By Sairam Bollapragada
While the outsourcing catches on, there are customers who are still doing this for the first time and hence are consistently weighing the risks and potential loopholes on an outsourcing deal. While we show them how we run their business in steady state, their thoughts may still be wandering around the critical question – how do I get there??
The bridge from the deal pursuit phase to steady state service delivery phase is the phase of transition with the most critical ingredient being the identification of the right Transition Leader/Manager who will play the role of the change agent for the customer.
She/he is the glue between the delivery and the pursuit team as internal stakeholders while he is the glue between client management and our management – all to ensure a smooth and seamless transition and transformation. The juggler who works deftly amongst chaos to make things happen and yet maintains equilibrium to get to a customer-desired state.
In the interest of the partnership, the transition leaders would be as successful as the key stakeholders (internal and external) around him/her make them to be. In the real sense, they need all the enablement and support from the sales, account, the regional delivery executives, the customer stakeholders and everybody else. They then can become the centrifugal force that brings about the proposed change in taking over the control and handing the baton over to the Service Delivery Manager post- transition. Till then, the transition leader is in charge.
A Transition manager needs to be an entrepreneur, a delivery leader, an ITIL expert, financial whiz, people manager, a mentor, philosopher and what not. He is consistently watched by so many around his actions, and is implicitly being measured for his productivity in all the areas. Hence he has to conduct himself in the peaks of stress.
An effective transition leader is the one who establishes the foundation of the long term relationship with the customer and leaves the taste of a ONE team which instills confidence in the customer that their applications, infrastructure and business environments are in safe pair of hands. Hence the transition leader must be enabled to the extent possible to lead the way during transition and help gain the customer confidence with the customer seeing a strategic partner in him and his team – and thus in the service provider.
The experience backing the transition leader should ideally allow him/her to bake the customer relationship to the next level resulting in a long term successful partnership.