Some of you have or will be seeing that I am now showing up in conjunction with iVention US ( iVention US ). Before any rumors get started, let me tell those of you reading this exactly what this means and it doesn’t mean that I’m giving up my customers (so, to you vultures that are now ready to pounce, just forget it!).
Learning New Systems
Over the summer, I’d written some blog posts that talked about the fact that I’d been trying to learn some new systems. One of those systems was the iVention LES (Laboratory Execution System) which is known as iLES. And, for this particular product, iVention US has offered me some opportunities to become involved with their operations. It’s a unique opportunity and kind of a dream to get involved with a smaller company where I can do a variety of things and be involved more at the ground level.
What This Does NOT Mean
This does NOT mean that I’m abandoning my current customers, refusing any LabWare LIMS / ELN work or anything of that sort. While I’m getting more involved with iVention US, they’re currently on my customer list – they’re not my sole customer and I’m not giving up on other products or customers to work with them.
I’m seriously considering whether I should give up doing product selections. Having such a tight tie with one of the software vendors makes the relationship with the customer and the other vendors in the selection a bit awkward. It’s not that I couldn’t probably still do a fine job of it but I feel funny about doing that. Also, product selection work isn’t a major portion of my business so giving it up isn’t as noble as you might think.
The major issue that is stopping me from just announcing I’m giving up doing product selections is that I should then go to all the places where I list my services and remove that. I’m just kind of busy to do that. On the other hand, not getting lots of calls for that, I suppose it’s not a big deal to turn down the few companies that call me about that service, either, but I do like my services lists to be accurate. And, when people call me with business, it is just hard, hard, hard to turn down new business (and you other small businesses out there know this feeling, I’m sure!).
While I have worked to consult with other software vendors as my customers, in the past, it has been a more limited relationship where they pay for some advice, I give it, and we go our own ways. In this case, where I’m so tightly tied with this vendor that my name will be showing up in places like their blog and in Google+, it’s different and more involved that the past vendor-as-customer work I’d done.
When I’m doing product selections, the software vendors involved can sometimes be skittish about having me see their information. I’m sure this new relationship won’t make them feel any more secure about that, so I would suspect product selections would become more awkward.
Yes, I’m still providing LabWare LIMS / ELN and other implementation consulting just as I’ve been doing. No, I’m not abandoning any of my customers. No, I’m not going to tell iVention US any of the secrets other vendors have told me in confidence, not just because of the occasional NDAs (Non-Disclosure Agreements) that we have but also because it would just not be a trustworthy thing to do.