Build, Buy or Partner

When trying to come up with your next product or service a common question comes up - Should we Build, Buy or Partner?


Which decision is right?

It depends. There are a lot of factors to consider. Some of which are below.

  • Faster time to market
  • Utilize Intellectual Property / Skills you don’t own
  • Access to markets you may not otherwise be able to enter
  • Reduce / Share Risk

The Ultimate Decision Point

imageThe customer is king. Every business needs to make a Build, Buy or Partner decision when determining their go to market strategy. The smart companies consider the customer first as they go through their decision process.

Of course, some companies have a very strong NIH mentality that prevents them from considering a buy or partner decision. I’m not arguing for or against this mentality here. In some organizations (nee institutions) it’s just the way it is.

My point is … The Customer should be deciding factor.

When to consider one vs. the other.

  • Partner: If there is a risk of vendor lock-in their should be a strong lean towards partnering.
  • Buy: If there is time to integrate offerings a buy decision may be warranted.
  • Build: If this is a new product or service offering there may be enough time to develop the product completely inside your walls.

SNAGHTML40d560d9Time can be considered on multiple fronts. In this case I’m using time as a factor for getting the product or service to market in a time frame that meets the customers needs.

In a follow on post I will discuss some of the factors to consider when making a Build, Buy or Partner decision.

What do you think?

  • What are your decision points when making a Build, Buy or Partner decision?
  • What examples of great build, buy or partner decisions have you seen?
  • What lessons have you learned when implementing build, buy or partner decisions?

Please comment here or connect with me via any of my contacts points below.

clip_image002About The Author:
I have spent the last 20 years working in various aspects of the ECM industry. I am currently with
Kodak as a Director of Business Development. In my past I have spent time at Kofax, Microsoft, FileNet, K2, and at Captaris (which was acquired by Open Text). Prior to that I was a Unix VAR running my own company. Follow me on Twitter, check my blog, send email or find me on Facebook or LinkedIn.