BMG Distribution, the warehousing arm of media giant BMG
Entertainment, recently signed an agreement with Provia Software,
a maker of supply chain execution software that has achieved success among
clients seeking improved performance of customer fulfillment operations.
BMG will implement Provia's VIAWARE WMS for warehouse management,
SPS (small parcel shipping) and ViaView visibility products
to manage fulfillment operations at its 300,000 square foot main distribution
center in Duncan, SC, and at two smaller facilities in Reno, NV and Fogelsville,
PA. Future plans also call for implementing the suite of products in BMG's
third party software distribution operations.
to selecting Provia, BMG earlier this year asked consulting giant PricewaterhouseCoopers
(PwC) to conduct an operational analysis and vendor selection effort.
A joint PwC/BMG team evaluated several top tier supply chain fulfillment
vendors for functional fit, technical environment, implementation approach
and corporate vision, and ultimately selected Provia. Without knowing
the details of BMG's distribution requirements, one can nevertheless understand
the nod to Provia from a high-level. Provia has a strong value proposition
for companies in third party logistics, consumer packaged goods, and retail,
all of which are represented to some extent in BMG's business model.
thorough, impartial selection process is critical to the successful outcome
of an IT software implementation. BMG took the right steps in conducting
its evaluation of vendor options, including its approach in working with
BMG hired the consultant to facilitate the software selection phase without
offering it guaranteed rights to the implementation. Although BMG and
PwC had worked together previously, the selection of a warehouse management
system afforded BMG an opportunity to evaluate the project management
expertise of the current PwC team.
PwC devised a comprehensive selection process, which included an exhaustive
RFP, multi-day vendor demonstrations tailored to specific user scenarios,
and reference client site visits, through which BMG winnowed less suitable
vendors from the list of candidates to reveal Provia as the one best able
to meet its requirements.
PwC and BMG documented results from each step of a process that was both
inclusive and rigorous, the final decision is virtually incapable of being
We strongly advocate the approach employed by BMG and PricewaterhouseCoopers
in selecting Provia. All users contemplating an IT upgrade should take
similar care in examining potential software partners. In dealing with
consulting firms that may ultimately be engaged to perform the implementation,
the key consideration is trust. The following are just a few of the questions
that users should ask themselves prior to embarking on a joint selection
with a consulting partner. Are some of these impertinent? Yes, but then
most important questions are:
- How are
my consulting partner's resources deployed among the various software
my consulting partner seem to focus on a particular group of software
products or does it deploy resources equally to all products?
my consulting partner share in the financial responsibility if the project
runs over budget due to vendor/software-related issues?
my consulting partner care more about selling an implementation
than choosing the best software for the job?