During my work as IT-Consultant there have been several occasions where a project has been de-railed, and the discussion has always been – whose responsible (ie. Blaming someone) and who is innocent.
Basically, the discussion is not always that simple. In these situations – it’s always an advantage to look behind you (in the project phases) and investigate the reason for this “de-railing”.
Most of the cases I see one of the following patterns – and I do believe that this is not unusual:
The client is un-clear of his requirements.
The client has engaged the IT-Supplier (or his internal IT Department) in a project, which has a much unclear definition. The client customer didn’t do his homework and did not investigate the opportunities.
How often has it happened – that a project was established, and development begun; even before the final design specification has been completed.
It is amazing how often this situation occurs – and even more amazing that both customer and supplier engage in a project of delivery – in the name of good relationship – Just to find out that expectations and deliveries are not aligned.
Overselling the IT-Solution
Once in a while (well – quite often) I see the IT-people “overselling the solution” to establish a scenario where the software can be used.
In many cases – certain common sense and simple changes in procedures can solve “the mystery” and leave you with a more streamlined IT-installation and money in your pocket.
Does the supplier have an interest in selling such a solution into your scenario – I am not quite sure they have (although many will take the chance to push in another solution).
A client that is not content with the solution – or even worse a client who later in the stage identifies that the vendor has pushed in the solution – although it was not relevant will find himself in a situation where everyday will be a fight.
It’s basically counterproductive, and will in the end just resolve in a bad relationship situation – and the damage can be worse than the onetime profit generated.
Changing your mind.
Well, basically – this relates back to the first scenario – I don’t know what I want ? The worst scenario – since it does require what I have been told is called “to be adult”.. Basically – to take responsibility for the situation.
he scenario: The client changed his mind – he contacts the supplier with major (or many) change request to the project – simply to try and change focus in the project – instead of just admitting the situation – closing down the old project and resolve what is possible to resolve.
Instead of taking the blow (for the failed project) the war between the supplier and customer engages – and in the end the result will be a broken relationship. Neither party could be interested in this – as an alternative dialog, and change of scope.
But it’s quite amazing how of this situation occurs, and no one “is to blame”…