The 90’s are forcing companies to review all aspects of doing business. Partnerships, alliances and other inter-company relationships are now a matter of course. This paper explores an alternate method currently utilized by one of the major U.S. oil pipelines to acquire products and/or services. The method stresses the formation of long-term alliances to the mutual benefit of both the supplier and the end user companies. The paper uses as an example a SCADA system currently being implemented for this oil company. It outlines the method and explains the pitfalls that have been encountered. As well, the potential benefits to both the supplier and the customer are summarized.

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