The term strategic partnership is being used liberally, but the definition may vary. What do we mean by being a strategic partner and what can you as a customer expect from us? What is required for the partnership to work? We asked Erik Björhäll, CEO System Verification Sweden, to answer these questions.
“Simply put, a strategic partnership is about two parties’ common view of the business relationship. In a strategic partnership, we are acting as an advisor in the digitization process to help the customer reach a specific goal that entails one or more challenges in their business. The customer might not have a clearly defined assignment, but wants us to formulate a strategic plan together that will help them to achieve their goals.”
What kind of goals could that be?
It obviously varies between customers, but it can, for example, be to increase profitability in a certain part of the business by finding new revenue sources, get better insight through existing and enriched data, streamline flows or review their IT administration costs. Another goal may be to long-term secure the resource supply. We are doing a current situation analysis and suggesting what to do to get the most out of investments. We contribute with our Quality Assurance services and in some cases, we also involve other specialist companies if required.”
Can you give some examples of how a strategic partnership cOULD look like?
“A good example is a customer with an outgrown IT system, which does not support their business goals. We are advising in the work of developing a new digital strategy and are then in charge of modernizing and ensuring that the software supports their future goals. We also involve other specialist companies in the project if necessary, to ensure the best possible solution.
Another example is a technology company with critical products that hires us as a strategic QA partner. The customer wants deliveries with high quality and security while ensuring long-term competence supply and scale-up possibilities through cost-effectiveness. In this case we take full responsibility of the quality assurance and help the customer with both the planning and implementation, including test automation and outsourcing to our office in Sarajevo.
One last example is a customer who must increase their revenues. Then we analyze how their IT systems are currently being used, what unutilized data is available, how different systems interact with each other and how they can be used more innovative and efficiently. We are advisory as well as operational by having business consultants and computer analysts on-site.”
Which companies should seek strategic partnerships?
Particularly companies that have realized that they must make changes to cope with the competition and that have clear goals and a strong will to succeed. In a strategic partnership, we work as a team. We challenge each other and work together to prioritize and find solutions. We provide them with the required competences and in those cases the customer has their own resources, we supplement if necessary. This gives the customer a great flexibility in their existing business, as well as in the long-term.”
In a strategic partnership, we are acting as an advisor in the digitization process to help the customer reach a specific goal that entails one or more challenges in their business.
What is required for the cooperation to work?
“The most important thing is good communication and a common understanding that digital transformation will affect the organization, and most certainly there will be challenges. Therefore, it is important that the decision has been taken high up in the organization and communicated throughout the management team, so everyone understand that changes will occur. It is also important that we get the authority to implement the agreed solution.”
Why is System Verification a suitable strategic partner for digitization?
“We have been working with software quality assurance for more than fifteen years and have vast experience in analyzing, managing and structuring large amounts of data. We started in the telecom sector and has today experience from mostly every sector from banking to manufacturing. We also have knowledge of new technologies and how they can be applied in traditional operations and are updated on the latest and best tools on the market, for example CodeScene from Empear. I would also say that we are proactive in terms of driving innovation and flexible in creating strong teams. The quality aspect and the holistic perspective is crucial for the success of the digitization process.”
Interested to know more about having a strategic partnership with System Verification?