SmartSource TecDirect: An OnForce Rival?
SmartSource, which has been in the IT staffing business since 1996, has launched TecDirect, a self-service online directory of VARs, certified technicians, and other technical professionals. Like entrenched competitor OnForce, TecDirect is aimed at helping solutions providers connect with qualified field staff. Where the two differ is that TecDirect is free for solutions providers. Here’s some perspective.
From SmartSource’s perspective, TecDirect is a move to add value to their service for solutions providers. In the company’s own words, per their press release:
“The launch of TecDirect also means that SmartSource now offers solution providers a single, full-service solution that includes staff augmentation and project management services to accompany the TecDirect self-service no-cost model.”
It’s a bold move from a relatively unknown company. Right now, TecDirect looks like it has potential. But the company has a long way to go before it matches OnForce’s web design and user base of 13,000 service pros. Much like eBay, the OnForce online marketplace gained a critical mass of buyers and sellers. Plus, big IT firms — from hardware suppliers to telecommunications companies — use the OnForce network to manage regional and national IT projects.
OnForce is expected to announce some quarterly IT trends within a few days. We’ll be sure to ask for perspective on TecDirect and potential market competition at that time.