One possibility to explore with a vendor is an alliance. The vendor may want to develop a new module or practice a technique or obtain publicity; you may want to reduce the cost of the vendor’s software or service. If you both can create a mutually acceptable arrangement, you can serve both sides with an alliance.
Equitable’s law department did this with CompInfo. The result was LawPack. A manufacturer’s law department recently worked with Microsoft to develop a portal at low cost. Another matter-management system vendor developed currency conversion and worked out the kinks together with its first user. An electronic billing vendor offered a significant discount on its fees in return for being able to prepare a case study. These, and other similar alliances, can benefit a law department.