our initial strategy review, the client was fully supportive of moving away from 'the monolithic contract' and instead finding 3 class leading, best-fit partners for Security Operations, Compute and End User Computing and Service Management services. The client’s strong desire was to find specialist / niche organisations that would be a good cultural and operational fit, integrated by a specialist Service Integrator.
During the previous strategy engagement, our client asked us a simple question: “are we mad”? The reality was “no” and that the logic of splitting an 8 year old, underperforming contract into 3 new “best fit” solutions was a sound approach. However, they were also acutely aware of the effort, cost, risk and potential timescales, which resulted in us being asked to run an agile, collaborative sourcing programme. There was anxiety associated with moving from an industry recognised supplier who had operated the majority of the client’s global IT services for 8 years, which was exacerbated by the scale and availability of the client team plus a wide range of global, strategic projects that were already underway.
Our big question to solve was: “How do you ensure when splitting one contract and going to market to seek 3 new partners, you do not duplicate or omit key requirements, drive service improvement, reduce risk and achieve a better commercial position? Put another way, how do you run fast and juggle the client's “crown jewels” simultaneously?
What we did
Our client knew that we are known for “rolling our sleeves up and doing” rather than simply advising from the side-lines. As such, our small team worked in a smart, agile and collaborative manner, focussing on how to efficiently plan, create, and manage 3 simultaneous RFPs whilst ensuring alignment with the client’s global stakeholders.
Our approach was to:
- treat the activity as one contiguous programme and not three totally separate RFPs
- work collaboratively with the global client team, with single programme governance and a single plan.
- working closely with client procurement, client vendor management, client delivery teams, external legal counsel and of course, potential suppliers
- drive consistency and reuse wherever possible
- create an optimised, aggressive market engagement approach that would minimise the risk of overlap and potential burn out
- develop clear requirements (including “musts and wants”) and comprehensive supporting volumetric data
- engender a spirit of collaboration