Here are six steps for negotiating winning AI deals with your vendor

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While emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, machine learning and the IoT introduce exciting growth opportunities, they also present challenges and additional layers of complexity when sourcing, negotiating and enabling these technologies.

The hype surrounding this rapidly evolving space can make it seem as if AI providers hold the most power at the negotiation table. After all, the market is ripe with commentary from analysts stating that companies failing to embrace and implement such emerging and disruptive technologies run the risk of losing their competitiveness.

But with a mindful approach and acknowledgement of concerns and potential risks, it is possible to negotiate mutually beneficial contracts that are flexible, agile and most importantly, scalable. These six steps will help you lock in winning AI deals.

1. Understand your potential roadmap and use cases

It can be difficult to predict exactly where and how AI technology can be used in the future as it is constantly being developed, but creating a roadmap and identifying your catalog of potential use cases prior to talking to suppliers is a must.

Your roadmap will help guide your sourcing efforts, so you can find the provider best suited to your needs and able to scale with your business use cases.You must also clearly frame your targeted objectives both in your discussions with vendors as well as in the contract. This includes not only a stated performance objective for the AI system, but also a definition of what would constitute failure and the legal consequences thereof.

For example, in a contract for the use of AI in production management, is the objective to improve performance or reduce specific problems? And what happens if the desired results are not achieved?

2. Understand your vendor’s roadmap and how they will be evolving their product

Once you begin discussions with vendors, be sure to ask questions about how evolved their product currently is and how they got there. What data was used to train their system? What are their plans for growth and how will they achieve that growth?

Asking these types of questions can uncover potential business and security risks and help shape the questions the procurement and legal teams should address in the sourcing process. Understanding the vendor’s roadmap will also help you decide whether they will be able to grow and scale with you.

Gaining insight into the vendor’s growth plans can uncover how they will benefit from your company’s business and where they stand against their competitors. The cutthroat competition among AI rivals means that early adopter companies that want to pilot or deploy ML at scale will see more and more capabilities available at ever-lower prices over time.

Read the source article at CIODive.