Saturday, June 12, 2004

Learnings: Dont buy stuff for an IT project from different suppliers

Recently I've been purchasing a SAN including Datacore storage routers. This includes HP Servers, storage enclosures, fibre channel equipment and the storage router software. The project leading supplier is someone having special knowledge in the type of SAN and storage router we wanted, not our standard supplier for server hardware.

I thought: lets buy the HP server and storage enclosures including disks from our standard supplier: so we have a bigger volume which may lead to getting better discounts in the future; and also we would always know that all HP equipment is from this single supplier. Therefore I decided to get only the fibre channel stuff and the Datacore software from the project leading supplier.

Bad idea. What happend: the HP servers arrived from our HP supplier way too late only for us to discover that one of them has a hardware defect. Took HP several days to fix it (is this called "next business day" service?) because the replacement motherboard was also broken... This screwed up of course the schedule of our Datacore supplier because he had already reserved staff to do the installation. Furthermore, in case of a project failure, I can return the Datacore and fibre channel stuff to the project leading supplier, but I'm stuck with the HP equipment (ok, this would be not too bad in this case because we could still use it).

Anyhow, in the future, if I have a project like this, I will make sure to get all parts from a single supplier.