Dependency on cloud providers versus the trinity of vendor management, contractual practices and sourcing (users only)

Location:Salons de Romree, Grimbergen


Many organisations have transferred part or all of their IT to the cloud. Drivers for doing so include less upfront investment, faster deployment, enhanced scalability, increased device and location independence, and perceived cost reductions. At the same time, sales models have changed towards SaaS-only, specialisation has led to fewer options, and greater competition is decreasing interest in experimentation. The result is a feeling of growing dependency on cloud providers.


But which dependency are we talking about? For what types of cloud services? What vendor practices are aggravating dependency – and even leading to lock-in? And finally, what can organisations still do to limit their dependency on their cloud providers?


At this X-change, we will take on these questions. Kris Maes of Galapagos will set the scene, focussing on what organisations can do before committing to a specific cloud-based provider, and referring to Beltug’s work on fair commercial practices. Then, Jan Joos from Stibbe will discuss the possibilities from a legal point of view, both contractual and regulatory. Finally, Pieter De Meulenaer, 4ATOM, will walk us through some of the drivers of the cloud model, and share real-life examples of the options for organisations.


In parallel to this session, we will be holding an X-change on the human element in your ICT. We'll hold the welcome coffee and closing drink together, so you will have the chance to meet up with even more of your peers!



Salons de Romree
Beiaardlaan 31
1850 Grimbergen







13:00 Welcome coffee


13:30 Introduction: Participants’ expectations around the table


Levi Nietvelt, Business Manager (English)


13:45 User story: IT vendor management - a tactical approach to choosing your dependency


When discussing dependence on cloud providers, we have to define the type of dependency and the cloud providers we are referring to. Both depend on your IT strategy and business capabilities. In some cases, relying on a specific vendor could be perceived as a strategic, long-term partnership. This is the framework being applied by Galapagos: the perception of 'dependence' depends on the business. The research business, for example, which is at the core of this health company, relies heavily on specific vendors, and accepts this ‘dependency’.


Kris Maes, IT vendor manager, Galapagos (English)


14:15 Choose your weapon: legal tools for combatting harmful dependence


There is no one-size-fits-all solution for addressing cloud vendor lock-in issues. Yet, businesses can have recourse to various tools that may mitigate the resulting risks. Stibbe will present how a combination of adequate governance of the provider relationship, good contracting practices, and clever use of the applicable laws and regulations might save businesses from harm.


Jan Joos, Lawyer, Stibbe (English)


14:45 Break


15:15 No miracles: using governance and sourcing to avoid dependency


This presentation will discuss Porter's 5 Forces model, the drivers and the economics behind the use of cloud. You’ll discover that while a new paradigm shift around infrastructure services may offer a solution, it probably isn’t in the cards. What then are viable mechanisms to cope with cloud services as part of the ICT portfolio? There are no miracle solutions, but there are several points of attention from a governance and sourcing perspective in today's cloud offerings. You’ll hear real-life examples of how organisations are bolstering existing best practices, and avoiding future pitfalls.


Pieter De Meulenaer, managing partner, 4ATOM (English)


15:45 Discussion - let's have a look at your experiences, your questions and best practices


16:15 Wrap up & Closing drink


18:00 End