Restoring Relationship Credibility to Win New Business

ISG helps guide a major technology provider in a stalled relationship with a global energy company to assess and reset the relationship, restore trust and win new business.



The relationship between a major technology provider and a global energy company was at its lowest point in many years. The credibility of the provider had declined severely after a string of unfulfilled promises, substantial resourcing problems, and a pattern of not maintaining quality in day-to-day delivery. Prospective work had been lost, and the technology provider’s client indicated that there would be no new work for the provider unless something changed.

However, some residual goodwill remained, largely due to the length of the relationship and a new account manager, who was viewed very favorably by the client. The provider engaged ISG to advise on how it could build on this small green shoot to restore trust and credibility and to rejuvenate the failing relationship.

Imagining IT Differently

Imagining IT Differently

ISG undertook a Cherished Account review, consisting of a series of in-depth qualitative interviews with client executives and provider representatives, as well as benchmarking Net Promoter Scores (NPS) against ISG’s proprietary database. As part of this process, interviewees gave frank and detailed commentary on areas of frustration and unhappiness, as well as unexpected areas of opportunity, affinity and sympathy.

The findings were analyzed and collated in a report to the provider, giving an assessment of overall relationship health, strengths and areas that needed attention. The assessment also defined a suite of detailed and actionable recommendations.

The findings were presented to a joint meeting of the client CIO and provider CEO. Additionally, a two-hour offsite workshop designed to “reimagine the engagement” was delivered for key provider representatives to create a path forward.


Future Made Possible

  • Within six months of running the ISG Cherished Account review, the provider won two pieces of new business, one in the area of cloud transformation, and the other in the area of renewables (a new domain for the provider).
  • Trust in the provider has been restored, and it now has access to senior leaders it had not had for years. The provider also established a customer excellence function to maintain trust and credibility.
  • Problems and expectations are no longer vague and undefined; they are now “on paper.” This enables the provider team to go to the client and tackle the problems in a systematic way.
  • Issues that had been constraining the relationship have been brought to the surface so they can be handled. The account manager noted, “Some of this feedback was from years and years ago. Some underlying pain they hadn't been able to get over.”
  • Due to the success of the review, the provider intends to work with ISG on a regular basis to keep the relationship vigorous and growing into the future.