How to Pick a Software Deployment Partner...and a Puppy

Let’s be honest…who doesn’t love puppies? The majority of U.S. households have a dog of their own, and even those who claim to be ‘cat people’ can’t resist the fuzzy, warm cuddles of a puppy. But picking out a puppy to own shouldn’t be an impulsive decision, you’ll need to think long and hard about what you’re looking for in a dog.

The same is true of picking out a deployment partner for your company’s new enterprise software. This is a decision that will affect everyone long-term. Just like a new puppy, the partner needs to have a proven pedigree (expertise deploying that particular solution), match your needs as a company, and be a culture fit.


Purebred dogs typically have more consistent behaviors and characteristics than mix breed dogs. This is not to say mixed breeds won’t be good dogs, but it takes more time to understand the traits of a dog when you don’t know the pedigree. In the same way, a deployment partner that focuses on deploying one solution will know the ins and outs of the software and have the expertise to guide your team from start to finish. Your deployment partner should be a demonstrated industry leader through product lead and delivery assurance programs. A partner that has consultants focusing on too many different solutions, industries, geographies, and functionalities will not have the overall business expertise in your solution.

Reputation and Characteristics

Each dog breed has different characteristics and temperaments. You may want a dog that is energetic, friendly, and eager to please, so a Golden Retriever might be a good pick. Similarly, a deployment partner should have proven customer experience that matches your needs as a company. Your deployment partner should have a proven track record of success and best practices that are able to keep pace with changing industry trends. They should be loyal and think of your requirements first, protect you from harm even if that means protecting you from yourself when designing the solution, and constantly look to please you and the team with their performance.

Personality Match

Once you narrow down the breed of dog you’d like, you’ll go to pick him/her out. Before you decide on one in particular, make sure there’s an immediate bond and similarities in personality. In the same way, you should connect with the partner company upon first meeting. The two company’s cultures, whether informal, horizontal, elitist, team-first, or formal, should be similar enough that teams see eye to eye on all project initiatives.

Selecting a new puppy is more similar to choosing a deployment partner than you’d think! Well-known software vendors have many services partners that implement their solutions. Keep these items at the top of your deployment partner checklist: a proven track record, a focus on the solution you’d like to deploy, and a company culture fit.  Upon deciding on man’s best friend (or partner), you’ll want to start forming that close relationship. For more information on what Collaborative's clients think of our partnership, view the video below!

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