Today’s original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) in the IT space can position themselves for expanded growth opportunities through a technology deployment partnership that serves their business strategy as well as customers’ expectations for installation, implementation and migration services.
Deployment is an essential piece of the technology lifecycle puzzle. But deployment often challenges companies because it’s outside the core focus of their products and go-to-market strategy. You can make the greatest technology in the world, but it won’t make an impact if it’s not in the hands of the people who can use it. The last mile of delivery to deploy technology at the customer’s point of use can sometimes be the most difficult step in the journey.
However, managing deployment services after the sale may not be the best use of your internal resources. If valuable in-house experts are busy with technology deployments, they cannot spend their time committed to the larger goals of your enterprise. Instead, with a trusted outsourced service partner to deploy technology on your company’s behalf, you are better able to focus on what you do best — innovating products and solutions and bringing them to market.
An outsourced service partner can serve as an extension of your team or act as the delivery arm for your channel to deploy your technology. Whether the assignment is a large-scale technology deployment or a transition to the cloud, your service partner works quickly and cost-effectively — maximizing budget for your company as well as value for your customers. Your partner can support relationships based on rising customer expectations for services by providing high-touch engagements that meet or exceed expectations from the point of sale throughout installation and beyond.
But technology deployment is about more than just installing and implementing technology into customer environments. Rather, the purpose is to enable your customers to achieve their business goals, as high-quality deployments can set the customer — and you — up for lasting success.
What Is Technology Deployment?
Essentially, technology deployment is the delivery of your technology to your customers, and you have two options to accomplish this: 1) Do it in-house by building a global organization with the required staffing, budget and supply chain or 2) outsource to a service partner with the infrastructure and expertise to manage it for you.
An outsourced service partner’s deployment experts can quickly and efficiently implement, migrate and install your technology so that your customers experience its benefits as soon as possible. From basic “rack and stack” setups to advanced deployments and rollouts, a technology deployment provider delivers the quality of service that your customers have come to expect from your organization.
- Implementation: Your outsourced technology deployment partner can handle complex solutions across multi-site engagements, including logistics and inventory, wireless network assessments and full integrations. Your organization can decrease or eliminate fixed costs with a service partner that scales up or down according to your needs.
- Installation: Build customer relationships with pre- and post-installation support, onsite services and converged and hyperconverged solutions. You can help avoid hardware issues and other obstacles that can delay delivery and increase labor costs while mitigating the risks of implementing new technology.
- Migration: Manage cloud migration, data consolidation, physical equipment management and maintenance, and reduce customer downtime during deployments and transitions by working with a partner who develops custom plans that consider the budgets and requirements of your customers.
An outsourced service provider supports your brand with end-to-end services throughout the product and customer lifecycle. The goal is to allow your essential resources to focus on your business and digital transformation initiatives instead of managing logistics and details. By outsourcing this sometimes complex, often tedious aspect of your business, you can achieve increased revenue, faster time to market, greater cost savings and reduced complexity. Your partner will help you deliver your products and solutions seamlessly while also managing customer relationships for enhanced lifetime value.
5 Best Practices for Successful Technology Deployment
Consider these best practices when developing your technology deployment strategy to best set your business and your customers up for long-term success. The goal is to identify the desired business outcomes, understand customer and end-user needs, set program requirements and evaluate results for deployment technology. One of the most important steps — and one that may help with all the other steps — is determining if your organization has the budget, resources and infrastructure to run the operation in-house or if you would benefit from outsourcing to an experienced services partner to manage the end-to-end technology deployment process.
1. Establish Outcomes and Resources
To successfully deploy technology, you must understand what the business is trying to achieve, who the main users are and how they use the system. Create a map of these business requirements — including user activities, integration points and existing pain points of current processes — to help define the deployment process, identify resources and incorporate input from key stakeholders.
2. Understand Customer and End-User Needs
An audit of existing systems will reveal how customers use their existing technology as well as their expectations for implementing and integrating the new designs. It’s important to create a 360-degree view of customers and their end users in addition to the technology perspective. Then, use that information to inform customers about the benefits of the new systems relative to their business requirements. Productivity remains intact — or improves — and customers and end users alike will appreciate the improved efficiency and minimal disruptions thanks to well-deployed technology solutions.
3. Set Program Requirements
Based on assessments of business requirements and user needs, establish the scope of the new system. Your plan should cover the challenges of deploying cloud-based and on-premises systems across multiple locations and a diverse user base. Depending on the technology, you’ll also want to consider update/release planning, change controls and data management as well as ongoing technology maintenance and support.
Defining and communicating the deployment process and the required critical resources helps position the project for success by identifying potential pitfalls that could delay technology deployment. Additionally, it’s critical to establish security as part of the process from the beginning. Some industries have specific regulations that must be met, but a good starting place is using standard security tools and procedures to help reduce the threat of cyberattacks.
4. Evaluate Results
Implementing an evaluation mapping process helps in understanding if the goals of a single technology deployment were met or are routinely on track in the case of a long-term service provider relationship. Test the new solutions against original requirements and daily business processes to evaluate performance. An outsourced services partner can manage advanced deployment services and delivery capabilities, ensure compliance with SLAs and complete data validation when the technology goes live.
5. Outsource to a Service Partner
An outsourced technology deployment service provider will implement, migrate and install your technology, from setups to advanced deployments and rollouts. Partnering with an experienced service provider like Tech Data Global Lifecycle Management (GLM) means that your organization benefits from proven, certified experts who can manage a global rollout or ongoing lifecycle management for your products. As your partner, GLM acts as an extension of your team or the delivery arm of your channels so your customers receive a differentiated level of service that enhances quality throughout the entire deployment process.
By relying on a trusted service partner like GLM, your organization can offer deployment services at scale while focusing on product development and business growth.
Discover how to ensure high-quality delivery for every customer with "The OEM Deployment Services Survival Guide."
About the Author
Kent Ridings joined Tech Data in March 2021 via the outsourcing agreement with Fujitsu America, Inc. and serves as the Senior Director of Technical Maintenance Services (TMS) for Global Lifecycle Management (GLM). With over three decades of experience delivering comprehensive service and support programs in the IT space, Kent currently focuses on providing leadership and guidance to field service teams across North America.