IMC's "Open-Source IoT RFPs™" for IoT Software Platforms
IoT software platforms on the market have proliferated - there are now close to 400 - and this has driven confusion among IoT Adopters. "Platforms" do not deliver similar functionality, and clear-cut categories for these platforms do not exist. The IMC's own data shows that IoT buyers may need assistance in sourcing this software.
In response to this market need, the IMC is creating a suite of Open-Source RFPs for buyers that are trying to source IoT software platforms. Complete with an integrated compliance programme for solutions providers, buyers can use the RFPs as a template for procurement.
IMC's "Model IoT Provider"™ Designation for IoT Platforms
The IMC has retained third-party consultants to manage the "Model IoT Provider" Designation Process for participating software vendors. Participating vendors will pay fees, as described below, to apply for and subsequently use this Designation for two years (assuming steady-state product) - they will be encouraged to promote it widely among prospective customers. Participating IMC Sustaining Members will by necessity have strong influence on the composition and design of the Open-Source RFPs.
Vendor Benefits of RFP Programme
- Designation as an IMC Model IoT Provider™, which can be used as a promotional tool
- Inclusion (with links) in the IMC's library of finished, open-source RFPs as a vendor that meets the specs
- Interaction with senior IoT Buyers (mostly from Fortune 500s) in the RFP development process
- Exposure to 20,000+ qualified IoT buyers - IMC Adopter Members - from 24 different vertical markets
- Exposure well beyond IMC membership in promotional campaigns during rollout and after
Open-Source Process for Creating RFPs
Senior IoT buyers (mostly from Fortune 500s) that serve on the IMC Connected Leadership Committee will work with third-party consultants and IMC Sustaining Members to build the IoT Software Platform RFPs in an open collaboration process. Working groups are now being arranged to allow buyers and vendors of IoT software to interact and provide their input into the finished documents. The open collaboration process should yield robust tools that are of great use inform IoT Adopters of key program requirements, reduce development time, and facilitate vendor specification and sourcing.
What will Open-Source IoT RFPs Contain?
- Basic categories of software (and applicable, vertical-market applications).
- A checklist of fundamental elements that should be present in these platforms.
- Basic operational/functional requirements that the platforms should meet.
- A list of potential (participating) vendors designated as in conformance.
Distribution for Open-Source IoT RFPs
The IMC will put its entire weight behind the promotion of these RFPs to its rank-and-file membership of over 20,000 qualified IoT buyers, including advertising, direct blast email, webinars, live events, and more. [Important note: software is the single "most-sourced" category purchased by IMC Adopter Members.] But in order to influence the IoT industry, distribution will be much broader, with significant direct email and publicity campaigns to assure greatest possible reach. Solutions Providers that participate will be encouraged to promote the compliance programme with IoT Adopters
What will the Designation Process Entail?
To qualify as a "Model IoT Provider", participating vendors will undergo a Designation Process managed by a third-party consultant, which will include:
- A questionnaire for the platform vendor covering major functions required, plus greater detail of specific needs.
- A follow-up interview with the vendor to cover specific points arising from the questionnaire response.
- Required hands-on evaluation to check ease of use in practice, documentation, etc. - for vendors requiring software download/setup, additional fees may apply.
- Reference customers who can be approached (under NDA if needed) - these customers will not be identified in the final output or documentation.
The output from this process will be a short report issued by the IMC that validates the platform against the Open-Source IoT RFP Suite and provide an independent third-party description of what the platform offers. This will be provided to the vendor and made available to Adopters by the IMC as required.
Application for the Model IoT Provider Designation - covering the initial suite of three (3) Open-Source RFPs - will be as follows...
IMC SUSTAINER COMPANIES........GBP £5,000
NON-MEMBER COMPANIES........GBP £12,000
Open-Source IoT RFPs Rollout
Applications for the "Model IoT Provider" programme are now being taken, with roll out of finished OpenSource RFPs to begin in September of 2017. IoT Software Platform vendors will be encouraged to sign onto the programme soon to ensure they will benefit from initial distribution and promotion at launch.
Note: fees, rollout timing, and other programme details described in this document are still tentative and subject to change.