The recent ruling by a UK judge against IT vendor EDS* will set a precedent on the responsibility IT suppliers have to deliver to promised expectations.


The IT space has long been littered with failed projects that have run over time and over budget. It is usually the unsuspecting customers that are left with the responsibility of salvaging these projects after bearing the brunt of the cost.

“For some time now I’ve been noticing a surprisingly high number of reported failed projects headed by some of the bigger players in our industry with what seems like little consequence,” stated Kareem Tawansi, CEO of Solentive Software.

“I have wondered how they were getting away with it while others are completely focused on delivering value,” continued Kareem.

The EDS case has put IT software vendors on notice – deliver as promised or bear the consequences, including losses incurred by the customer.

Historically organisations have put their trust in the higher profile, large IT vendors; however as the number of failed projects by these providers increases, organisations should consider smaller suppliers.

“The smaller IT providers have no choice but to deliver as promised. Their survival depends on happy customers,” said Kareem, “but often they are overlooked by organisations that prefer to deal with more known suppliers.

“I envisage that this ruling will have 2 key effects on our industry,” continued Kareem. “Firstly, it will highlight that larger suppliers are not always the best choice and often smaller suppliers can deliver the same value with an increased focus on success.

“The second effect could be that customers become more cautious when dealing with IT suppliers – regardless of the IT vendor’s size and previous history,” stated Kareem.

*EDS ruling to make IT vendors more accountable, MIS Financial Review, Thursday 4th March, 2010