VRM - Vendor Resource Management

Yes, another acronym to share - VRM - Vendor Relationship Management. This one captures the value of the efficiencies of the Internet... making relationships easier. People may not want to have a "relationship" with all their vendors, but having control over the ones they do want is important.

VRM combines a customer-centered philosophy about industry guidelines and the technology platforms (you know I believe it's all about the Platforms) for making interactions more efficient and effective. The above graph shows which process is in place during the phases of customer relationships.

Our clients have asked us to assess the "best practices" being developed from this initiative in relation to "Social CRM" ... a must read is this recent Terametric Blog post Top 10 Reasons Why Social Media ROI is Possible. The key is that we must measure and assess across all our activities. This is hard work and we are trying to make it as easy as possible.

Last week Doc Searls led the CRM + VRM 2010 conference at the Berkman Center at Harvard. Here are notes from the event by Trust Fabric.

More here on VRM -  Below are some details:

By providing customers (and users) with their own tools for managing relationships with vendors, Doc sees VRM as “a way to fulfill one of the promises of The Cluetrain Manifesto” — the widely-cited website and book written in 1999 by Doc and three other authors. An excerpt:


Doc believes that customer reach will only exceed vendor grasp when customers acquire tools for the job. Encouraging development of those tools has been ProjectVRM’s primary work since the project was launched in late 2006. Since then the VRM community has grown to include many development projects, companies, allied associations and individuals. The community’s work is outlined in the project wiki

Stay tuned for more of our POV as we look at deployments that prove the value of VRM role in the evolving formula for better Sales and Marketing.