This is the final post in a series that started with Big Pain Equals Big Gain that outlined how HP (and surely other companies) is in the position to capitalize on the changes it is going through, and that the technology industry is facing. Since then we have outlined how to Make it Unbelievably Easy, setting a New Transparency Standard, and putting HP at the Center of the Ecosystem, will contribute to a new competitive advantage for HP. In this post we address how all of this effort can Be Foundational. Change is hard work and we want this change to stick. Here are four cornerstone elements of a plan to do just that:
In this the age of big data, we have the ability to capture and keep every interaction and every transaction with every partner. This information can be used in the aggregate to inform decisions about policy -- but that is just the start. Pattern matching and other analysis techniques can help identify the power partners of the future. From the partner’s perspective, a large company that speaks in one voice is not only a pleasant surprise, but the obvious choice for the next transaction. So the cornerstone of the foundation is to capture and retain all information about a partner.
Jeff Bezos challenged everyone in Amazon.com to expose their internal services as APIs to the rest of the company, and be prepared to do so to the outside world too. This mandate changed the culture at Amazon.com and the same can be said for any other company. Building on the first cornerstone of capturing and retaining all information, a functional API will ensure that the data gets used. Data that gets used - lives. So the second cornerstone is to share with defined APIs.
The value of information is dramatically enhanced when related to other information. Viewing sales volume in the context of a promotion deadline is much more valuable than the sum of the sales transactions. The relationship between captured data is almost as valuable as the underlying data.
No one can own all of the data. The desire to build a system that displaces other systems is incredible and has driven the launch of many all encompassing systems. The fourth cornerstone goes the other direction and federates data management -- therefore contributing to the health and success of many systems.
The beauty of this approach is that it can just be started one day. It does not require an outsized investment before any of the benefits can be realized. By adopting these cornerstones, a partner program can be completely re-imagined -- while underway -- and the benefits expand each day moving forward.