Methodology

PartnershipIdentifying service providers that meet your business and procurement objects can be a challenging task. At Strategic Link, LLC., we simplify that activity.

Our global partners are mapped based on their areas of focus and their proven ability to deliver on client expectations. The proposals and reports we develop are based on key service markets, where unique skills are required such as Mobile Application Development, CRM consulting and Productivity Suite deployment.

The key criteria for the two dimensions, Ability to Deliver and Focus, are detailed below.

Ability to Deliver

The “Ability to Deliver” dimension is composed of three evaluation criteria, each with several metrics. Each provider is scored from 1 to 10 on each metric with the values rolled-up to the three evaluation criteria then an overall score for Ability to Deliver.

  1. Company – We consider the following questions in developing the company score:

    Profile completeness – Does the company provide a complete profile covering their offerings, skills, clients and experience? Without this data it is difficult to provide a thorough assessment.

    Marketing presence – Is the company information presented in a clear and professional manner that inspires confidence? Does their corporate website also provide consistent, high quality information with clear examples of past work?

    Reputation – Has the firm developed a strong reputation and authority in their chosen sector? Is this reputation reflected in independent metrics?

    Accolades – Has the firm won industry recognition or awards? Does the firm have key technology partner certifications?

  2. Clients and experience – Our portfolio evaluation focuses on projects the companies have completed. Key questions include the following:

    Clients – What are the characteristics of the company’s clients? Has the firm delivered to discerning global brands or a less sophisticated client set?Experience – How deep is the company’s experience as communicated through case studies? Do the case studies illustrate an ability to deliver complex projects and create value?

    Proof points of focus – How well does the firm’s experience align with their stated services strategy and areas of focus?

  3. References – The most highly weighted component of the Ability to Deliver dimension is feedback from clients. We contact current and former clients and get their input on a range of qualitative and quantitative topics. Client feedback is weighted by project size and complexity. Quantitative scoring includes the following elements:

    Quality – Quality of services and deliverables
    Cost – Overall value and conformance to cost estimates
    Schedule – Ability to meet deadlines and meet agreed project schedules
    Willingness to refer – Willingness to refer a colleague to the company

Focus

The “Focus” dimension is composed of one to three levels of self-reported criteria. Providers submit quantitative data on their areas of focus, essentially the percentage of the work they do in key areas. While having some of the common limitations of self-reporting, the methodology requires a firm to quantify their focus and does not allow over reporting in multiple areas. For example, if a firm spends 80% of their time on Web Development, they could not report a similar value for Mobile Application Development.

Each Leaders Matrix integrates one to three areas of focus, depending on the characteristics of the market being evaluated. For example, in the area of Mobile Application Development, the Leader’s matrix has two focus areas. Both User Interface (UI) design and the technical aspects of Mobile Application Development are important for complex app projects. In the case of iPad app development, an additional dimension is included to account for the focus on iOS and the form factor of a tablet computer.

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