Boutique Providers are Niche Players

DQI Bureau
New Update

Boutique providers are niche players without a tinge of bureaucracy which is ideal for the specific requirements of large companies. These companies may not be huge in terms of scale in comparison to a HP, Sun or IBM, but surely are a strong force to reckon with. These companies offer the advantages of flexibility and agility. They are also the best of breed companies who gain a lot in the long run owing to their positive aspect of flexibility and ability to completely involve themselves to cater to your needs, says Alpna Doshi, CIO, Reliance Communications.


This relationship between enterprises of a large scale and niche providers is a typical example of a win-win scenario for both sides. The association of a niche provider with a large enterprise makes sure that it takes care of its needs by way of good deals and the money received for providing services. In the long run, while working with large enterprises, a niche provider receives training and grooming and in turn, has a cutting edge in serving these enterprises better which can prove beneficial for business. On the other hand, these small but niche providers boost the strength of a big company in terms of IT effectiveness. With so much intellectual bandwidth, a niche player would be a more preferable option, says Doshi.

We have made use of the services of such niche providers on a good note. In software development areas, we have encouraged these niche providers to use agile methodology to ensure a quick turnaround time. In the VAS area, niche players have enabled us to change the rule of the game by offering value added offerings. In case of content providers, we always have a requirement for a high volume of data and these small companies help us a lot in this, says Doshi.

These small companies are always hungry for business much to the benefit of the large companies. In other words, this is a win-win deal. With outsourced partners, there are clear-cut SLAs that enable us to manage them in case of any default. However, one cannot have complete control over them, which is possible in the case of an internal team. At times, when these niche companies are affected by factors like recession, the heat is also felt by the large player.

An internal team on the other hand, offers benefits like cost optimization, ensures that targets are met, ensures that resources are in control of the CIO which enables achievement of targets in 50% of the time, helps experienced staff to grow in the organization, etc. All companies are not self-sufficient. Thus, its required that they partner with those having the best of knowledge. And in turn, the CIO needs to manage this entire ecosystem, says Doshi.