4 Proven Reasons to Partner with a Start-Up

BY Ludovico Mastrocinque García

Every day around the world, technology vendors send thousands of commercial proposals to be evaluated and considered. Partnering and purchasing solutions from other companies is a vital part of how our economy operates on a daily basis. As this is something so familiar to many of us, I often get the question: why should we partner with a start-up? With the growth of larger technology companies over the past couple of years, isn’t it safer to choose to work with a larger, bigger and more established company?

In many cases, the answer to this question is no. Depending on your company’s specific needs, start-ups can provide a series of benefits and advantages that larger organizations cannot. Here are four important reasons why partnering with a start-up can work to a company’s advantage: 

  1. Agility and speed: Smaller start-up companies are by definition...small. Having less resources and headcount might sometimes be seen as a disadvantage, but in many cases it is a blessing in disguise. Looking for a quote from the sales team? Having trouble and needing to contact customer support? Wondering what the product roadmap is? These are all important questions that customers have. At larger technology companies, answering a ticket can take multiple days, let alone actioning feedback regarding the product roadmap or providing visibility on pricing. Start-ups can tackle all of these issues faster, as they have a smaller organizational footprint and require the alignment of less people for every decision. For final customers, this means less time spent on administrative burdens, which in turn can be used to unlock all the benefits their product can offer them.

  2. Innovation: Many young tech companies are disrupting a market category, or in some cases, even creating a new one. Start-ups are not anchored down by how things currently are, and they focus on how things should be. By partnering with them, companies can access a completely new set of technologies, features and enhancements that can give them a competitive advantage over their competitors. Partnering with a start-up can help you break free from the weights that are currently holding you down, spurring innovation and growth within your organization. 

  3. Commitment: For a start-up, every customer counts. First, the number of clients in their portfolios is smaller with respect to larger players. Most importantly, start-up employees are wildly committed — they are eager to make their company’s mission and vision a reality. They will go to great lengths to provide every single customer with the highest level of service for each part of the buying journey. This type of attention is much harder to get from larger vendors or players that have thousands - even millions - of different customers, and prioritize their efforts and resources on the customers with the biggest budgets. 

  4. Flexibility: Choosing a start-up as a vendor can also give companies the margin of flexibility that long-established entities so often lack. This can come across in many different ways. For example, a smaller vendor is more likely to provide advantageous commercial conditions (discounts, payment terms, etc.) than a larger player. Start-ups are also more likely to welcome input from customers who wish to have their say in a product roadmap and look for tailor-made product feature developments able to meet their very own specific needs and problems. Working with a partner willing to adapt and keep an open mind often proves to be a total game-changer, and you and your team will reap its benefits for years to come. 

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