On 18th January 2017 around 3 PM, I was sitting in a client’s meeting room to close the Web application deal on Laravel PHP. I was excited to close the deal as it is a very good company and the best prospect client for my sales funnel. In a ten minutes time, the CEO of the company came and we started the discussion about our company, work, and project portfolio etc.
Suddenly, he asked me a valid and a frequently asked question “What about the security of the DATA?” Since the last 10+ years I have been responding to my clients about this query and again the same query in front of me, but this time it was not from a technical guy. I have responded him with a perfect description of our agile methodologies, Security processes and more over about the NDA (Non- Disclosure Agreement). He said “Good to hear all these things. But, Do the NDA really matters?” I was shocked because it was a top notch guy of the company, I said it really matters. Then, he said me that he is evaluating most of the vendors for the same project and most of them have conveyed him that “NDA is only for a Formality”. After, understanding his concern I explained him about the procedures that we follow while signing an NDA and working on the same project.
A glimpse of those guidelines are…
1.Our Management has laid strict guidelines about the confidentiality of the client’s data. We sign an NDA with the client before the project. And, we follow each and every step of this agreement or else we have to quit the project.
2.When an NDA is signed with the customer, then only the Client relationship manager, project manager, and the team will have an idea about the project. Other than these no one else will have an idea about the project.
3.The discussion and data stay strictly confidential between the client and us.
So, the client said that’s great. He asked me “Can you show me some of the work done by you, related to our requirement?” I attached the HDMI cable of my lappy to the projector and showed him some of our work. He said, I understood your skillset and working style but we need something related to our work and which is live and not a demo hosting. So, I conveyed him unless we get an approval from the clients we never disclose their names or work on our website to a new customer. If we have an approval from the client, then we disclose the same to the new clients.
He said, “that’s good. But, we can’t close the deal with you unless you have something relevant which is you can demo, else it is not possible to go ahead. “
Being a business development guy, I was worried that how could I convince the client about our skill set and the importance of NDA. I came back to the office and discussed the same thing with my superiors but the response is same that we can’t disclose client’s details when we have signed an NDA.
The next day I have called their Sourcing manager, he said me that they have tied with some other company for the project. I was disappointed as it was a big deal. But, I was happy that I have not done anything wrong to get the deal. So, I thought let me put forward this as a post in our blog so that our other clients can understand the importance we give to their project data security rather than a new big deal. We understand the priorities of an NDA and we oblige accordingly.