Here we are in 2014 and the demands to collaborate with your partners and customers is not getting any easier. Driven by a consumer/customer centric approach to running a business, many organizations are finding it increasingly difficult to keep up with demands for more real-time, responsive operational processes. And in many cases the underlying B2B integration technology they use isn’t up to the task.
But what is the “task” in the context of B2B integration? If you want to be competitive you need to consider the following:
- Become more responsive. End reliance on overnight batch or other multi-step processes that delay your ability to react to customer orders etc. Your customers, suppliers and the consumers you ultimately serve are no longer willing to wait.
- Provide visibility to all the stakeholders involved. Just providing internal visibility to operational processes is no longer sufficient. Processes like procure-to-pay and order-to-cash don’t stop at your company’s boundaries. They are truly multi-enterprise and to operate efficiently everyone involved in the process has to have actionable intelligence on what’s going on.
- Automate processes. Even in 2014 companies continue to look for ways to take costs out of the business. Look at your operational processes and consider how to address any manual steps, rekeying into multiple applications and the process collaboration or lack of you have with suppliers and customers.
Easier said than done however if your B2B integration capabilities can’t support the requirements above. Many companies still use home grown, custom built, B2B integration, or they rely on an outdated B2B integration infrastructure that actually inhibits their ability to become more progressive. They then become complacent in replacing their B2B integration technology because the perceived time and cost of doing so remains an obstacle. So a do nothing mentality becomes their strategy, putting their business at risk. But it doesn’t have to be this way.
Watch this webinar https://ibm.biz/BdRGbr to find out how your company can deploy a base set of B2B integration capabilities that can help overcome the B2B collaboration challenges you have today while providing a foundation for future growth.