3410 Hillview Avenue
Palo Alto, California 94304

The first ProjectVRM West Coast Workshop (tag vrm2009) will take place on Friday-Saturday 15-16 May, 2009 at SAP Labs at 3410 Hillview Street in Palo Alto. (This is a beautiful space in the hills of Palo Alto, overlooking San Francisco Bay, with plenty of parking. And we thank SAP kindly for making it available.)

The event will go from 9am to roughly 5pm on both days.

As with earlier VRM gatherings, the purpose of the workshop is to bring people together and make progress on any number of VRM topics and projects. The workshop will be run as an "unconference" on the open space model, which means session topics will be chosen by participants.

In open space there are no speakers or panels -- just participants, gathered to get work done and enjoy doing it. Participation includes contributing to the workshop wiki. Here is the Wikipedia page on open space.


The workshop is free. You can register through this EventBrite link. Feel free to also add your name to the VRM West Coast Workshop 2009 Attendees list.

The EventBrite link caps attendance at 100. SAP is prepared for 50-70, however. - Doc

About VRM

VRM, or Vendor Relationship Management, is the reciprocal of CRM or Customer Relationship Management. It provides customers with tools for engaging with vendors in ways that work for both parties.

CRM systems for the duration have borne the full burden of relating with customers. VRM will provide customers with the means to bear some of that weight, and to help make markets work for both vendors and customers — in ways that don't require the former to "lock in" the latter.

The goal of VRM is to improve the relationship between Demand and Supply by providing new and better ways for the former to relate to the latter. In a larger sense, VRM immodestly intends to improve markets and their mechanisms by equipping customers to be independent leaders and not just captive followers in their relationships with vendors and other parties on the supply side of the marketplace.

For VRM to work, vendors must have reason to value it, and customers must have reasons to invest the necessary time, effort and attention to making it work. Providing those reasons to both sides is the primary challenge for VRM.

Project VRM

Project VRM is a community-driven effort to support the creation and building of VRM tools. ProjectVRM carries forward thinking by various parties around the world.

VRM Principles

1. Relationships are voluntary.
2. Customers are born free and independent of vendors.
3. Customers control their own data. They can share data selectively and control the terms of its use.
4. Customers are points of integration and origination for their own data.
5. Customers can assert their own terms of engagement and service.
6. Customers are free to express their demands and intentions outside any company’s control.

These can all be summed up in the statement Free customers are more valuable than captive ones.

In a broader way, the same should be true of individuals relating to organizations. With VRM, however, our primary focus is on customer relationships with vendors, or sellers.

VRM Goals

1. Define and advocate a clear vision for a VRM world
2. Ensure the development and publishing of open standards and specifications for VRM services
3. Create a lightweight and effective organisational structure
4. Drive VRM usage
5. Create and oversee VRM compliance program



Added by evanwolf on May 15, 2009