ALCATEL-LUCENT TECHNOLOGY SYMPOSIUM 2014: Robert Sell, group chief executive – communications, media and technology for Accenture, used recent experience to highlight his belief that business independence is less important than picking the right partner.
“Picking the right ecosystem partner is critically important in winning in today’s market place. In fact, for us it’s a wonderful differentiator against those consultants that still maintain that independence, that agnostic view. They don’t have a strong opinion, they don’t have strong partnerships, and we can come in and differentiate with a value proposition that is solution-oriented as opposed to “kit and gear” oriented,” Sell (pictured) said.
Accenture formed a partnership with Alcatel-Lucent designed to combine the former’s systems integration and transformation services with the latter’s IP networking products and services.
An early customer for the partners is Vodafone Italy, which worked with Accenture and Alcatel-Lucent to deploy a remote management platform that automates broadband services activation, troubleshooting and problem resolution.
“The client probably gets the most credit for pushing us together,” Sell said. “Without us really selling much, the client identified where we have these strengths, and that it was complementary to put us together.”
An important factor in this deal is that essentially Vodafone Italy is working with Alcatel-Lucent, which in turn is working with Accenture, rather than it being a two-way pitch, he said.
“That is where a lot of things fall apart. You get guys up on stage, people shaking hands, the photo shoot, and then it falls apart down at the account team. Why? Because there’s an account team on either side, and they have their own opinions and their own relationships, they have their own points of view and their own timelines,” Sell noted.
“I think that model helped build momentum. So we look at that as a joint success story. And whether we shared the particulars with everyone in the account team is not important, we point to the joint success around a very important client for both of us. And that has a way of building momentum,” he continued.