In an increasingly jargon-congested business world, an ecosystem is way more than a management buzzword. In fact, it is a business metaphor that is here to stay.
Businesses have always been regarded as monolithic entities that follow a standardized set of patterns. However, with the evolution in digital technology and massive leaps in business connectivity, enterprises have moved from being “self-contained corporations” to “enriched networks” thriving on connection, collaboration, and interdependence.
Business giants across the world are acknowledging business ecosystems as an opportunity for creating a competitive advantage over others.
CEO of Japan’s Softbank said, “By providing all manner of services and content on (our) platforms, we are aiming to create a comprehensive ecosystem that other companies will never be able to rival.”
Apple, Nokia, Alibaba, Fitbit, Garmin, Amazon, Mahindra and many more have taken significant steps to build, catalyze and join ecosystem to amplify the perimeters of their business contours.
As an ecosystem is predicated on the significance of relationships, networks, alliances, collaborations, and partnerships, Ecosystem Integration is absolutely essential. This can help businesses deploy and activate assets they neither own or control to approach, engage and mobilize more participants and to assist complicated coordination of their expertise and activities - all to amplify the reach of the company.
In addition, ecosystem integration allows businesses to establish scalable connections between known partners and customers but also offers a common medium for unknown entities to connect with one another with the primary goal of reaching ‘digital escape velocity’.
Businesses, in this digital era, are driving striking changes in business ecosystems to make it bigger, more complex, and essential to strategy.
In order to deal with such changing ecosystems, business leaders must shift and expand their mindset and approach to focus on their organization’s strategy and execution within their business ecosystems from an outside-in perspective.
The outward-in approach is a ruling paradigm in business that is guided by the belief that customer value creation, customer orientation, and customer experiences are the primary keys to success. Hence, the customer is no more a passive entity in the ecosystem.
Dealing with intricacies of ecosystems by acknowledging its variants through an outward-in approach helps the organizations to better engage with their partner entities. It also proves elementary in expediting order-to-cash processes, alleviating costs, improving service, and increasing value.
For aeons, organizations have looked inward to bolster growth and be competitive. However, in this digital era, the objective is to offer best-in-class service to customers as well as partners. The idea being, the easier you are to do business with, the easier it is to develop a connection with you, thus limiting customer churn and savoring new revenue, ultimately leading to an outward-in perspective.
Outward-in approach (employed to view business ecosystems) can be accomplished via Ecosystem Integration, a method of exchanging data with disparate sources across your customer and partner network to gain business advantage.
Integration of a dynamic, ever-evolving ecosystem calls for the precise mix of technology and strategy to enable, streamline, and integrate B2B transactions taking place on an external level with internal data workflows traversing through ecosystem along with other cardinal business applications. Nevertheless, achieving such an ambitious goal can become difficult owing to the rise of on-premise legacy solutions, SaaS applications, and cloud services powering the enterprises.
Existing ecosystem integration approaches suffer from a dearth of crucial capabilities in deploying an ecosystem strategy effectively. Some of the major red flags are:
● Developer-centric custom integration tools that work on point to point connections that need IT teams for implementation and maintenance, in turn increasing operational costs and slowing business growth.
● Complex onboarding process that can only be run by IT users and not by business users, thus slowing service delivery and business flexibility
● Limited data exchange capability that is unable to handle data in multiple formats, multiple sources, or of large size.
● Limited ecosystem integration models - the use of VANs and cloud service brokers tends to be inflexible and expensive. They also come up short on agility, control, and “white glove” service needs of the modern business, but are needed for all round integration capability.
In addition, the current integration solutions lack the necessary IT agility and flexibility to integrate with their respective ecosystem partners.
Adopting a modern, low-friction, automated approach to integrating your business ecosystem is the key to supporting the complex Enterprise need of robust business & IT strategy to power all application integration, B2B and EDI integration, big data integration, and cloud integration use cases.
Adeptia’s modern ecosystem integration solution helps enterprises engage and empower their business ecosystems by:
1. Delivering self-service for business users. Self-service allows operational users to build connections in minutes using prebuilt templates, Allowing faster onboarding of new business partners to help enterprises seize a bigger market share and hasten time-to-revenue.
2. Putting IT in a governance role where it only manages the data exchange while focusing on more critical IT tasks, thus increasing IT productivity and eliminating Shadow IT.
3. Offering a complete integration backbone that can take care of data exchange in all sizes, formats, and through multiple sources.
4. Offering exceptional flexibility in the front end of the business process ecosystem and agility on the back end that helps businesses to proactively respond to changing market needs.
5. Helping organizations gain insulation from changes to their digital networks as they modernize their IT infrastructure.
6. Easy adoption of new business models, since all the integration tools are intuitive, easy to use, and already available via easy access dashboards, thus helping the enterprise take an “outside-in” approach to business ecosystem, ensuring delightful customer experience.
Adeptia Connect, with features of self-service data integration, IT governance, reusable components, business process automation, and pre-built connectors, is one such solution that holds the capability and dimension to tackle the complexities of business ecosystems and allow ecosystem integration to provide an outstanding customer experience.