By Nick Claxson, CEO of Comtec

One throat to choke — it’s one of those much-used phrases that we love to hate in IT. The fact remains, it’s a perfect description; one supplier to provide your hardware, software and solution needs. No disputes over which partner is responsible for what, or which SLA covers which service. While there are definite benefits here, the same can’t be necessarily be said for choosing one manufacturer / developer for all your tech needs.

You know what I’m talking about; companies with a formalised (or culturally influenced) policy to stick to one supplier. How often have you heard we’re a Microsoft house; or we’re committed to Avaya? Do those same benefits apply on this side of spectrum too? Cost efficiencies, better quality, improved support?

It’s difficult to know because your options are limited. Whereas working with a single service provider offers infinite benefits, working with one technology manufacturer restricts your choice and may even keep you from capitalising on the wider benefits

Move away from tech, for a moment. Consider the difference between the traditional free house and the pub. It’s a way of life here in the UK; we’re used to certain pubs and chains being associated with one brewery that essentially owns the establishment. The result? There is always consistency. But, you ask for Coke and you get a Pepsi, or if you fancy something hoppier, will have a limited choice of lager and ale, depending on the size of the brewery in question. So-called free houses, on the other hand, can source their refreshments from any supplier or brewery they choose to. The result? More choice and more opportunity to try new things.

While a simplified example, it demonstrates the benefits of having options.

Back to IT, as a service provider, specifically a Managed Applications Access Partner (MAAP), one of our key focus areas is on providing consultancy around which solutions are fit for purpose. In practice, what this means is matching customer requirements and desired outcomes to the right technology product or solution. Yes, as a service provider we do have relationships with multiple vendors and this means that we’re able to offer our clients the best options available. There’s that word again: options.

For Comtec, it’s all about ensuring our customers have the right technology in place, at the right price, for the right purposes.

Technology should be a business enabler, and we believe it’s only through choice of tech, and of course working with the right partner to support and advise, that this can be accomplished. To learn more, read our eBook on ‘Bringing business enablement back to the service provider relationship‘.