Hashtag Trending – the Weekend Edition: The problem with purchasing. An interview with Duncan Card.

Hashtag Trending – the Weekend Edition: The problem with purchasing. An interview with Duncan Card.


Welcome to Hashtag Trending – the weekend Edition, where we bring you an in-depth interview with an expert on topics relevant to today’s news.

I’m Jim Love, CIO of ITWC,  publishers or IT World Canada and Canadian CIO

This podcast was inspired by a recent report from Gartner that reported “Fifty-six percent of organizations said they had a high degree of purchase regret over their largest tech-related purchase in the last two years.”

The only surprise for me was that that number isn’t even higher.  For a great deal of may career I’ve been involved in purchasing and negotiating contracts for technology products and services – in IT departments and for many years as a consultant.  I’ve lived through from the days of handshakes to professional purchasing departments, committees and RFPs.

After forty years, I know one thing about purchasing of technology.  In all too many cases, what is supposed to be a process that protects the organization, is clumsy, bureaucratic and designed for failure.  All too often, it seems that good decisions might be more of an accident than the result of a process.

Is this too unkind?  I don’t think so.  Don’t get me wrong – there are good and professional people out there trying to make the right choices – but the all too many times, even smart, dedicated people are frustrated by the practices that are supposed to help them make better decisions.

This Gartner statistic shows that I’m not alone in this.  The results – the ones we hear about any way – often support this.  We hear of major disasters like the Phoenix project — but if you’ve been in this industry long enough, you know – and the Gartner report is only one of many that prove it.  There is, to put it mildly – a problem with purchasing.

My guest today is Duncan Card.   Duncan is a lawyer and the author of Information Technology Transactions – Business, Management and Legal strategies.  It’s published by Thomson Reuters and it is, I dare say, the bible of modern purchasing.   To quote him in the introduction, “it is a business guide and a primer for the most important management, commercial, legal and strategic issues that  you need to know for engaging in a technology transaction.”

The book lives up to the promise.  It’s massive and complete – from setting a context, through detailed analysis of everything from selection to negotiation – and in case you think its all dry reading, it ends with a “Dear Executive” letter which guides you to “put these prescriptions and lessons learned into practice.”

No one better than Duncan to talk about some of the problems with purchasing.  I’ve asked Duncan to come in to our virtual studio and talk to us about 5 key problems that affect purchasing.  Listen to the podcast for these 5 key problems and ways to avoid them.

Check it out.





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