Vendor mergers and acquisitions can be intense experiences for any company’s leadership and shareholders, but imagine how customers must feel. Whether they are with a smaller shop that’s becoming part of a bigger company, or longtime partners with a large, renowned provider picking up smaller innovators, customers will always wonder about in what ways their products and service might be impacted.
Will current relationships suffer because front-line client contacts are too distracted with some new enculturation effort? Will services degrade, change or disappear outright? These and similar concerns have to be swimming through the brains of Intacct and Sage customers alike in light of the recent acquisition of the latter by the former.
You can imagine what is going through the minds of Intacct clients right now: how will this acquisition impact us, how long will Sage continue to support our product, who do we go to for support or other assistance now? These are all valid concerns and we’ve noted below a few other areas that Intacct clients should keep in mind as the acquisition rolls out:
A common side effect of strategic acquisitions is the failure to manage customer expectations. This can often lead to customers heading for the door. Changes in expected contacts — calls, emails, newsletters, updates and similar outreach that reinforces a customer relationship — can undermine client confidence. Be aware of what (and how many) communications are shared from the new owners; you should not have to wonder what is going on as this can lead to distrust and a quickly deteriorating client/vendor relationship.
Other Vendor Options
The uncertainty that an acquisition brings may be a good opportunity to look at other options in the market. Vendors are continually making improvements to their accounting systems, and you’re just doing due diligence by keeping your eyes and ears open regarding other technology platforms. Vendor loyalty is a good thing, you just have to make sure that you put your company’s well-being front and center, even if that means considering other products and services to support your business.
Who’s Supporting Who?
What happens when your favorite account manager gets moved to another team, and now you’re stuck with someone who knows nothing about your company, your history, your goals or your requirements? This is a common occurrence as teams get merged or reduced after an acquisition. Much of the value we get from our vendors comes from the relationships we develop with them. When those relationships go away, we’re left with a lot of questions. Trust is strained and confusion reigns. And many more questions arise regarding the “value” that vendor is providing.
As the dust settles on any merger or acquisition, it’s tempting to be looking within, to be excited about the new, evolving organization. However, it’s important to move forward with your eyes wide open to understand the direction of the newly combined organization, and if it fits with company’s goals. If you’re an Intacct client who has questions or concerns about the new Sage acquisition, let’s chat. Contact me directly to discuss your organization’s current situation, and we’ll see how we can help.