Earlier this week, I overheard Greg on a phone consultation. The call was with a client from overseas. He was discussing recommendations for a global company who is deciding whether or not to renew services with their existing provider, or put together a Request for Proposal (RFP) for managed print services (MPS). The client is global, has had MPS with a provider for 6 years and is not happy.
Their goals are still not being met. We won't share names, but we'll use our experience to share our philosophy of...
"the rising tide of MPS clients, lifts all MPS Ships."
Increasingly, we are finding clients and providers of MPS seeking fresh perspectives and third party consultation to help improve their trusted advisory status. This overseas client is debating whether or not to:
(1) renegotiate with the existing MPS provider;
(2) create an RFP;
(3) bring management of print (back) inside; or
(4) evaluate MPS providers "ways/intentions/motivations", and then partner for a more trusted collaborative experience.
We work with buyers and sellers of Managed Print Services to communicate, transform and become more mobile in an increasingly transformative world.
Analyzing the nature of the relationships, intentions, responsibilities, commitments, performance agreements and motivations etc is just the beginning. While looking at the motivations of the buyer and the seller, its important to see if there is alignment or misalignment. How else will goals ever be reached?
For today's MPS buyers and sellers, we simply ask and seek to understand,
"what is your motivation with MPS?"
The originating intent of MPS between buyers and sellers helps understand how decisions will be made, as well as give insights to the overall evolution of the multi-year MPS program.
Is it mutually beneficial? Does it transform over time?
Recently I attended an educational webinar titled "The Top 5 Keys to Business Success in Managed Print". Early in the presentation, a poll was generated. I didn't participate, but I was keenly interested in the nature of the question and options. Here is a screen shot I "captured" using (Mac, Command, shift, 4) with the results:
The motivations for channel service providers to adopt MPS include: (1) protecting customer base; (2) Grow revenue; (3) Penetrating new accounts; (4) Differentiating against the competition; and (5) Expand spend with existing accounts. The MPS industry is filled with varying degrees of motivations. Some successful, some not so much.
If you're motivation is listed above, ask yourself, does it align or misalign with the target market for MPS?
According to CompTIA's "Examining the Print and Document Management Market" study, here are the buyer's MPS demand drivers:
Customer's with needs for MPS are motivated with cost savings and lower TCO, consistent and reliable service, proactive approach to maintenance, greater cost predicatability, reduced energy consumption through consolidation, and freeing IT resources from maintenance duties.
Their motivation is not to (1) Extend vendor agreements, (2) increase spend, (3) consolidate vendors, (4) change vendors etc.
The point is...until motivation of MPS providers aligns with the demand of the buyer, efforts will continue to disappoint. More, we see the early adopters of MPS growing restless more than ever and there is a rising tide for the truth and trusted advisors.
Walters & Shutwell is confident in the transformation and alignment of motivations of buyers and sellers of MPS. Whether you're a buyer or seller of MPS, we'd love to hear your motivations. Are they successful? Or are you frustrated with the GAP?