Many organizations are embracing agile, hybrid IT strategies to enable faster, easier ways to deploy digital technologies and achieve digital transformation. Such hybrid approaches of both cloud and legacy assets often involve a diverse, multi-supplier ecosystem.

A number of government and commercial organizations have pursued the multisourcing model. While often-cited benefits include agility, lower costs and greater innovation through supplier competition, moving to a multi-source model also introduces new challenges, from increased management overhead, to fractured responsibilities and potential service gaps.

Because multi-sourcing is built on a complex network of relationships, the role of the MSI is critical to successful transition, execution and management. As reasons to pursue an MSI approach continue to evolve, so do the MSI services available. Today, these can range from cloud brokerage to end-to-end IT service delivery through hybrid environments.

When considering providers, there are four critical attributes an effective MSI should bring to the table:

  1. An MSI governance model based on a best-in-class IT governance model that will ensure alignment of all stakeholders and suppliers throughout the IT delivery supply chain.
  2. A proven approach for service management with tools and best practices to support service delivery and reduce risk exposure. A modular, service-oriented and adaptable platform is needed to support an ever-changing technology landscape. The platform should automate IT Service Management (ITSM) collaboration using standard ITIL® practices that have been adopted throughout the world and provide best practices from the public and private sectors.
  3. Expert leadership team with deep experience in large IT projects, service integration and service management. The team needs to know how to manage complex implementations to ensure minimal disruption and a smooth transfer of services. This includes having a strong background in IT infrastructure, outsourcing and systems integration, coupled with leadership skills for collaboration, innovation and flexibility. All are essential to mitigating program risk and implementing effective MSI processes and technologies. 
  4. Keen understanding of how to be effective in the client’s unique environment. Understanding the client’s nuances (including customers, users and critical infrastructure) brings added insight, context and business knowledge to support the partnership. It also helps avoid past pitfalls while driving innovation, quality and agile service delivery. The MSI should bring an established framework of delivery excellence that encompasses strategy, governance, operations and technology.

While the above attributes are important in selecting an MSI partner, organizations should take time to develop their own strategies, selection criteria and goals for successful implementations. I invite you to read more about best practices for multi-source integration in our white paper.

ITIL® is a registered trade mark of AXELOS Limited, used under permission of AXELOS Limited. All rights reserved.

About this author

Bernard DeLisi

Bernard De Lisi

Vice President, Consulting Delivery

With over 25 years of consulting experience, Bernard has expertise in complex managed services programs, systems integration and IT consulting. He has managed large-scale transformational delivery involving Infrastructure, data center and hybrid cloud services as well as help desk and end user support, network and ...