Mike Krigsman posted this today morning on his ZDNET blog http://www.zdnet.com/blog/projectfailures/predicting-2012-rapid-implementation-in-focus/ . I tried to post a comment, but somehow that does not seem to have posted. So I thought of posting it here.
I am not entirely convinced that Rapid Deployments will bring terrific benefits, but will be watching it closely in 2012. At the moment , I have apprehensions.
1. If faster implementation is such a big agenda item for Enterprise Software vendors, why do this half way approach of Rapid Implementation? Why not go all the way and offer it as SaaS ? Is the idea to milk perpetual licenses for on-premises software for a bit longer, just by repackaging it?
2. Fixed price is a good thing – but hardly unique. Most ERP projects now are following a fixed price contracting structure. I know no one likes change orders – but change orders happen mostly because of scope definition inaccuracies. Projects are progressive in nature – especially ERP projects. So even in Rapid Deployment, at some point – customers will find out they will need something else on top. Will the software vendors provide such changes for free without a change order? If not – will customers feel happy just by paying a software vendor instead of doing it inhouse or paying consultants to do the work?
3. Consumerization of IT – making IT “sexy” and “easy” – is a good thing for the business users. However Rapid depolyments only solve a part of this problem, which is the installation part. While it is a good start – will customers see enough value with just one part of the puzzle solved?
4. Rise of CFO’s office is definitely not a 2012 thing. CFOs have always taken active role in IT (and other) investment decisions. CIOs very rarely report to CEOs, they either report to CFO or to Chief Procurement Officer.
5. Who supports Rapid implementation solutions after the vendor walks out of the door? Will there be enough skills in the market for outsourcing companies to provide such support?
6. What about integration costs? Stand alone systems always cost more in the long term. Once the rapid implementation goes through enhancements and integration with existing systems – will it offer any benefits beyond other on-premises solutions from the same vendors? And if you enhance a prepackaged solution – will a vendor still provide standard support ?
Happy New Year !