Yesterday, we posted a blog that explained the benefits of B2B collaboration. Today, we'll go over the first of three hurdles.
Overcoming the Obstacles
So what most often gets in the way of B2B collaboration? A recent Aberdeen report[i] outlines many of the hurdles that impede both B2B leaders and followers. Below is the first of three of the most common—along with solutions you can use to overcome them.
Hurdle #1: Lack of infrastructure or resources to support and sustain B2B integration initiatives.
B2B collaboration is still relatively new and represents a sea change in the way companies do business. So it’s not surprising that many organizations need to ramp up or realign infrastructure and resources before participating. The good news? It may be easier than you think.
What’s the solution? Rather than trying to create everything internally, consider outsourcing to develop the resources required. Many SaaS solution providers can provide the infrastructure and support necessary to help you make and maintain the transition, while offering the advantage of lower up-front and overall costs plus faster time to value than traditional approaches. Collaborative B2B networks like the Ariba® Network offer a many-to-many resource that you can leverage across multiple customers to maximize ROI, greatly expanding your visibility to buyers at the same time. And tools like the Ariba Integration Connector, powered by Dell Boomi[ii], use an integration-as-a-service approach to streamline and expedite B2B collaboration (see details below). While you’ll need some sort of back-end order and invoice or ERP system to begin, it can be as basic as an Excel file or QuickBooks—as long as you’re able to generate the files required for translation to cXML. A growing number of service providers are available to help you set up such a system if you don’t already have one in place. Keep in mind that B2B automation eliminates the need for many manual, repetitive tasks, freeing up time and resources that you can then repurpose to help move your B2B initiative forward.
In the Next Blog We'll Tackle B2B Collaboration Hurdle #2 - Executive Reluctance in Investing in New Technology