Is Your Integrator A Sell-Out?

A member wrote this reply in our Access Fundamentals forum about his integrator blaming lousy systems on the customers who bought them:

"I have an integrator, who at one time was our preferred vendor, that continuously makes sales calls to tell us about all the flaws we currently have with our access control system.

Since the system we currently use was recommended and installed by the same vendor, we are reluctant to do additional business with the vendor.

The vendor often points out that the previous security manager was not qualified for the job. I'm sure when I depart, I will become the vendor's patsy.

It's definitely been a buzz-kill to find out our preferred vendor is a sellout. We are glad this is not indicative of the mainstream integrator community."

I can't affirm his statement that most integrators are loyal to brands/platforms when times get tough, and I think that most integrators' willingness to do 'damage control' for a particular brand is pretty thin.

It's also pretty brazen to hold the customer accountable for buying a solution the integrator recommended previously.

How would you respond to this comment? Are the 'mainstream integrator community' sellouts?

...loyal to brands/platforms when times get tough, and I think that most integrators' willingness to do 'damage control' for a particular brand is pretty thin.

It's not clear from the post that the integrator is necessarily failing to do 'damage control' for a particular brand that they recommended in the past. Indeed that would poorly reflect on them to some degree and thereby blunt their pitch.

Typically the extrospective integrator, regardless of brand installed, will focus their attack around a suitable mute patsy (in this case the departed security manager), if one is available. The general theme and supporting anecdotes will revolve around variations of 'I tried to tell him X, but he wanted Y, and thats why in the end you got Z'. The more truth in the accusations the better of course, but the 'real' vendor trick is concealing or minimizing ones own culpability. If their recommended brand fails, they first attack the departed patsy, then attack any patsy even if still with the company, then claim the brand 'used to be great' and then and only then attack the manufacturer directly. So that's a sort of brand loyalty, no? ;)

“Victory has a thousand fathers, but defeat is an orphan." - JFK re: Bay of Pigs

Pretty bland answer - not all of them. As a former Sales Engineer for a security Integrator I was pretty frustrated at the "brand loyalty". They stuck by the products even though they consitently had issues that could never be fixed. I was usually pretty sharp as to when a particular customer would end up pushing the limits of the system and then getting frustrated when it didn't work correctly. Of course I was over ruled by management because they wanted the sale. Then we had an angry customer that they ended up dumping tons of money into to try and make happy. Made no sense to me.

On the other hand maybe their last Security Manager was unqualified. Maybe they were given options and s/he chose the cheapest. Hard to tell from just one comment.

Some companies are very brand loyal. I've had situations as Jason has mentioned, where they stick with a brand even when some one (myself) can prove it's not working. Or just stick with it for way too long. But they keep pushing it, try to blame other things. Oh it's not the camera, its your internet connection. Your router isn't configured right. It's just an off day, they're doing maintence to the web service. So on and so forth.