SIAM – How to make sure you run a relay race without dropping the baton

Historically, there have been lots of large outsourcing deals where organisations decide to put everything with one supplier, most probably with a large Systems Integration company. As time has gone on, organisations have realised that a single outsource contact to one supplier is not necessarily the best thing to do (as we have seen with the recent collapses of a major outsourcing firm). Probably because they are not getting the best service they  need with just one contract. Therefore, organisations today may start to look at a Service Integration and Management (SIAM) model to ensure they are optimising their supply chain. However, there may be some reluctance to do this, as they will now be managing not one, but many different suppliers, resulting in more responsibility.

Ultimately, before implementing a SIAM model, organisations need to know what their services are made up of. Once they know this, it will be much easier to start chopping them up into manageable pieces and will be able to choose the right suppliers to manage individual parts of their services. However, how do they ensure all their suppliers are aligned and are able to manage their part of the service effectively?

SIAM is a bit like a relay race. You have 4 suppliers, each doing a leg of the race, but how do you make sure they all collectively get around as quickly and effectively as possible, without dropping the baton?

  • At any time, you need to know where the baton is, in who’s possession and how much progress they are making.

You’ve set up multiple suppliers to look after your IT systems, however when an issue arises, how do you ensure its being passed on and how do you know what its progress is? Fusion can offer a Service Management toolset which can help you see who the different resolver groups are and can help you identify where it is in the overall process, enabling you to chase tickets up if they haven’t been dealt with giving you more visibility and enabling you to be empowered to manage your supply chain.

  • The other team members need to move round to support the other team members. You need to make sure there is also a clean handover between each supplier.

You must ensure your operational needs and your commercial contracts with your suppliers are aligned. You may run into a situation whereby your suppliers need to talk to one another to solve a problem, and if it’s not specified in their contracts, therefore they may turn around and say they will not deal with the issue, resulting in the baton being dropped. Therefore, it is important to make sure your suppliers will and can work together and that you set up the right commercial contracts to cover this.

  • No team member can throw the baton to another team member.

Again, this is a commercial responsibility to ensure the contracts with each supplier are set up in such a way that they pass on all the relevant information they have to the next member in the chain. If this hasn’t been done, this could result in one supplier finishing their work and handing it onto the next supplier without any specific instruction on what has been done, resulting in a delay in solving the issue.

  • You need a Team Manager that sits in the middle with a megaphone shouting orders and mentoring/coaching.

Organisations need to ensure they have a Team Manager in place to manage this process from start to finish. They need to orchestrate this process and not just let it happen!

So, to summarise, SIAM is all about transforming your organisation not technology. You need to know what you own and how to manage it. You need to set clear boundaries between suppliers to ensure a clear outlook on ownership and responsibility. You must ensure your organisation structure is aligned to what you want to achieve, and finally, look to standardise on a hub model to provide visibility and reduce duplication. If you would like to know more about how you can introduce a SIAM model into your organisation and how we can help, please contact us.

Neil Peerman
Director of Worldwide Professional Services

For our latest updates, follow me on Twitter @neil_peerman or @FusionGBS


By Daniel Swann