Following on from the articles written by David, Caroline and Ben, I wanted to add my own perspective on the AMS market and, in particular the Workday AMS market.
Having been in technology consulting for more years than I care to admit, I joined Preos just over a year ago and commenced my learning journey on all things Workday, the one thing that has surprised me is the poor AMS experience.
There are so many great things about Workday, why is it then that AMS is not great?
Let’s consider certifications first.
Any partner or customer of Workday reading this will understand that Workday applies a greater level of control over the ecosystem than other ERP vendors. This is one of the reasons why I think Workday represents a higher quality solution than others.
Becoming a Workday Partner is a considerable undertaking, and upon attaining this esteemed status, the subsequent certification of partner staff as Workday consultants proves to be a demanding and costly endeavour.
Customers can also have a form of certification, known as Pro, for their employees. Again, gaining those qualifications requires time and money to be invested.
Given the above, how is it that a partner providing AMS services is allowed non-certified resources to support customers? And why are the AMS vendors willing to take that risk? I think it is one of the aspects that drives down AMS quality. It is surprising to me that it widely occurs. Further, why do some customers choose to work with AMS partners who are not even members of the partner ecosystem? That is a complete mystery to me.
So, does a customer have tools at their disposal to mitigate against the risk of non-certified resources supporting their Workday tenant?
The answer is yes, there are.
In recognition of the fact that not all customers get what they want from their Workday solution, Workday provides a service known as Success Plans. These plans help customers identify where and how they might get more value from Workday and, depending on the tier of success plan purchased, get active support from Workday experts. We at Preos are supporters of Success Plans.
Where the potential great benefit of a Success Plan can falter is in the ability of the customer to execute against the recommendations. If the customer’s internal team or their chosen AMS partner does not have the capability to deliver solutions, it is exceedingly hard to extract value from the plan.
Furthermore, the problem with AMS partners and their role in executing Success Plans is that all they can do is respond to what they have been asked to do in a transactional way. Without specific tenant understanding and that of the broader Workday and business context, they are likely to engage in the ticket ping pong to which Ben referred.
Workday partners are not homogenous.
The main caution I would give to any customer reading this is that not all Workday Services Partners are equal.
Workday created the concept of AMS partners as a subset of their Service Partner group just over a year ago. This was done mainly to distinguish post-production partners from services partners. The primary difference being that a post-production services partner, (or AMS partner) as Workday categorises them, cannot deliver the initial implementation for a new Workday customer, and can be restricted on the number of solutions they can add to an existing customer tenant.
As I am sure you can tell from the above, that means these post-production partners could do an awful lot more than just the ‘race to the bottom’ AMS. But many decide to provide AMS services as the high volume and low margin annuity income mitigates against the constantly fluctuating income profile typically associated with project work.
Preos are the experts in Workday Optimisation. We pride ourselves on our Consultants being certified in multiple Workday disciplines. We don’t ever refer to ourselves as an AMS partner as we don’t do ticket ping pong. And, we won’t ever provide an AMS service. What we will soon do is launch a service that enables customers to turn off AMS and turn on optimisation.
Learn more about the Preos alternative – Workday Enhancement Services.